Guardianship Service of Process

The Problem Service of process can be a very complicated step in obtaining legal guardianship. The phrase “service of process” alone is a confusing one. Petitioners, most of whom are not lawyers, have to: (1) identify “interested parties,” many of whom are not obvious candidates; (2) determine the proper method of service; (3) effectuate service; Read more about Guardianship Service of Process[…]


The Problem For the past 30 years, an increasing number of people come to court without a lawyer. As more people come to courts to access their legal rights, they are met with fewer free or low-cost legal services to help. Across the country, legal practitioners, scholars, and appellate courts have begun to question whether court procedure Read more about Divorce[…]

Social Security Disability

The Study Field operation To be eligible for the study, an individual must be an adult seeking to appeal an adverse decision regarding eligibility for disability benefits to an administrative law judge (“ALJ”).  The decision might have been either a denial of a request for reconsideration (under the traditional Social Security Administration (“SSA”) system) or Read more about Social Security Disability[…]

Federal Court Mediation

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Almost every court system in the nation has an ADR program, and for most courts, at least some classes of litigants are compelled to use it before or during formal litigation. The most common forms of ADR are: Mediation: sessions in which the parties and/or their lawyers meet with a neutral (the Read more about Federal Court Mediation[…]

Intimate Partner Violence

The Problem Right now, in the United States, some victims of domestic and intimate partner violence (DV/IPV) do not obtain restraining orders against their abusers, not because their facts fail to meet applicable legal standards, but rather because legal services providers lack knowledge needed to allocate scarce resources well, i.e., to triage. Were such triage Read more about Intimate Partner Violence[…]

Pretrial Release

The Problem Prison overcrowding and associated issues with state and federal sentencing policy receive ample attention among criminal law scholars and practitioners. Just as important, however, are the problems created by ineffective detention policies before trial. A number of reform efforts are underway to better predict an arrestee’s actual risk of failure to appear (FTA) and recidivism. Read more about Pretrial Release[…]

The Problem of Default

The Problem In the modern United States, too many lawsuits are decided by default. This is especially true in debt collection cases, where reported default rates frequently range from 60% to 95%. Default is certainly bad for defendants, but perhaps more importantly, default engenders a system in which the state publicly declares a winner to Read more about The Problem of Default[…]