Trauma-Informed Legal Services for Attorneys working with Victims of Crime

  • Dec 15, 2021 - 12 pm to 1 pm

Understanding the social and neurological effects of trauma will allow attorneys who represent crime victims to provide zealous representation in the face of increased challenges. An attorney who does not understand the impact of trauma may find these trauma symptoms to be insurmountable hurdles. However, after this training, an attorney will be able to recognize these behaviors as symptoms of trauma, rather than antagonistic choices of a client. For example, a victim of domestic violence may inhibit the progress of a case due to an inability to remember details. Through this training, an attorney will be able to identify this trauma symptom as such and be better equipped to competently and diligently represent a client facing these challenges, rather than identify the client as a challenge themselves. This comprehensive training provides attorneys with the skills and knowledge to better able to understand the facts of the case and provide ethical representation. This training will provide attorneys with an overview of the impact that traumatic events have on the brain, and an understanding of how to work with crime victims to account for that impact. For attorneys who work directly with victims of crime, understanding the complexity and specialized nature of the impact of trauma on a victim is imperative to provide competent and diligent representation.

Attorneys are used to working with individuals who are not actively in trauma. However, when a client is seeking legal services after a traumatic event, their engagement with the world around them, and particularly legal services, is impacted significantly by brain chemistry and the long-lasting impacts of trauma. Therefore, additional training is necessary to ensure that attorneys competently respond to the unique needs of survivors. A traumatic event, or events, can create lasting changes on a victim’s brain and result in challenges in communication, organization, and interpersonal boundaries and will require a specialized knowledge and training to diligently represent victims. A survivor is often unable to remember specific details; through this training an attorney will understand this symptom of trauma and know what questions to ask and how to solicit the information needed to provide competent representation.


12:00-12:05 Introduction 
12:05-12:15 Delving into Rule 1.1: Competence and Rule 1.3 Diligence 
12:15-12:35 Impact of Trauma on a Victim’s Brain and Resulting Symptoms 
12:35-12:55 Utilizing Tools for Trauma-Informed Representation 
12:55-1:00 Q&A

* 1 General, .6 Ethics CLE Credits *

Click the preferred date and time below to register. 

RMvlc can only guarantee accommodations for registrations submitted before December 7, 2021. Requests made after this date cannot be guaranteed, but our team will make every effort to accommodate late requests.