Speaking Engagement

What Works, What Doesn’t

The Civil Legal Aid Crisis in Eviction Cases: Options and Opportunities

Hilton Washington, D.C. - Capitol Hill
525 New Jersey Ave NW
Washington, D.C.

Blank Rome partner Deborah Greenspan will serve as a panel moderator for The Civil Legal Aid Crisis in Eviction Cases: Options and Opportunities, presented by the RAND Institute for Civil Justice, the Berkeley Law Civil Justice Research Initiative, and the Berkeley Judicial Institute, being held in Washington, D.C., on Friday, June 23, 2023, from 8:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., with a reception to follow.


An average day in a typical housing court will see about 97 percent of tenants appearing without an attorney. Conversely, about 81 percent of landlords appear with legal representation. In an adversarial legal system that assumes both parties have representation, tenants can be at a severe disadvantage. This disparity persists despite research that shows the vast majority of tenants with representation experience positive outcomes. They avoid displacement or meet their goal of achieving additional time to move out, allowing them to locate long-term safe and stable housing. This program seeks to evolve the conversation surrounding the civil legal aid crisis and identify actionable strategies for change.

Deborah’s session, “What Works, What Doesn’t,” will take place from 10:15 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. and she will be joined on the panel by Matthew McNicholas (Partner, McNicholas & McNicholas LLP), Renee Danser (Associate Director of Research and Strategic Partnerships, Access to Justice Lab), Paul Heaton (Adjunct Economist, RAND Corporation; Professor and Academic Director, Quattrone Center for the Fair Administration of Justice, University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School), and Detrese Dowridge (Lead Tenant Organizer and Steering Committee Member, Baltimore Renters United).


This panel features conversation among leading academic researchers, housing law practitioners, and tenant rights’ organizers on what works and what doesn’t, from the viewpoints of both empirical research and everyday practice.

For more information or to register to attend, please visit the event webpage.