Juvenile Law Center

January 23, 2015

Announcing Juvenile Law Center's National Search for a New Executive Director

Juvenile Law Center, the nation’s oldest non-profit public interest law firm for children, is seeking a new Executive Director.
Read more >

January 10, 2014

"Kids for Cash" Judge Ciavarella Found Liable for Enactment of Zero-Tolerance Policies and Violation of Kids' Constitutional Rights in Federal Civil Rights Action

Late yesterday, the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania granted plaintiffs’ motion for partial summary judgment against former Luzerne County Juvenile Court Judge Mark Ciavarella, the judge at the center of the now infamous 'kids for cash' scandal. Specifically, U.S. District Court Judge A. Richard Caputo found that Ciavarella violated the constitutional right of the children who appeared before him to an impartial tribunal, as guaranteed by the Fifth, Sixth, and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution. Ciavarella is currently serving a 28 year federal prison sentence following his criminal conviction in February 2011 on charges arising out of the scandal.

Read more >

November 07, 2013

Juvenile Court Judge Finds Juvenile Sex Offender Registration Law Unconstitutional Under State and Federal Law

In a landmark ruling for Pennsylvania, York County Court of Common Pleas Judge John C. Uhler ruled yesterday that Pennsylvania's recently enacted law requiring that juveniles convicted of sexual offenses be subjected to lifetime sex offender registration, violates their rights under various provisions of the Pennsylvania and United States Constitutions, as well as Pennsylvania's Juvenile Act.

Read more >

October 31, 2013

Pennsylvania Supreme Court Fails to Follow U.S. Supreme Court Opinion Finding Mandatory Life Without Parole Sentences for Juveniles Unconstitutional

We are deeply disappointed that the Pennsylvania Supreme Court has decided not to follow the ruling of the U.S. Supreme Court in Miller v. Alabama, that juveniles convicted of homicide can no longer receive mandatory sentences of life without parole. The decision also ignores the trend in both state and federal courts to find Miller retroactive.

Read more >

October 17, 2013

Juvenile Law Center Announces Partial Settlement in Luzerne County Juvenile Litigation

Juvenile Law Center has announced that a partial settlement with a second set of defendants has been reached in the Luzerne County juvenile-court civil litigation.

Read more >

April 30, 2013

Juvenile Law Center Named Best "Law" Website in the 17th Annual Webby Awards

The International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences announced today that Juvenile Law Center has been named the Best “Law” Website in the 17th Annual Webby Awards. Hailed as the “Internet's highest honor” by The New York Times, The Webby Awards, presented by the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences (IADAS), is the leading international award honoring excellence on the Internet. 

Read more >

December 20, 2012

First "Kids for Cash" Settlement Approved

On December 14, 2012, U.S. District Judge A. Richard Caputo gave final approval to a $17.75 million settlement in the Luzerne County, PA “kids for cash” cases with real estate developer Robert Mericle.

Read more >

August 16, 2012

California Supreme Court Issues Landmark Ruling Prohibiting Lengthy Sentences for Juveniles Convicted of Non-Homicide Crimes

The California Supreme Court issued a landmark ruling today in People v. Caballero, holding that a term of years sentence that is effectively a de facto life without parole sentence for a juvenile in a non-homicide case violates the U.S. Supreme Court's 2010 decision in Graham v. Florida

Read more >

July 02, 2012

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett Takes Major Step to Help Foster Youth Succeed

Pennsylvania foster youth—who often face enormous obstacles to success as adults—will receive a major boost when Governor Tom Corbett signs new legislation into law. The new laws will enable Pennsylvania to enhance support for older foster youth, encourage adoption and save money. 

Read more >

June 25, 2012

U.S. Supreme Court Strikes Down Mandatory Life Without Parole Sentences for Youth

PHILADELPHIA, PA  (June 25, 2012) – The United States Supreme Court ruled today in Miller v. Alabama and Jackson v. Hobbs that states may no longer impose mandatory life without parole sentences on juveniles under the age of 18 convicted of homicide crimes. Writing for the 5-4 majority, Justice Elena Kagan said, “Such a scheme prevents those meting out punishment from considering a juvenile’s ‘lessened culpability’ and greater ‘capacity for change.’” (Read the Court's opinion here.)

Read more >

Receive Press Releases and Media Advisories

Support Juvenile Law Center

One of the most important lessons from our 40 years of experience is that children involved with the justice and foster care systems need zealous legal advocates. Your support for our work is more important now than ever before. Support