Guardian Ad Litem Training

Washburn Law's Children and Family Law Center is offering a Guardian Ad Litem (GAL) Training CLE on Friday, May 17, 2019. This CLE in intended for those practitioners who often serve in the GAL capacity and want to expose themselves to applied and advanced topics and concepts in the practice area. Faculty for the CLE all have actively worked in the area and will address both best practices and real life contemplations of practice issues. Participants will leave the CLE better able to serve as a GAL.

This program will also be available as a webinar for those who would like to attend online (see "Information for Online Attendees" elsewhere on this page).

Friday, May 17, 2019

8:00 a.m. – Registration

8:25 a.m. – Introductions and Opening Remarks

8:30-9:20 a.m.
A View From the Bench: Supreme Court Rule 110A Guardians ad Litem

  • The Honorable Bethany Roberts, Douglas County Judge Pro Tem (Lawrence, Kansas)

Judges expect (and need) the guardian ad litem to perform certain functions. Judge Roberts will explain what a good GAL does and provide a sample "report" as required under Supreme Court Administrative Order #110A.

9:20-10:35 a.m.
Journey through the Child in Need of Care System

  • Emily Hartz, Sloan Law Firm (Lawrence and Topeka, Kansas)

A lawyer guardian ad litem must be appointed for a child who is in the child in need of care system. The program provides an overview of the CINC system and the role of the GAL and other professionals in the system.

10:35 a.m. – Break

10:45 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
Child Development and Interviewing Children

One of the most important functions of the GAL is getting the child’s voice heard in the proceedings, whether custody or child in need of care. Dr. Nichols will explain interviewing techniques for children of varying stages of development.

12:00 p.m. – Lunch (provided)

1:00-2:15 p.m.
Child Custody – Best Interest Factors and Role of Child’s Preference; Role of Mental Health Professionals

This session will address the issues of balancing the child’s preference with the best interest analysis in these cases and what the mental health professional's role should be, and often is, in that process. Participants will take away some direction in these areas and issues.

2:15 p.m. – Break

2:30-3:20 p.m.
Hearing Children’s Voices in Mediation and other ADR Processes

  • Larry R. Rute, Associates in Dispute Resolution, LLC (Topeka, Kansas and Kansas City, Missouri)

Mediation is a highly effective ADR methodology which has proven useful in resolving up to 75% of family law cases involving children. In recent years, children are being included in mediation, both in the child custody context and in dependency cases.

3:20-4:10 p.m.
Ethical Considerations for Guardians ad Litem and Child’s Attorneys (Ethics)

  • Linda Elrod, Richard S. Righter Distinguished Professor of Law and Director, Children and Family Law Center, Washburn University School of Law

The guardian ad litem is a lawyer who is representing the best interests of the child. Special ethical considerations apply.

4:10 p.m. – Adjourn

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General Information

Friday, May 17, 2019

Washburn University
School of Law, Room 120
Parking: north, south and east of the law school.
Get Directions and Maps

Registration Fee
  • $99

Currently enrolled law school students are welcome to attend at no charge (but students must register).

See Washburn W-9 (taxpayer ID)

CLE Credit

Approved by the Kansas Continuing Legal Education Commission for 7.5 CLE hours (including 1.0 hour ethics).

Information for Online Attendees

This CLE will be streamed using Adobe Connect, a Flash-based product. Some institutions/agencies block Flash-based products on their network. There is no charge to use Adobe Connect. Return to this page on the day(s) of the CLE and click the link that appears on the page; the link will also sent to online attendees via email.

Online attendance at this program falls under the Kansas Continuing Legal Education Commission's "Live programming" definition; 12 CLE credit hours may be earned through online attendance each compliance period. See Rule 802(k) and Rule 803(a) (196 KB PDF; requires Adobe Acrobat Reader) at the Kansas CLE Commission website for more information.

Nontraditional programming limitations may vary in other jurisdictions; it is the responsibility of the attendee seeking credit to verify any limitations.


If you cannot attend the program you may send a substitute. If you cancel your registration at least two (2) business days prior to the seminar, your registration fee will be refunded. After that date, non-attending registrants will receive the course materials. Please allow two weeks for delivery. The sponsors reserve the right to cancel this program and return all fees.

Assistance For Special Needs

If you require special services or auxiliary aids to assist you while attending the event, please call Donna Vilander at (785) 670-1105.