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Nation's First Post-J.D. Certificate in Family Law Launched at University of Baltimore School of Law

February 27, 2017
Contact: Public Affairs
Phone: 410.837.5739

The University of Baltimore School of Law and the Sayra and Neil Meyerhoff Center for Families, Children and the Courts (CFCC) have launched the nation's first Post-J.D. Certificate in Family Law, with classes starting in the fall 2017 semester. This innovative program is designed to meet a critical need for an enhanced and in-depth family law curriculum. The program exemplifies the UB School of Law's commitment to cutting-edge offerings in family law and to family law education reform.

The Post-J.D. Certificate in Family Law addresses a growing demand for a family law curriculum that offers a holistic blend of theory and practice, as described in a recent Family Court Review article by Prof. Barbara Babb. In the last few decades, the volume of family law cases has increased dramatically in jurisdictions nationwide. In 2015, nearly half—43 percent—of trial court filings in Maryland consisted of family law cases, exceeding the proportion of other civil and criminal cases. With a rise in self-represented litigants, and taking into consideration the multi-dimensional health and social issues experienced by families in crisis, family law cases have become more complex and more impactful. In addition, the present shift away from family law litigation toward alternative dispute resolution requires that family law attorneys gain an interdisciplinary education.

The Post-J.D. Certificate in Family Law is intended for both new attorneys beginning to practice family law and for attorneys seeking to add family law expertise to their practice areas. 

The 16-credit program can be completed over 12 months or at the student's own pace. Faculty include UB law professors, attorneys and judges, who bring decades of real-world insights and experience to the classroom. The coursework includes:

  • Fall 2017 classes: Psychology, Child Development and Mental Health in Family Law Matters (3 credits), Financial Foundations for Family Lawyers (3 credits)
  • Spring 2018 classes: The Craft of Problem-Solving and Advocacy in Family Law (3 credits), Understanding the Business of Practicing Family Law (3 credits)
  • Summer 2018 capstone: Working Through a Family Law Case—Start to Finish (4 credits)

The University of Baltimore School of Law is recognized for its commitment to supplementing student learning with the practical application of family law through clinical courses and experiential offerings, as well as through interdisciplinary requirements for its Family Law Area of Concentration. Appreciating the need for additional professional development opportunities for family law attorneys, CFCC assembled a Practitioners' Advisory Workgroup comprised of UB law professors, CFCC staff, judges, attorneys and other professionals who are experts in the field of family law. The workgroup examined the feasibility of the program and collaborated with UB law faculty to design the curriculum. 

For more information about the Post-J.D. Certificate in Family Law or to apply online, visit the program's website.

Read coverage about the certificate in The Daily Record.

Learn more about the Sayra and Neil Meyerhoff Center for Families, Children and the Courts.

Learn more about the University of Baltimore School of Law.

The University of Baltimore is a member of the University System of Maryland and comprises the College of Public Affairs, the Merrick School of Business, the UB School of Law and the Yale Gordon College of Arts and Sciences.


Last Published 6/9/16