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Faculty and Administration Profiles

Bruce A. Boyer

Title/s:  Curt and Linda Rodin Clinical Professor of Law and Social Justice
Co-Director, Civitas ChildLaw Center

Office #:  Corboy 1120

Phone: 312.915.7927

Email: bboyer@luc.edu


Professor Boyer is an expert in child welfare law who has litigated, taught, consulted and written extensively in the area of child abuse and neglect. He has represented clients in a wide range of proceedings including child welfare, adoption, juvenile delinquency, special education, disability hearings, and international child abduction, with his focus being primarily on issues of child maltreatment. He has designed and co-directed an intensive trial skills course for child advocates, and his publications include a book of training materials for child advocates, as well as numerous scholarly and practice-oriented articles. He has served as Chair of the American Bar Association's Steering Committee on the Unmet Legal Needs of Children and as a member of the Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism, and he has been elected as a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation in recognition of his "outstanding dedication to the welfare of the community and the highest principles of the legal profession." Before joining Loyola in 2001, Professor Boyer taught for 12 years at the Northwestern University Law School, where he helped in 1991 to establish Northwestern's nationally-renowned Children and Family Justice Center, a multidisciplinary project focused on Juvenile Court reform. He was an associate at the law firm of Jenner & Block before joining the Northwestern Law School faculty in 1989.


BA, Dartmouth, 1982
JD, Northwestern, 1986 

Program Areas

Child and Family Law Clinic
ChildLaw Trial Practice

Selected Publications

Professor Bruce Boyer's SSRN Website


“Foster Care Reentry Laws: Mending the Safety Net for Emerging Adults in the Transition to Independence,” Temple Law Review, Vol. 88 (2016)[article]

Representing Child-Clients with ‘Diminished Capacity’: Navigating an Ethical Minefield,” The Professional Lawyer, Volume 24 Issue 1 (2016)

Advocating for Children in Care in a Climate of Economic Recession: The Relationship Between Poverty and Child Maltreatment,” 6 Nw. J. L. & Soc. Pol’y. (2011) (w/ Amy Halbrook)[article]

Neglected, Abused and Dependent Children - Dispositions and Permanency, (co-authored with Anita Weinberg) in Illinois Juvenile Law and Practice (IICLE 2007)

Justice, Access to the Courts, and the Right to Counsel for Indigent Parents: The Continuing Scourge of Lassiter v. Department of Social Services, 36 Loy.U.Chi. L.J. 363 (2005), reprinted in 15 Temple Pol. & Civ. Rights L. Rev. 635 (2006), and Spreading Justice, Journal of the ABA Litigation Section (Spring 2007) [article]

The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara: Contemporary Lessons in the Child Welfare Wars, 45 Villanova L.Rev. 245 (2000)

Ethical Issues in the Representation of Parents in Child Welfare Cases, 64 Fordham L. Rev. 1621 (March 1996)

Jurisdictional Conflicts Between Juvenile Courts and Child Welfare Agencies: The Uneasy Relationship between Institutional Co-Parents, 54 Maryland L. Rev. 377 (1995)

Parental Rights v. Best Interests of the Child: A False Dichotomy in the Context of Adoption, 2 Duke J. Gender L. & Pol. 63 (1995) (with A.Appell)

Problems in Training the Child Advocate, National Institute for Trial Advocacy (1995) (with T. Geraghty)

Professional Service

Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute, Member, Board of Directors (2006-2014)

Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism (2005-2006)

Consultant, Nebraska Supreme Court Commission on Children and the Courts (2005)

American Bar Association, Steering Committee on Unmet Legal Needs of Children, Chair (2001- 2004) and Member (2000-01)

ABA Advisor to National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws, Drafting Committee on Standards for the Protection of Children from International Abduction (2004-2007)

Reporter, Illinois Supreme Court Special Committee on Professionalism (2002-2005)

Advisory Committee, ABA Center on Children and the Law (2001- 2006)

Advisory Board, ABA Child Custody Pro Bono Project (2001- 2008)

Recent Presentations and Programs

“Assuring a successful transition: What legal issues do transitioning youth face?,” ABA Section of Litigation Children's Rights Litigation Committee Teleconference, (November 2016)

“The Decision-Making Conundrum When Representing a Child,” American Bar Association Center for Professional Responsibility National Conference, Philadelphia PA (June 2016)

“Emerging Adults and Foster Care Re-entry,” Juvenile Law Center / Temple Law Review Symposium on Court-Involved Youth in the 21st Century, Philadelphia PA (October 2015)

Constitutional Issues in the termination of Parental Rights, Illinois Parents’ Attorney Network, Chicago IL (February 2014)

Adoption Reform, Rehoming, and the Regulation of Internet Advertising, Testimony to the Illinois House Committee on Adoption Reform, Chicago, IL (October 2013)

Fostering Justice, Third Nat’l Conference on the Right to Counsel for Abused and Neglected Children, Invitational Conference, Seattle, WA (June 2013)

American Immigration Lawyers’ Association, Chicago Chapter, Child Welfare and Immigration (May 2013)

Child Representative Panel, Cook County Domestic Relations Court, Handling International Child Abduction Cases, Chicago IL (September 2012)

Analyzing and Preparing Cases Involving Medically-Based Allegations of Child Abuse, National Association of Counsel for Children Annual Conference, Chicago IL (August 2012)

National Association of Counsel for Children Annual Conference, Recent Developments in Dependency Law, Chicago IL (August 2012)

“Reforming Courts to Meet the Needs of Abused and Neglected Children,” American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children Colloquium, Chicago, IL (June 2012)

“Recent Developments in Child Protection Law,” Cook County Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) Webinar (March 2012)

“Improving Outcomes for Children: The ABA Model Act Governing the Representation of Children in Abuse, Neglect and Dependency Proceedings,” Shephard Broad Law Center, Nova Southeastern University, Ft. Lauderdale, FL (February 2012)