History & Mission

Mountain State Justice opened its doors in 1996 to pursue impact and significant litigation on behalf of low-income West Virginians. Since that time, we have provided free legal services to thousands of individuals fighting to protect their families, their homes, their health and safety, and their livelihoods.

Since our founding, we have represented West Virginians in class actions and individual cases against unscrupulous lenders, brokers, and finance companies.  Already committed to representing consumers trapped in exploitative mortgage loans, in response to the collapse of the mortgage industry in 2008, we ramped up our efforts on behalf of West Virginia homeowners facing foreclosure, filing hundreds of lawsuits to save their homes.  As mortgage servicers exploited homeowners’ need for help by promising loan modifications that were always out of reach, we identified new legal claims to get our clients the help they deserve.  In 2014 we expanded our work to combat aggressive and illegal debt collection tactics used by third-party junk debt buyers, which include suing West Virginians on time-barred and paid off debts.  And we continue to represent West Virginians who have been defrauded by used car dealers and other fly-by-night companies.

Meanwhile, we have continued our work to ensure fair treatment of the most vulnerable West Virginians by working to provide access to necessary health care and compelling compliance with laws seeking to protect our youth, disabled, and institutionalized citizens.  For example, in 2009, we entered an agreement with a state agency requiring millions of dollars in investment into community-based services for people with mental illness, and in 2013, the notorious Salem Industrial Home for Youth was closed in response to our suit on behalf of two boys incarcerated there.  Later that year, we launched our Miner Safety and Health Project to help miners enforce their rights to a safe workplace.  In 2015, we filed suit to stop the State from illegally limiting community based services to severely disabled West Virginians through the Medicaid waiver program. In 2019, we filed two class actions against the State, one to require the Department of Health and Human Resources to provide accommodations to individuals with disabilities who are trying to access the public benefits they are entitled to, and the other to require the Department of Corrections and rehabilitation to provide minimum medical and mental health care in jails.

During the COVID-19 pandemic we have continued to represent West Virginians, through class actions to stop foreclosures and repossessions and other work to ensure that West Virginians are protected during this unprecedented time.

As our history shows, we are committed to using the legal system to fight for West Virginians and their families, when they need help the most.