Ashley Carter

  • Hosted by DC Volunteer Lawyers Project
  • Sponsored by Greenberg Traurig, LLP, Steptoe & Johnson LLP
  • Service location Washington, District of Columbia
  • Law school The George Washington University Law School
  • Issue area Domestic Violence
  • Fellowship class year 2019
  • Program Design Your Own Fellowship

The Project

Ashley created a legal clinic for survivors of domestic violence, child abuse, sexual assault, and stalking who seek Civil Protection Orders in Washington, DC.

Over 5,500 Civil Protection Order cases are filed in Washington, DC each year. Unfortunately, the majority of individuals seeking protection cannot afford to hire an attorney. Pro se litigants may not know how to accomplish tasks that may be simple for an attorney, such as requesting a new hearing date, completing service of process, amending pleadings, or introducing evidence at trial. An attorney providing brief services and legal advice can help these survivors obtain much-needed protection from their abusers.

Fellowship Highlights

Through her Fellowship, Ashley established the Domestic Violence Protection Order Clinic in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia. Ashley provided more than 400 clients with brief services through the clinic. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the clinic transitioned into a virtual model, which succeeded in reaching and assisting hundreds of survivors as they attempted to escape violence during the pandemic. Ashley provided more than 50 clients with full representation in Civil Protection Order cases, and many other clients received full representation from DCVLP pro bono attorneys through referrals from the clinic. Through the course of the Fellowship, Ashley recruited and trained over 160 pro bono attorneys. Ashley expanded the reach and impact of her work through publishing three articles on domestic violence issues, appearing on a national television program discussing domestic violence during the pandemic, and presenting as a panelist at the District of Columbia Bench and Bar Conference on how the pandemic reshaped access to justice in the domestic violence context.

Next Steps

Ashley will remain at the DC Volunteer Lawyers Project as a supervising attorney, where she will supervise pro bono attorneys in domestic violence cases and will work to expand DCVLP’s policy and appellate advocacy. Ashley looks forward to maintaining the clinic through the recruitment of pro bono attorneys.


Improving Protections For Immigrant Domestic Abuse Victims

Remote Court Procedures Can Help Domestic Abuse Victims

Tour of D.C. courthouse highlights opportunities to help victims of domestic violence

DC Volunteer Lawyers Project advocating for victims of domestic violence

A Courtroom Conundrum: Protecting Privacy During Remote Hearings

Improving Protections For Immigrant Domestic Abuse Victims

I am dedicated to creating safety and stability for low-income individuals who have been impacted by violence.

Ashley Carter /
Equal Justice Works Fellow

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