Funding for civil legal aid has dried up over the last few years, and lawyers, lawmakers and Texas Supreme Court Justice Nathan Hecht are calling for a new source of revenue.They want the Legislature to approve an extra $40 million from the state attorney general's office for groups that help indigent individuals who cannot afford a lawyer for their divorces, foreclosures or other legal issues.Because of economic changes over the last few years, the traditional funding source for legal aid groups -- interest payments in bank accounts where lawyers deposit their clients' money -- has dried up.In 2007, these payments brought in $20.1 million. By 2012, that had dropped to $4.4 million, leading Hecht to estimate that only 1 in 5 people who are entitled to free legal aid can get it.Hecht, other judges, lawyers and several lawmakers are promoting a policy change that they say would increase access to legal aid.It would direct money to indigent legal aid services from the attorney general's victories in "consumer protection, public health or general welfare" cases. Now, only $10 million of that money can be dedicated to indigent legal aid in civil matters.Two bills would raise that cap to $50 million -- House Bill 1445 by Reps. Senfronia Thompson, D-Houston; Sarah Davis, R-West University Place; John Davis, R-Houston; and Sylvester Turner, D-Houston; and Senate Bill 635 by Sen. Robert Duncan, R-Lubbock.Besides the interest payments from lawyers' trust accounts, funding would continue to come from the Legal Services Corp., established by Congress in 1974 to grant money to smaller organizations.That organization lost $6.1 million from its annual budget, reducing money for Texas groups. Those pushing for the policy change hope that the extra $40 million from the attorney general's office would plug the holes left by these decreasing sources."It's kind of hard to tell prospectively what is going to be the need, but we thought it was a fair number," Hecht said.He credited the Texas Bar Association with providing "hundreds of hours" in free legal help but said its efforts will not meet the demand.Duncan said: "Our civil legal system is complex, and there are people who are unable to navigate. This program has run short because of problems we've all been seeing with our economy."Hecht and the lawmakers cited the case of Margarita Sanchez as a prime example of the need for expanded access to legal aid.The group Legal Services for Family Violence Prevention Services in San Antonio helped her get a protective order against her husband and obtain a divorce."At the time that I received the legal assistance, I was homeless, jobless and injured," Sanchez said at a recent news conference, tears in her eyes. "Had I not been given a free attorney, I have no idea if I would be here today."Julia Raney Rodriguez, her attorney and the director of the organization, said more funding is needed. "There are many, many more that never walk through the doors of the agency, who I never meet," Rodriguez said.