Palmer Heenan

  • Hosted by Central Virginia Legal Aid Society
  • Sponsored by Housing Justice Program
  • Service location Richmond, Virginia
  • Law school Georgetown University Law Center
  • Issue area Housing/Homelessness
  • Fellowship class year 2019
  • Program Housing Justice Program

The Project

There is a serious lack of appropriate, safe, affordable housing across the nation and there are few places other than Richmond where that’s felt more keenly. With an eviction rate among the highest in the country, there’s a desperate need for systemic advocacy and community outreach to help stymie the flood of evictions along with the profound direct and collateral consequence they bring. Even more problematically, there is an imbalance in access to the courts: the vast majority of tenants are unrepresented while the majority of landlords have lawyers.

Palmer will provide legal advice directly to low-income tenants facing eviction or other adverse housing actions. He will work to educate and reach out to residents in the Richmond area to help ensure they know their rights, and will identify at least one systemic housing issue that is of concern to tenants in the Richmond area that could be addressed through impact litigation and/or an advocacy campaign. Palmer will collaborate with the other local organizations to address systemic housing issues.

Until you're here on a day to day basis, you don't realize the magnitude of the eviction crisis. Before the Housing Justice Program, there were no full-time housing attorneys. Now, we have the opportunity to be proactive, not just reactive.

Palmer Heenan /
2019 Fellow in the Housing Justice Program


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Evictions continue in Virginia despite CDC order extension

Millions still available for people who can't make rent

Trying to enjoy the holidays with eviction looming in the new year

Housing Justice Program Scores Big Win for Families Facing Eviction

Tenants, attorneys take issue with housing program run by Richmond nonprofit

Richmond Judge Dismisses 31 RRHA Eviction Cases

They don’t have to move’: Richmond evictions halted during judicial emergency

Fighting the Eviction Crisis in the Greater Richmond Region

Unable to evict, some landlords accuse tenants of abandoning homes they’re still living in

As COVID-19 Safeguards End, Eviction Wave Begins

‘It’s going to be a crisis’

Confusion over CARES Act protections hang over Henrico Civil Court eviction proceedings

Lawyer: Here's what to tell a judge to help avoid eviction during COVID-19 pandemic

Even with federal moratorium, thousands still face eviction in Richmond

Area attorneys train volunteer lawyers in tenant's rights, eviction law

How a new CDC measure could help those at risk of losing their home

The (Il)legality of Richmond's Housing Crisis

Landlords ask Supreme Court of Virginia to make eviction proceedings easier

LMU Law Review to Host Virtual Symposium "Disaster Lawyering in the Age of COVID"

For Black Families, Evictions Are Still At A Crisis Point — Despite Moratorium

Black Renters Face A Disproportionate Amount Of Evictions Because Of Pandemic

In Richmond, VA, eviction burden weighs heavier on Black and Brown residents

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