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When Will They Ever Learn? Educating to End Domestic Violence - A Law School Report

NCJ Number
Date Published
123 pages
Incorporating domestic violence issues in law school curricula may improve ethical standards of the legal profession and produce better representation for victims.
Many disciplinary committees and courts across the United States have already begun to address the professional consequences for lawyers who commit acts of domestic violence against their intimate partners. Serious treatment of lawyers who perpetrate domestic violence upholds ethical standards and improves the criminal justice system's ability to provide justice for domestic violence victims. The increasing intolerance of lawyers and judges who commit or condone domestic violence suggests the legal system has begun to treat violence against intimate partners as a criminal matter. Despite this shift, however, many legal professionals have not been adequately trained in appropriate legal interventions for domestic violence. By integrating domestic violence issues into law school curricula, law schools can give lawyers the tools they need to effectively assist victims and to improve the legal system's response to family violence. Advantages of integrating domestic violence issues in law school curricula are noted, along with ways in which domestic violence legal issues can be included in courses. Consideration is paid to linking law school programs and the community and to challenges associated with incorporating domestic violence legal issues in legal education courses. Supplemental information on domestic violence law school programs and domestic violence organizations is appended. Endnotes

Date Published: January 1, 1997