Elizabeth (Betsy) Gwin

Lecturer on Law

Veterans Legal Clinic,
Legal Services Center
122 Boylston St

617-390-2734

Biography

Betsy Gwin was appointed as a lecturer on law at HLS in 2018 and has taught courses on poverty law, veterans law and disability benefits. She currently works as a Senior Economic Justice Attorney at Massachusetts Law Reform Institute, where her work focuses on policy advocacy and impact litigation on safety net benefits. Betsy will be co-teaching the Poverty Law Workshop with Julie McCormack for academic year 2022-23.

From 2014 to 2022, Betsy worked as a Clinical Instructor at the Legal Services Center of HLS, where she was the Associate Director of the Veterans Legal Clinic. She supervised law students representing disabled veterans in administrative hearings and state and federal court litigation for veterans' benefits and discharge upgrades. 

Prior to joining the Legal Services Center, Betsy represented parents and children in child welfare proceedings against the Department of Children and Families as a Staff Attorney in the Child and Family Law Division of the Committee for Public Counsel Services in Springfield, Mass.

Betsy holds a B.A. in Anthropology, summa cum laude, from Syracuse University and a J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center, where she served as Editor-in-Chief of the Georgetown Journal on Poverty Law and Policy.

She lives in Jamaica Plain with her husband and two children.

Areas of Interest

Margaret Kuzma, Dana Montalto, Elizabeth Gwin & Daniel Nagin, Military Discharge Upgrade: Legal Practice Manual (American Bar Association 2021).
Categories:
Government & Politics
Sub-Categories:
Military & Veterans Law
Type: Book
Abstract
This landmark publication—the first of its kind in 30 years—enables advocates to successfully represent veterans who unjustly received less-than-honorable or other stigmatizing discharges. Written by attorneys from the Legal Services Center of Harvard Law School’s Veterans Legal Clinic and Connecticut Veterans Legal Center, this book helps bring honor and life-altering benefits to veterans.
Elizabeth Thornton & Betsy Gwin, High-Quality Legal Representation for Parents in Child Welfare Cases Results in Improved Outcomes for Families and Potential Cost Savings, 46 Fam. L.Q. 139 (2012).
Categories:
Family Law
,
Legal Profession
Sub-Categories:
Children's Law & Welfare
,
Legal Services
Type: Article
Abstract
This article outlines the improved outcomes for children and families associated with high-quality legal representation for parents in child welfare cases. It documents the cost savings demonstrated by three regional high-quality parent-representation programs (in New York City, Detroit, and Washington State) and explores their potential for tremendous savings. Section II describes these three programs and the effects they have had on child welfare outcomes in each region. Section III discusses the human and financial costs associated with placing children in foster care and the improved outcomes achieved by these programs. Section IV provides recommendations for expanding and evaluating parent-representation programs and their impact on child welfare outcomes and budgets.
Betsy Gwin, Housing Resources for Families at Risk of Separation, 30 Child L. Prac. 1 (2011).
Categories:
Discrimination & Civil Rights
,
Family Law
Sub-Categories:
Housing Law
,
Poverty Law
,
Children's Law & Welfare
Type: Article
Betsy Gwin, Lessons for Anti-Poverty Advocates From the Workplace Flexibility Movement: Improving Flexibility in Low-Wage Work and Access to Work Supports, 18 Geo. J. on Poverty L. & Pol’y 265 (2011).
Categories:
Discrimination & Civil Rights
,
Labor & Employment
Sub-Categories:
Poverty Law
,
Public Interest Law
,
Employee Benefits
,
Employment Practice
Type: Article

Academic Appointment and Employment History

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Education History

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Veterans Legal Clinic,
Legal Services Center
122 Boylston St

617-390-2734