Duhaime's Law Dictionary

Pro Bono Definition:

Latin: for the good.

Provided for free; usually in reference to legal services provided at no charge in fees.

It is derived from pro bono publico, which means "for the public good."

As in: all the information contained in this website is provided pro bono publicio.

In Latin Words and Phrases for Lawyers:

"Pro bono publico: for the public good, for the benefit of the community as a whole."

Russ VerSteeg writes:

"Pro bono publico: On behalf of the public good. When lawyers render services gratis (i.e. voluntarily without collecting fees), they generally do so pro bono publico. Most pro bono publico work is done on behalf of clients who could not otherwise afford legal services or who have causes which the lawyer deems sufficiently worthy in terms of social value."


  • Sodhi, D. and Vasan, R., Latin Words & Phrases for Lawyers (Don Mils, Ontario: Law and Business Publications (Canada) Inc., 1980), page 191
  • VerSteeg, Russ, Essential Latin for Lawyers (Durham, North Carolina: Caroine Academic Press, 1990), page 153.

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