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Domestic Violence Legal Empowerment and Appeals Project

 Throughout the country, battered mothers and children have been subjected to unjust court processes that have violated their most basic due process rights.  For example, battered mothers have had their children taken away from them by courts with little or no notice or opportunity to be heard and have been punished for trying to protect their children.  Because the problems are so widespread and state courts are failing to respond, DV LEAP and other leaders in the field have become convinced that this problem must be brought to the Supreme Court.  In December, 2007, DV LEAP and George Washington University School of Law hosted a well-received and successful Symposium that brought together leading Supreme Court laywers with domestic violence and child custody experts.  The Symposium was a unique opportunity to educate domestic violence lawyers and Supreme Court litigators on ways of increasing the chances of getting one of these cases up to the Supreme Court. DV LEAP will publish Best Practices arising from the Symposium in the coming months.