Family Law Center

Family Law Center

Family Law Center

Mother and son

Students have an opportunity to engage in issues relating to families, gender and sexual orientation outside of the classroom through a range of extracurricular activities.

Academic Journal

Virginia Journal of Social Policy & the Law

This student-edited law journal publishes articles exploring the intersection of law and social policy issues. Recognizing the significance of the law and legal institutions on social conditions, the journal provides a forum in which to examine contending legal, judicial and political perspectives. Among the issues the journal addresses are: health care policy, welfare reform, criminal justice, voting rights, civil rights, family law, employment law, gender issues, education and critical race theory. Journal Website

Student Organizations

Advocates for Life at Virginia Law

AFL brings together law students eager to protect the fundamental right to life and fosters balanced and open discussion about the issue in the legal community. AFL educates and trains law students about the jurisprudence of a pro-life ethic, the attacks on the right to life and the best strategies to protect women and children from abortion and the vulnerable from embryo-destructive research, assisted suicide and euthanasia. By building a culture of courage and support among pro-life law students and lawyers, AFL promotes a legal environment that values and upholds the dignity of human life. 

Child Advocacy Research and Education

CARE brings together law students interested in taking a legal approach to issues affecting children, including education, juvenile justice, foster care and immigration. Through partnerships with local and national children’s law and advocacy organizations and CARE-generated projects, we assist in the direct representation of children and strive for broader systemic change through policy research and advocacy.

Domestic Violence Project

The Domestic Violence Project is a pro bono project led by law students. DVP addresses the problem of domestic violence both directly (through pro bono service) and indirectly (through educational efforts to raise awareness and understanding of the issue). DVP educates the Law School community about issues of domestic violence through speakers, discussion panels, films and other events. DVP volunteers also monitor domestic violence-related criminal justice proceedings in Charlottesville, Albemarle and several other surrounding jurisdictions through the Shelter for Help in Emergency's Court Monitoring Program, and assist the Commonwealth's Attorney Offices of Charlottesville and of Albemarle in their prosecution of domestic violence cases by interviewing victims of domestic violence through the Commonwealth's Attorney's Project. In addition, DVP participants volunteer for the Central Virginia Legal Aid Society Pro Bono Domestic Violence Project, organize police ride-alongs and more.

Feminist Legal Forum

The Feminist Legal Forum is dedicated to advancing feminist discussion and awareness at the Law School, and provides a place for law students to examine legal issues that affect women, clarify what feminism means to young lawyers, and unite to eradicate sexism in the legal profession and within the Law School.

If/When/How: Lawyering for Reproductive Justice at UVA Law

If/When/How is a pro-choice, pro-information student organization that educates, organizes and supports law students to ensure that a new generation of advocates will be prepared to protect and expand reproductive rights as basic civil and human rights. It is the organization’s position that reproductive justice will exist when all people can exercise the rights and access the resources they need to thrive and to decide if, when and how to create and sustain their families with dignity and free from discrimination, coercion or violence.

Lambda Law Alliance

Lambda Law Alliance provides an academically and socially supportive network for members of sexual minorities and their allies enrolled in the Law School. The organization also heightens awareness throughout the Law School, as well as the University community, about legal issues relevant to sexual minorities. Lambda informs the community of its interests and concerns and pushes for the expansion of equal civil rights for all. 

Virginia Law Families

Virginia Law Families supports and promotes the interests of students facing the challenges of attending law school while raising children. Among its primary objectives are promoting social interaction and the sharing of information, including among both current and prospective parents. Issues of specific concern include child care, medical resources and family activities or community events, with particular emphasis on low-cost options to help those on a tight budget. Virginia Law Families also supports the Law School admissions staff by encouraging individuals with families to apply for admission and attend the School of Law, and by serving as an information resource for potential attendees. 

Virginia Law Women

VLW is primarily designed to support and promote women in their endeavors and to understand their unique challenges by providing forums for them to interact with faculty, administration and other students; providing opportunities to create social networks with their fellow members; and exposing members to women working in professional, legal capacities. 

Women of Color

Women of Color provides social support to the diverse population of women at the Law School; promotes the welfare of its members through educational, professional, cultural, social and community service programs; and provides a forum for the discussion of issues affecting women of color in the Law School and the University community as a whole. Women of Color organizes service projects and fundraisers benefiting the University community and the greater Charlottesville-Albemarle community, social gatherings to promote fun and friendship, and open communication and involvement with the administration, professors, other student organizations and the undergraduate community.

Carly Wasserman