Access to Justice

  • October 16, 2020

    Atty Gaps, Case Backlogs Set Stage As NY Eviction Hold Lifts

    New guidance from New York's court system has toppled some of the final barriers to residential evictions during the coronavirus pandemic, although how quickly cases proceed will depend on factors like case backlogs and tenants' access to counsel, lawyers say.

  • October 15, 2020

    NY Courts To Address Racial Bias Following Review

    New York State Chief Judge Janet DiFiore said Thursday that the state courts will implement a set of recommendations proposed by a Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison LLP partner, who was picked by the justice in June to investigate the court's response to institutional racism.

  • October 04, 2020

    NY Push To Nix Court Fines, Fees Could Spread Nationwide

    A new push to eliminate court fees and fines in New York could spur similar criminal justice reforms in other states, according to experts and advocates across the country.  

  • October 04, 2020

    True Police Reform Lies In Rooting Out Bad Laws, Experts Say

    Those seeking to hold police officers accountable for their actions in the wake of the Breonna Taylor case must look not only at departmental protocols but also at the laws that may continue to allow racial inequities in the nation's criminal justice system, law professors said at a virtual panel Thursday by the University of Maryland, Baltimore.

  • October 04, 2020

    Trump's Law Enforcement Group Halted Over Secret Meetings

    A judge's recent decision to halt a controversial law enforcement commission organized by Attorney General Bill Barr over a lack of a "fairly balanced" membership and closed-door meetings has reform advocates hoping for a more open process going forward.

  • October 04, 2020

    King & Spalding Helps Secure A Retrial In Ga. Murder Case

    A large team of King & Spalding attorneys recently brought BigLaw resources to the Georgia Innocence Project’s push to win a new chance at freedom for a man they say was wrongfully convicted of double murder nearly two decades ago.

  • September 27, 2020

    Nóra Al Haider On Improving Court Access During COVID-19

    The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated some of existing court access issues, forcing many to try to preserve their legal rights through a computer screen. Nóra Al Haider, policy and design lead at the Legal Design Lab, recently spoke with Law360 about the challenges that people are experiencing, and how the organization hopes to create solutions.

  • September 27, 2020

    Virus Compounds Challenges For Native Tenants In Rapid City

    While dozens of states enacted eviction moratoriums this spring in response to the pandemic, South Dakota made no special accommodations. New efforts are focused on supporting Native American tenants in the state, where affordable housing and legal aid have been hard to come by.

  • September 27, 2020

    In Email Atty-Client Privilege Battle, House Sides With Inmates

    Federal law enforcement officials could soon be prohibited from reading emails sent between prison inmates and their lawyers under legislation passed by the U.S. House of Representatives, as defense attorneys warn the issue has become more urgent now that the pandemic makes in-person visits almost impossible.

  • September 27, 2020

    How Should The Bar Weigh Aspiring Attorneys' Mental Health?

    The high court bid of a rejected applicant to the Illinois bar is raising fresh questions about whether members of state bar admissions boards are best suited to make decisions about candidates' mental disabilities, especially amid calls across the legal industry to take mental health issues more seriously.

  • September 25, 2020

    Calif. Judicial Council Moves To Expand Remote Court Access

    The California Judicial Council accepted a committee's recommendations Friday to look at expanding the use of video technology to allow parties, counsel and witnesses to appear remotely during most noncriminal court proceedings, as part of the council's effort to enhance access to justice.

  • September 20, 2020

    Why The Risks Of 'YouTube Trials' May Outweigh The Benefits

    COVID-19 has forced courts to find creative ways to keep operating, but a Philadelphia policy to put criminal trials and other proceedings "live" on YouTube isn't worth the privacy risks, according to victims' advocates and other critics. That policy is in limbo for now, but the controversy may serve as a warning to other jurisdictions considering similar steps.

  • September 20, 2020

    Americans' Civics Knowledge Up In 2020

    Turns out there may be a plus side after all to a long period of impeachment brawls, contentious U.S. Supreme Court nominee fights and numerous investigations and scandals: More Americans are up on their civics knowledge.

  • September 20, 2020

    Farella Braun Secures New Trial In 40-Year Murder Case

    Marvin "Shaka" Walker has spent decades behind bars after he was convicted of fatally shooting a boy during a 1979 liquor store robbery in California. Through the work of Farella Braun & Martel LLP, he now has the opportunity either for a new trial or to walk free.

  • September 20, 2020

    Amid Virus, Disaster Attys Struggle To Reach Survivors

    Between wildfires in the West and storms in the South, 2020 is already shaping up to be a tough year for natural disasters. And for the legal aid attorneys on the front lines, the coronavirus is eating up resources and blocking access to survivors.

  • September 20, 2020

    Financial Aid For Attys Could Help Close Rural Justice Gap

    Financial incentives and highlighting the benefits of small-town life could help draw young attorneys to practice in small, tribal and rural areas, said panelists at a conference addressing access to justice in these communities.

  • September 13, 2020

    Online Court Pilot Gets Low Marks Ahead Of Wider Launch

    Utah's online dispute resolution pilot program, which is aimed at increasing access to justice, has serious design problems with its online platform, according to an outside evaluator, which recommended that the state work to make the platform more user-friendly.

  • September 13, 2020

    Flowers Case Shows How AGs Are Stepping Into The Spotlight

    The Mississippi attorney general's dismissal of case against Curtis Flowers, a Black man who stood trial six times for the same murders, marks the latest example of an attorney general swooping into the spotlight and taking over controversial prosecutions. It's a trend that could continue as long as racial justice issues garner national attention.

  • September 13, 2020

    LWV's Celina Stewart Talks Access To Justice Via Voting

    As the League of Women Voters' senior director of advocacy and litigation, Celina Stewart oversees a national case portfolio that has tripled in size during the pandemic. She spoke with Law360 about the intersection of access to justice and this year's election.

  • September 13, 2020

    Bill Would Loosen Pretrial Detention For Some Drug Charges

    A bipartisan bill recently unveiled in the U.S. Senate would eliminate the presumption that those facing federal drug charges must be detained before their trials start, with sponsors contending the measure would empower judges and prevent unnecessary incarcerations.

  • August 30, 2020

    New Orleans Threatens To Defund Court Over Fines And Fees

    Every year, the 390,000 residents of New Orleans pay an estimated $1.9 million in criminal fines and fees. But the City Council has passed a novel resolution threatening to choke off money to the courts if criminal fines continued to be levied.

  • August 30, 2020

    MoFo Helps Reverse 1994 Calif. Murder Conviction

    Police who buried evidence, a grossly unprepared defense attorney, and prosecutors who let officers lie under oath — for Arturo Jimenez, it all added up to 25 years in prison for a murder he didn't commit. Earlier this month, a Morrison & Foerster pro bono team helped clear his name.

  • August 30, 2020

    Rape Kit Backlogs Continue To Delay Justice For Victims

    The state of Virginia recently become the sixth state to clear its rape kit backlog. With thousands of untested kits in other states, sexual assault cases remain unprosecuted despite growing efforts to get through the mountains of DNA evidence. The brutal case of one victim in New York shows why such testing can be critical.

  • August 28, 2020

    Chicago Bracing For Post-Pandemic Foreclosure Surge

    As the Circuit Court of Cook County stares down an influx of eviction, foreclosure and other debt collection cases, the local legal community is using the calm before the storm to help Chicago residents mitigate their pandemic-era financial crises and potentially save their homes.

  • August 26, 2020

    Navajo Man Executed Despite Tribe's Calls For Clemency

    Navajo citizen Lezmond Mitchell was executed at an Indiana federal prison Wednesday for a 2001 double murder, a sentence carried out over the objections of many tribal advocates and the Navajo Nation itself, which opposes the death penalty.

Expert Analysis

  • USCIS Work Proposals Add To LGBTQ Asylum Seekers' Risks

    Author Photo

    Pending U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services proposals to prolong employment ineligibility and charge for employment authorization documents would be particularly detrimental to already-vulnerable LGBTQ asylum seekers, says Richard Kelley at the DC Volunteer Lawyers Project.

  • Understanding What Restorative Justice Is And Isn't

    Author Photo

    A hearing in the Jeffrey Epstein case featuring victim impact statements and a White House meeting between a hit-and-run driver and the victim's parents have been described as restorative justice, but the reality is more complex, says Natalie Gordon of DOAR.

  • 5 Most-Read Access To Justice Law360 Guests Of 2019

    Author Photo

    On topics ranging from public trial rights to electronic monitoring technology to the rules of evidence in the context of sexual harassment trials, 2019 brought a wide array of compelling commentary from the access to justice community.

  • Inside The Key Federal Sentencing Developments Of 2019

    Author Photo

    Raquel Wilson, director of the U.S. Sentencing Commission’s Office of Education and Sentencing Practice, discusses this year's developments in federal sentencing, including new legislation in the Senate and U.S. Supreme Court cases invalidating certain statutes.

  • ODonnell Consent Decree Will Harm Criminal Justice In Texas

    Author Photo

    In Odonnell v. Harris County, a Texas federal court ordered that misdemeanor offenders could be released without bail, marking a fundamental deterioration of the Texas criminal justice system, says attorney Randy Adler.

  • Judges Cannot Rehabilitate Offenders With Extra Prison Time

    Author Photo

    Although they may mean well, federal judges should stop attempting to help criminal defendants get into drug rehabilitation programs by unlawfully sending them to prison for longer than their recommended sentences, says GianCarlo Canaparo at The Heritage Foundation.

  • Time To Rethink License Suspensions Without Due Notice

    Author Photo

    In North Carolina, one in seven adults has a suspended driver’s license, but our research suggests that many of them never received actual notice of their license suspension, or of the court proceeding that led to it, making this a fundamentally unfair sanction, say Brandon Garrett, Karima Modjadidi and William Crozier at Duke University.

  • Changing The Way We Dialogue About Justice Reform

    Author Photo

    Dawn Freeman of The Securus Foundation discusses why humanizing the language used to discuss justice-involved individuals is a key aspect of reform and how the foundation’s upcoming campaign will implement this change in mainstream publications and on social media.

  • High Court Should Restore Sentencing Due Process

    Author Photo

    If the U.S. Supreme Court grants certiorari in Asaro v. U.S. and rules that sentencing judges cannot consider uncharged, dismissed and acquitted conduct, a peculiar and troubling oddity of criminal and constitutional law will finally be rectified, say criminal defense attorney Alan Ellis and sentencing consultant Mark Allenbaugh.

  • Book Review: Who's To Blame For The Broken Legal System?

    Author Photo

    The provocative new book by Alec Karakatsanis, "Usual Cruelty: The Complicity of Lawyers in the Criminal Injustice System," shines a searing light on the anachronism that is the American criminal justice system, says Sixth Circuit Judge Bernice Donald.

  • High Court Should Affirm 3-Strikes Rule For Prisoner Pleading

    Author Photo

    The U.S. Supreme Court in Lomax v. Ortiz-Marquez should hold that any case dismissed for failure to state a claim should count as a strike for purposes of Section 1915(g), which allows incarcerated people to file three complaints free of charge, says GianCarlo Canaparo at The Heritage Foundation.

  • Acquitted Conduct Should Not Be Considered At Sentencing

    Author Photo

    Congress should advance the Prohibiting Punishment of Acquitted Conduct Act, which seeks to explicitly preclude federal judges from a practice that effectively eliminates the democratic role of the jury in the criminal justice system, says Robert Ehrlich, former governor of Maryland.

  • Thank A Female Veteran With Access To Legal Services

    Author Photo

    Women returning from military deployment often require more legal assistance than their male counterparts, and Congress can alleviate some of these burdens by passing the Improving Legal Services for Female Veterans Act, says Rep. Susan Wild, D-Pa.

  • California Should Embrace Nonlawyer Providers

    Author Photo

    Despite criticisms from the legal profession, a California proposal to allow some legal service delivery by nonlawyers is a principled response to the reality that millions of Americans currently must face their legal problems without any help, says Chris Albin-Lackey, legal and policy director at the National Center for Access to Justice.

  • Calif. Law Offers New Hope For Child Sexual Abuse Victims

    Author Photo

    The recent passage of A.B. 218 in California — extending the statute of limitations for child sexual abuse cases — will pose challenges for the justice system, but some of the burdens posed by abuse will finally be shifted from survivors to accused abusers and the organizations that enabled them, says retired Los Angeles Superior Court judge Scott Gordon.

Can't find the article you're looking for? Click here to search the Access to Justice archive.
Hello! I'm Law360's automated support bot.

How can I help you today?

For example, you can type:
  • I forgot my password
  • I took a free trial but didn't get a verification email
  • How do I sign up for a newsletter?
Ask a question!