Canadian National Study to be replicated in the US

Canadian National Study to be replicated in the US

The Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System (IAALS has announced funding for the replication of our Canadian study with SRLs filed in family court in the United States.

The study will be conducted by researchers based at IAALS at the University of Denver. Researchers will conduct in-depth interviews with SRLs about their experiences, using the template developed by the Canadian study. NSRLP is acting as a consultant to the study which will commence in the Fall of 2014. Also planned is a stakeholder dialogue forum, just like our own (, for the end of the data collection period.


From the IAALS press release, June 26 2014:

“The project will be conducted by IAALS’ Honoring Families Initiative (HFI) and led by HFI Director Natalie Anne Knowlton and Director of Research Corina D. Gerety. The study builds upon similar qualitative research undertaken in Canada by Dr. Julie Macfarlane’s National Self-Represented Litigants Project. Dr. Macfarlane will provide her expertise to the IAALS study, which focuses on SRLs’ experiences using family courts—a different perspective from those within the legal system, like judges and lawyers, who already have a strong voice in the conversation.

‘No one in the U.S. has ever systematically and broadly asked self-represented litigants in the divorce system what the process was like for them and how the courts can help them navigate the justice system to achieve fair outcomes’ said IAALS Executive Director Rebecca Love Kourlis.”

Julie and Sue have already made one trip to Denver to work with the new study team, and will be returning again in July. NSRLP will be a full partner in the research project and will share the results with IAALS.

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