Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts

The Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts of Massachusetts provides legal services, advice, and education programming to artists and cultural organizations in Massachusetts. The VLA accomplishes its mission through the work of a panel of nearly 400 attorneys who volunteer their time and services to provide legal counsel, education, and organizational support to the Massachusetts arts community.

The Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts is supported by a team of people dedicated to preserving the arts in Massachusetts. If you are interested in working with the VLA, we have a number of internship opportunities available. Please click here to learn more about the internship programs the VLA offer.

Highlights of Past VLA Cases

Massachusetts Fine Art Consignment Law, General Laws 104 A

When Boston Corporate Art declared bankruptcy in 2003, over a thousand pieces of consigned artwork were locked in a warehouse to await sale at auction. The VLA's efforts reunited over 70% of the pieces with the 200 artists who created them. (Haley & Steele) (Peter Caruso of Caruso & Caruso LLP; George Field of Verrill Dana LLP; and Brenda Ulrich formerly of Edwards Angell Palmer & Dodge LLP)

Street Performers' Right to Perform

After a thirty-year battle , the VLA's involvement helped reopen Boston’s streets to performers. A landmark Federal Court decision repealed a number of city laws prohibiting public performances by declaring such laws unconstitutional under the First Amendment.

The VLA program is supported in part by a grant from the Boston Cultural Council, a local agency  funded by the Massachusetts Cultural Council and administrated by the Mayor's Office of Arts, Tourism, and Special Events.