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Attorney Training on Early Precourt Legal Advocacy

Upcoming Events / Training / Attorney Training on Early Precourt Legal Advocacy


The National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges in partnership with the American Bar Association’s Center for Children and the Law, is hosting an Attorney Training on Early Precourt Advocacy July 30-31, 2024, in Washington, DC.

Training Focus
Preventive legal advocacy and pre-petition programs play a crucial role in reducing over-reliance on the child welfare system by focusing on early legal intervention and holistic support for at-risk families and parents facing child protection investigations. These programs address underlying civil legal issues and other barriers impacting family stability before they lead to family separation. By providing legal guidance, social services, and resources to at-risk families, early legal advocacy programs promote family integrity, protect against the trauma of child welfare interventions, and reduce entries into foster care. High-quality legal representation for parents involved in child abuse and neglect proceedings is crucial to ensuring due process and parental rights. To expand and improve legal representation to parents, many jurisdictions have implemented new models of parent representation in child abuse and neglect proceedings, including pre-petition legal representation.

This training will include presentations from the ABA and affiliated faculty along with group discussions and action planning to assist attendees in developing and implementing pre-petition legal representation advocacy services in their jurisdictions. To help facilitate the development of new programs, this training will provide attendees an opportunity to 1) make important connections with national experts and peers in the field and 2) learn about different models of service delivery and best practices for early legal representation.

Who should attend?
The training is designed for teams of two or more child welfare system professionals who are interested in learning more about early legal advocacy models in their jurisdiction. Teams may include roles such as juvenile officers, parent attorneys, child welfare agency representatives, caseworkers, or a court improvement program (CIP) director.

Please note, there is no registration fee for this event. NCJFCJ grant funding will cover travel costs in accordance with the NCJFCJ Travel Policy. This includes airfare and hotel. Per diem and ground transportation will be reimbursed after the event.  

Please do not make any travel arrangements until further notice.

Please complete the questionnaire below to help inform the training content. Once you complete the registration questionnaire, you will link to the online registration for the event. Please note that both team members must register separately. All registrations are subject to NCJFCJ approval. You will be notified once your team registration is approved.

Registration Questionnaire