Guardian Ad Litem - How much do you know about it?

I am interested in finding out the role of a GAL, how important are they, are they attorneys, is it a great volunteer/internship opportunity for a law student, how effective are they, how difficult is their position, and lastly do you know of any messageboard or website dedicated to bringing GAL's together to exchange ideas or tips.

Thanks!!!!

Update:

This question pertains specifcally to the Housing Courts.

3 Answers

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  • Phil R
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    A Guardian ad Litem is almost always an attorney who is appointed by the Court to represent the legal interests of someone who is tangentially affected by an ongoing legal action. The importance depends on the state, and on how their family court system works. They are most common in divorce cases where there are children involved. Since they will be representing the children and/or people in court, they must be licensed to practice law. Most states have some provisions to allow law students to practice under supervision, but I doubt this is an area where law students would be utilized.

    Their position can be of varying degrees of difficulty, depending on the complexities of the case.

    If you are a law student, you might also want to investigate whether your state uses Court Appointed Special Advocates. The CASA program uses specially trained volunteers, who do NOT have to be lawyers, to speak for children in domestic cases, (divorce, neglect, etc)

    Source(s): 10+ years experience in the legal profession.
  • 1 decade ago

    In my state a GAL is an attorney. They put their name on a list that judges choose from. Meaning they are 99% of the time court appointed. They are to seek the best interest of the child(ren) in a court case, typically custody and abuse cases but in any case where a child has issue a GAL will be appointed. They have a HUGE amount of pull with judges as most judges are very interested in reserving the welfare of kids.

  • 1 decade ago

    Here is some information http://www.clerk.co.brevard.fl.us/ctadmin/guardian...

    They are not an attorney, but must go to classes and be

    approved whent the classes are finished. I did find out that

    a person trying to become a foster parent may not become a GAL. I was excused because I had applied to become a foster and they would not believe that it had been 8 yrs earlier. So, there went the good that I could have done for children.

    So, remember NOT to apply to become a foster parent also, or it will not work.

    Source(s): North Carolina GAL Program
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