Practice Areas

The Legal Response to the Employment Needs of Domestic Violence Victims

Runge writes that domestic violence victims present a myriad of legal needs, some of which include needing accommodations at a place of employment, like missing work to attend court or counseling or missing work due to injuries. They may exceed annual leave and be under threat of losing their jobs. Legal aid can help secure accommodations and protect them at the workplace.

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.

Indefinite Punishment and the Criminal Record: Stigma Reports Among Expungement-Seekers in Illinois

Ipsa-Landa and Loeffler find that criminal records stifle educational, employment, and housing opportunity. They interviewed individuals who are seeking to have their records expunged. They find that these individuals had tried to persuade their landlords and potential employers in the past to overlook their criminal record when applying for housing or a job, but they were often unsuccessful.

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).

Expungement of Criminal Convictions: An Empirical Study

Researchers at the University of Michigan find that record clearing interventions improves wages and employment trajectories. They find that only 6.5 percent of those eligible for an expungement seek out an expungement. They also find that those who have obtained expungements have significantly lower crime rates than the general population.