Examining legal representation for foster youth: Perspectives of foster parents

J. Jay Miller, Jessica Donohue-Dioh, Jacquelynn F. Duron, Jennifer M. Geiger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Despite the importance of legal representation to foster youth, few studies have examined perceptions related to this representation. This study investigated foster parent (N = 792) perspectives about the legal representation of foster youth involved in dependency court proceedings. All participants hailed from one southeastern state. Variables of interest included the impact of legal representation of foster care experiences, quality of legal representation, and attorney-youth communication, among others. Findings indicate that participants perceived legal representation to be vitally important to shaping foster care experiences. However, participants expressed a level of neutrality when asked about attorney competence. As well, participants indicated that attorney-youth relationships and communication between attorneys and foster youth were inadequate. This paper discusses findings related to this study and delineates salient practice, policy, and research implications derived from the data.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104380
JournalChildren and Youth Services Review
StatePublished - Sep 2019

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019


  • Foster care
  • Foster youth
  • GAL
  • Guardian ad litem
  • Legal representation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science


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