Editor’s Note: James (Jim) Sandman, president emeritus of the Legal Services Corporation, is chair of IAALS’ board of advisors and executive committee. Trusted partners are key to IAALS’ process, and we’re excited to showcase their passion and expertise. In this Q&A, Jim discusses access to justice, why IAALS’ work is essential, and the one thing he can’t live without.Why is
Continue Reading Q&A with Jim Sandman, Chair of IAALS' Executive Committee

In October 2022, the National Center for State Courts (NCSC) commissioned its ninth State of State Courts survey of one thousand registered voters to gauge levels of public trust and confidence in our judiciary and broader institutions.Results revealed that public trust and confidence across a swath of governmental and societal institutions—from local police departments to state legislatures to governors—is on
Continue Reading NCSC Survey Reveals Continued Declining Trust in Courts, Support for Remote Hearings

When I joined IAALS in 2012, I knew I was joining an organization that was critical to solving the toughest problems in the American legal system. Over time, I have come to understand much more about the scope of those problems, as well as the urgency with which they need to be addressed. And I have seen firsthand that IAALS
Continue Reading Reflecting on 2022 and Setting the Stage for Impact in 2023

Author’s Note: the views and opinions presented here reflect those of Ralph Baxter’s essay on regulatory reform and do not necessarily represent the views or opinions of the author or IAALS. Part 1 in this series explores the other side of this debate.The reform of key provisions in the regulatory scheme governing the practice of law is a hot topic
Continue Reading A Debate on Nonlawyer Participation Part II: Ralph Baxter Explores the State Bar Obligation to Improve Access to Justice

Author’s Note: the views and opinions presented here reflect those of Stephen Younger’s essay on regulatory reform and do not necessarily represent the views or opinions of the author or IAALS. Part II in this series will explore the other side of this debate.There is a growing debate on regulatory reform happening across the United States. The latest forum for
Continue Reading A Debate on Nonlawyer Participation, Part I: Stephen Younger Warns that Nonlawyer Ownership Is Not the Solution to the Justice Gap

In November, several law schools made the decision to withdraw from the U.S. News & World Report rankings, reigniting conversation about the publication’s role in perpetuating inequality in legal education. Yale Law School was the first to announce its decision to no longer participate in the rankings, followed by Harvard, UC Berkeley, Georgetown, Columbia, and Stanford, among others. In
Continue Reading Law Schools Pull Out of U.S. News Rankings, Citing Harm to Legal Education

IAALS, the Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System at the University of Denver, announced today that it released its new Allied Legal Professionals landscape report, along with an accompanying online Knowledge Center. With generous support from the Sturm Family Foundation, this project seeks to help standardize a new tier of legal professionals nationally, with the
Continue Reading IAALS Releases New Allied Legal Professionals Landscape Report and Resource Center in an Effort to Increase Legal Options for the Public

This November, thousands of judges across 38 states find themselves on the ballot. Some are engaged in partisan races to secure their seats, while others face nonpartisan races or uncontested retention elections. And while judicial elections are often characterized as low-salience, “sleepy” affairs, there is reason to believe that this year judicial races will capture more voter attention than usual.One
Continue Reading In 2022, Judges Are On, Around, and Behind the Ballot

On October 6, 2022, IAALS co-hosted the eighth session of the Redesigning Legal Speaker Series, which dove into the innovative and creative changes judges have applied to make courts more accessible. “Redesigning Legal: Improving Access to Courts and Judges” featured a panel including Judge Jeanne Robison, Salt Lake City Justice Court, Utah; and Judge Scott Schlegel, 24th Judicial District,
Continue Reading IAALS Panel Discusses Bridging the Gap between Courts and People

Utah and Arizona are pioneers in the regulatory reform space. In Utah, the state supreme court and the Utah Bar Association worked together to launch the first legal regulatory sandbox, where authorized entities can offer products and services that would not have been permitted under the traditional rules of professional conduct. The Arizona Supreme Court took a different approach to
Continue Reading A Tale of Two States: First-of-its-Kind Data-Driven Analysis of Legal Regulatory Reforms

Resources for consumers, lawyers, and courts included in one of the most robust information databases on limited scope legal representation.IAALS, the Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System at the University of Denver, released Unbundled Legal Services in the New Normal—a new report highlighting key takeaways from the national 2021 conference—in partnership with The Chicago Bar
Continue Reading IAALS Launches New Report and Online Resource Center for Unbundled Legal Services, Offering New Tools that Lead to Access to Justice

On July 28, IAALS co-hosted the seventh session of the Redesigning Legal Speaker Series. This panel’s discussions delved into alternative lawyer licensing programs, how they differ from the current bar exam, what some jurisdictions are already testing, and how these alternatives might impact the profession. “Redesigning Legal: Redesigning How We License New Lawyers” featured a panel including:

  • Logan Cornett,


Continue Reading IAALS Panel Explores Alternative Paths to Legal Licensure

IAALS has opened the nomination window for the 2023 Alli Gerkman Legal Visionary Award, which recognizes innovators who have made significant impacts early in their legal careers toward making the American legal system work better for everyone. Nominations will be accepted through December 1, and the award will be presented in April 2023.The award is designed to encourage and
Continue Reading Nomination Window Opens to Award the 2023 Legal Visionary

Over two hundred years ago, on September 17, 1787, members of the Constitutional Convention signed the United States Constitution. Each year on this day, we celebrate Constitution Day and the establishment of our government and the guarantee of our rights. The preamble to the Constitution begins with the important first words: “We the people of the United States, in order to
Continue Reading Constitution Day 2022: From Establishing Justice to Realizing it for All

The comment below was submitted by IAALS to the Colorado Supreme Court on September 14, 2021, in support of the Colorado Licensed Legal Paraprofessionals Program.On behalf of IAALS, the Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System, we wish to commend the Colorado Supreme Court, the Advisory Committee on the Practice of Law, and the Providers of Alternative Legal
Continue Reading IAALS’ Comment in Support of the Colorado Licensed Legal Paraprofessionals Program