Introduction to the People's Law Library

The People's Law Library (PLL) is a legal information and self-help website maintained by the Thurgood Marshall State Law Library, a court-related agency of the Maryland Judiciary, and supported by Maryland's non-profit legal services providers, Maryland pro bono attorneys, and the legal academic community.  We rely on a network of volunteers, including many attorneys from Judiciary departments, bar associations, law school legal clinics and Maryland Legal Services Corporation grantee organizations. The Thurgood Marshall State Law Library manages content development.

This award-winning website has provided information for self-represented litigants for over a decade. The purpose of the People's Law Library is to provide self-represented litigants in Maryland state courts information about the law, including summaries of the law, links to primary and secondary legal sources and referrals for legal services. The site gives the highest priority to selecting for content development topics that closely relate to civil case types most frequently handled in Maryland state courts by self-represented parties. We provide information on Maryland and federal law affecting Marylanders and their families in a number of topics, including housing, family law, domestic violence, consumer law, and state and federal benefit programs. There is also a directory of legal service organizations and links to websites of legal providers that may be able to assist you in resolving your matter. In addition, site staff maintains a calendar of events for the general public who need legal information.

The information on this site comes from legal service organizations throughout the state that primarily serve low- and moderate-income people in need.  Information is also provided by Maryland pro bono attorneys and by law school faculty and students. We do not accept advertisements and strive to provide unbiased legal information on the topics that pro se litigants face in the Maryland courts. Note that this site is geared specifically for Maryland's citizens. The People's Law Library provides legal information. If you wish to obtain legal advice, PLL offers assistance finding free and fee-based services. This site is not an attorney advertisement or an e-mail legal advice service.

In 2011, PLL was honored with a number of awards for its service to the public. The American Association of Law Libraries awarded the People's Law Library with the Innovation in Technology Award in March. Later in the year, PLL was honored with the Herbert S. Garten Public Citizen Award from the Maryland Legal Services Corporation. The site has become a vital resource to state residents.

Please contact us if you have questions or suggestions about this site. 

Is this legal advice?

This site offers legal information, not legal advice.  We make every effort to ensure the accuracy of the information and to clearly explain your options.  However we do not provide legal advice - the application of the law to your individual circumstances. For legal advice, you should consult an attorney.  The Maryland Thurgood Marshall State Law Library, a court-related agency of the Maryland Judiciary, sponsors this site.  In the absence of file-specific attribution or copyright, the Maryland Thurgood Marshall State Law Library may hold the copyright to parts of this website. You are free to copy the information for your own use or for other non-commercial purposes with the following language “Source: Maryland's People’s Law Library – © Maryland Thurgood Marshall State Law Library, 2024.”