Community of Practice

To register for the Community of Practice, visit NIWAP’s web library at

What is our Family Law Attorneys Community of Practice?

This Community of Practice (COP), funded by the Office of Violence against Women, convened by the National Immigrant Women’s Advocacy Project (NIWAP), is designed to facilitate learning between family law practitioners with diverse experiences and national experts to address common and recurring problems faced by immigrant survivors and their children in family court. Family law practitioners and expert faculty will engage in joint discussions and activities that will include sharing stories, tools, resources, experiences, strategies, problem solving and best practices; building relationships that enable participants with varying levels of expertise to learn from each other how to better represent immigrant survivors in family court cases. This COP is designed to develop and sustain ongoing learning opportunities to gain insights and feedback, access tools and resources, and build relationships with colleagues in similar roles across the country.

We will cover a range of topics as defined by the needs of the group. Example topics are likely to include: Issues that arise in immigrant survivors’ custody cases; Safety planning and family court case strategy for immigrant survivors who qualify for VAWA self-petitioning and U visas; Including evidence of DHS victim protection and parent protection from removal policies in family court cases; VAWA Confidentiality and family court discovery; DHS policies and limitations against courthouse enforcement by DHS agents; Economic relief for immigrant survivors; How understanding legal rights to public benefits improves family court representation of immigrant survivors; and Special issues in protection order cases involving immigrant survivors.

Why Be Involved in a Community of Practice?

As a member of this COP, you can expect:

  • Monthly 90 minute conference call conversations with peers that are tailored to your area of practice and relevant to your daily work that address your questions and interests.
  • Opportunities to build relationships with family law colleagues and experts nationwide who really understand your work, and can provide peer-to-peer mentoring on a variety of topics.
  • On-going interactions in-between calls with access to experts and family law nationwide through a private invitation only listserv that will be an online community forum that contains information on COP events; summary notes on all community calls and events; resources, tools, and descriptions of innovative solutions shared by family law colleagues and faculty experts; and discussion threads on pressing questions and topics.
  • Information from guest speakers and subject matter with expertise in family law issues and opportunities.

What else does the COP include?

  • 24/7 access to NIWAP’s extensive resource web library, ability to request creation of additional materials that will benefit your practice, contact lists for COP members from across the country, discussion forums, invitations to webinars, and opportunities to meet other COP members who are OVW grantees at in person trainings.
  • Regular check-ins with knowledgeable, trained facilitators and staff who want to know what’s on your mind, where you are strong, and where you could use help.
  • Up to an hour of work per month in preparation for or as a follow-up to our monthly conference calls.

Who Manages this Community of Practice?

This community of practice is made available through an Office of Violence Against Women (OVW) grant, to support and enhance the ability of OVW grantees and potential grantees to help immigrant survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, dating violence, human trafficking, child abuse and elder abuse. NIWAP manages this project as part of their mission to promote the development, implementation, and use of laws, policies, and practices that benefit immigrant survivors, women and children. To learn more about NIWAP visit our web library at

To learn more about this community, contact Rocio Molina at

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