Victims of Crime

Legal Representation in the Juvenile Dependency System: Travis County, Texas’ Parent Representation Pilot Project

This study examines outcomes related to a parent representation pilot program in Travis County, Texas. Researchers collected data from 172 parents involved in the juvenile dependency system. Their independent variable was attorney representation and the dependent variables were (1) return to the parent or dismissal of the juvenile dependency petition, (2) permanent management conservatorship, (3) relative or guardianship care, and (4) aging out of the system. There were 52 pilot cases and 61 control cases.

Legal Needs Assessment of Older Adults in Maine

Legal Services for the Elderly (LSE) is a nonprofit organization in Maine that provides free legal assistance. The University of Maine Center on Aging conducted a legal needs assessment of older Americans in the state. They find that between 45 and 86 percent of those surveyed experienced legal problems within the last three years.

Identity Theft: A Low–Income Issue

In this article, Dranoff identifies how identity theft is particularly harmful for low-income individuals. Because identify theft often brings financial loss, those without a financial cushion are often impacted more negatively.

High-Quality Legal Representation for Parents in Child Welfare Cases Results in Improved Outcomes for Families and Potential Cost Savings

This article describes three parent-representation programs: New York City’s Center for Family Representation; Detroit’s Center for Family Advocacy; and Washington State’s Office of Public Defense Parent Representation Program. The article also provides recommendations for evaluating and expanding programs like these.

Final Report of the Impact of Legal Representation on Child Custody Decisions Among Families with a History of Intimate Partner Violence Study

This study tested whether legal representation of DV victim in child custody decisions leads to greater protections and visitation decisions when compared to those who are not represented. When individuals had legal representation, in comparison to those who did not have legal representation but who qualified for legal aid, the DV victim was 85 percent more likely to have denied visitation to the abusing parent and 77 percent more likely to have restrictions placed on the abusing parent’s visitation (if granted at all).

Exploring Outcomes Related to Legal Representation for Parents Involved in Mississippi’s Juvenile Dependency System, Preliminary Findings

This is a preliminary report on the effect legal representation has on parents involved in Mississippi’s juvenile dependency system. Providing legal representation to parents in the juvenile dependency system is found to improve outcomes for children (p. 3). The results described in this report are descriptive. They also find that providing legal representation to parents in juvenile dependency cases increases the likelihood the parents themselves attend court.

Older African American Women and Barriers to Reporting Domestic Violence to Law Enforcement in the Rural Deep South

The main reasons for not going to law enforcement when experiencing abuse was fear of being stigmatized by their church, family, and community. The researchers reviewed data from the National Incident-Based Reporting System and conducted fieldwork in four rural counties in the Black Belt of Alabama. They find that when women feel more independent, which can be furthered by legal services such as assisting with benefits and outreach, they were more likely to come forward to seek out law enforcement.