Disability Law Project

The Disability Law Project (DLP) represents people with civil legal problems related to their disability. We provide a range of services from brief counsel and advice to full representation to eligible clients and their family members.

Legal issues we assist with include:

  • access to special education, health care, developmental services, assistive technology, and accessible transportation
  • disability-based discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodations
  • children’s SSI terminations based on disability
  • abuse, neglect and exploitation
  • issues related to being a victim of crime with a disability
  • guardianships

The DLP represents children with a mental health diagnosis in some proceedings including special education and access to mental health treatment and services. In most cases, we refer adults with a mental health diagnosis to Disability Rights Vermont.

We also engage in public policy advocacy to protect and expand the rights of all Vermonters with disabilities.
 

Right to Education

Dominic was a bright student and a good athlete, until the death of one of his parents. Shortly afterward, he began experiencing difficulty in school and showed signs of anxiety, depression, and self-harming behaviors. He also began to have conflicts with peers. He was suspended several times because of conflicts, with escalating lengths of suspension for each incident. He became more and more disconnected from school and started failing classes.

Dominic’s parent communicated with the school about his mental health difficulties. After another fight, he was told he could not return to school. When he had been excluded from school for more than a month without due process, the family contacted Vermont Legal Aid. We advised the family, assisted his swift return to school, and advocated for appropriate reintegration and education plans.


Name(s) and some details have been changed to protect anonymity and confidentiality.

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