Pro Bono News

May 20, 2010
Michael Fickes

Aunt Hattie’s Place
Five years ago, lawyers from Linowes and Blocher helped Aunt Hattie’s Place, pro bono, with a zoning matter for a new foster home in Sandy Spring, Maryland. “Since then, our work for Aunt Hattie’s has morphed into much more,” says Emily Vaias, a Linowes and Blocher attorney who has handled quite a bit of the work for the foster home. Next, the lawyers looked into subdividing the property, which is owned by Dr. Hattie N. Washington, aka Aunt Hattie, who occupies the house on the lot. “As it turned out, we couldn’t subdivide into a separate lot,” Vaias continues. “It had to be done as an addition for it to fit the zoning mold. “ To make room for the addition, Dr. Washington had to tear down a portion of her house, which she did.

After gaining regulatory approvals for the addition, Jack Orrick, another Linowes and Blocher attorney review the construction contracts, set up a ground lease for the property and prepared the loan documents. “I just do zoning,” says Vaias. “So several people from our firm have worked on Aunt Hattie’s Place.” After five years, construction is finishing up, and the facility is slated to open this spring or summer.