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ILLINOIS
 

AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION OF ILLINOIS
180 N. Michigan Ave., Ste. 2300
Chicago, IL 60601-7401
Telephone:       (312) 201-9740
Fax:                 (312) 201-9760
E-Mail:            acluofillinois@aclu-il.org
Website:          www.aclu-il.org

 

15% Children’s Law
Does Use Volunteer Attorneys

 

The ACLU of Illinois uses class actions for impact litigation involving children’s issues. Approximately 15% of the yearly case load is children’s law cases. Currently there are several large class actions pending which concern children’s law issues. Clients have been referred by the courts, social service agencies, schools, health care professionals and other attorneys. Volunteer lawyers, mainly found through personal contacts by staff members, team with the staff of eleven attorneys and work on impact cases involving the foster care system, state institutions for children, and other issues involving children's rights. Volunteer lawyers are trained on an as-needed basis. The ACLU uses social workers, health care professionals and psychologists to assist in case preparation.

 

 

CHICAGO VOLUNTEER LEGAL SERVICES FOUNDATION
100 N. LaSalle St., Ste. 900
Chicago, IL 60602
Telephone:       (312) 332-1624
Fax:                 (312) 332-1460
Website:          www.cvls.org

 

6% Children’s Law
Does Use Volunteer Attorneys

 

Established in 1964, Chicago Volunteer Legal Services Foundation is the nation’s oldest, largest and most cost-effective provider of pro bono services to individuals. In 2004, over 1,800 volunteers handled 15,079 cases. CVLS volunteers help clients with non-fee generating, everyday civil cases including bankruptcy, family law, consumer fraud, minor and adult disabled guardianships, immigration, tort defense, wills, mortgage foreclosures and landlord-tenant matters. Additionally, CVLS is appointed to serve as Guardians Ad Litem (GAL) in contested or problematic minor guardianship cases in the Cook County Circuit Court Probate Division. GALs investigate the parties and the issues and make written reports to the court that includes a recommendation as to the child's best interests. CVLS’ staff works one-on-one with interested volunteers and provides comprehensive training materials. Clients are referred by the courts, social service agencies, schools, health care professionals, attorneys and other legal aid programs. We accept calls from the public and from children seeking legal information during business hours. The Foundation handles approximately 600 children’s law cases a year.

 

 

CHILDREN & FAMILY JUSTICE CENTER
NORTHWESTERN UNIVERSITY, SCHOOL OF LAW
357 E. Chicago Ave.
Chicago, IL 60611-3069
Telephone:       (312) 503-8576
Fax:                 (312) 503-8977
Website:          www.law.northwestern.edu/cfjc

 

100% Children’s Law
Does Use Volunteer Attorneys

 

The Children and Family Justice Center (CFJC), a comprehensive clinical children's law program, promotes justice for children, adolescents and their families through legal representation, policy advocacy and law reform. As part of Northwestern University School of Law's Bluhm Legal Clinic, CFJC faculty, staff, and students work with young people and families in matters relating to delinquency and crime, the collateral consequences of criminal convictions, school discipline, immigration/asylum, and fair sentencing practices. The CFJC also collaborates with community members, government entities and other advocacy organizations to develop fair and effective strategies for systems reform.

 

 

CHILDREN’S LAW PROJECT
LEGAL ASSISTANCE FOUNDATION OF CHICAGO
120 S. LaSalle Street, Ste. 900
Chicago, IL 60603
Telephone:       (312) 341-1070
Fax:                 (312) 341-1041
Website:          www.lafchicago.org

 

100% Children’s Law
Does Use Volunteer Attorneys

 

The Children’s Rights Project of the Legal Assistance Foundation of Chicago was begun in 1984 to provide pro bono representation to children. The main goal of the project is to represent parents and relative foster-parents involved with social services and juvenile court abuse/neglect/dependency proceedings, with an emphasis on obtaining those services needed to keep children safe in intact families. The Project also handles some special education cases, and represents potential adoptive parents. Clients are referred from the Juvenile Court, social service agencies, schools, health care professionals and other attorneys. Volunteer lawyers are recruited through the local bar association, local law firms and by word of mouth. Two major law firms in Chicago now work with the Project to provide volunteers, Sidley & Austin, and Katten Muchen and Zavis.

 

Training is offered to volunteers in a formal training program held once a year. Supplemental training is provided as needed. The staff contacts volunteers about potential cases and then monitors cases through telephone calls or by teaming a volunteer with a staff member. Social workers and psychologists are consulted to help in the preparation of some cases.

 

The Project has brought a number of impact cases. Some recent examples have been in the areas of homeless families, visitation, children's right to counsel, teen parenting issues and foster care benefits.

 

 

EDWIN F. MANDEL LEGAL AID CLINIC
UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO LAW SCHOOL
6020 South University Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637
Telephone:       (773) 702-9611
Fax:                 (773) 702-2063
Website:          www.law.uchicago.edu/mandel

 

25% Children’s Law
Does Not Use Volunteer Attorneys

 

The Edwin F. Mandel Legal Aid Clinic offers a variety of services to the community including representation of children through the Criminal and Juvenile Justice Project. The Clinic opened in 1957 and is staffed with eight attorneys and one paralegal. The Project, established in 1992, is focused on providing legal representation to children accused of criminal and delinquent behavior subject to transfer from juvenile to adult criminal court. Training is provided to law students as part of the law school curriculum and students are teamed with staff attorneys to assist clients referred from Juvenile Court, the Public Defender’s Office and other attorneys. Social work students assist the law students and staff in preparation of their cases.

 

 

LOYOLA CIVITAS CHILDLAW CLINIC
LOYOLA UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO
25 E. Pearson Street
Chicago, IL 60611
Telephone:       (312) 915-6481
Fax:                 (312) 915-7201
Website:          http://www.luc.edu/law/academics/special/clinic/child_family.html

 

100% Children’s Law

 

The Clinic is an outgrowth of the Loyola Childlaw Program, a program that offers degree programs for legal and nonlegal professionals who seek a specialized understanding of the law in order to better serve the needs of children and families. The Clinic began in 1996. There are two staff attorneys and approximately 14 to 18 students participate in the Clinic each semester. The Clinic handles approximately 50 cases each year. Clients are referred from Juvenile Court and other attorneys in the fields of abuse and neglect, juvenile delinquency and contested child custody matters.

 

The Childlaw Program covers a wide variety of classes in children’s law, including Children and the Law, ChildLaw Policy, Legislative Advocacy for Children and Adolescence and the Law. Loyola also offers a Masters of Laws (L.L.M.) in Childlaw degree and a Masters in Jurisprudence (M.J.) Degree in children’s law for nonlegal professionals.

 

 

NATIONAL IMMIGRANT JUSTICE CENTER
HEARTLAND ALLIANCE FOR HUMAN NEEDS & HUMAN RIGHTS
208 S. La Salle St., Ste. 1818
Chicago, IL 60604
Telephone:       (312) 660-1370
Fax:                 (312) 660-1505
Website:          www.immigrantjustice.org

 

Does Use Volunteer Attorneys

 

The National Immigrant Justice Center, a program of Heartland Alliance for Human Needs & Human Rights, provides direct legal services to and advocates for low-income and impoverished immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers. The Center provides legal services to more than 7,500 individuals each year and maintains a success rate of 90 percent in obtaining asylum for those fleeing persecution in their home countries.

 

The Center’s Children’s Project employs a Managing Attorney, Staff Attorney and Paralegal who recruit, train and mentor pro bono attorneys who represent unaccompanied children. The Center utilizes pro bono attorneys to represent individuals in immigration cases. Pro bono attorneys primarily come from pro bono programs at private law firms. Attorneys receive training specific to the type of immigration case they will work on. Attorneys can also be involved through policy advocacy efforts and impact litigation.

 

 

OFFICE OF THE PUBLIC GUARDIAN OF COOK COUNTY
2245 W. Odgen, 4th Floor
Chicago, IL 60612
Telephone:       (312) 433-4300
Fax:                 (312) 433-5129
Website:          www.publicguardian.org

 

98% Children’s Law (Juvenile Division)
Does Use Volunteer Attorneys

 

Approximately 38,000 children’s law cases a year are handled by the Office of the Public Guardian of Cook County. In the Juvenile Division, attorneys act as attorneys and guardians ad litem for virtually all abused and neglected children in Cook County. The office represents these children as soon as their parents are brought to court on charges of either abuse or neglect. A staff of 130 is supplemented with social workers, health care professions and volunteer attorneys at the office who always work under the supervision of staff lawyers. Clients are referred through the Juvenile Court and Domestic Relations Court.