Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts

Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts

Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts (VLA) is both a generic term for legal service organizations located throughout the United States and the proper name of the organization in New York City. Founded in 1969, that organization is the oldest VLA in the country.



Chicago-based lawyers for the Creative Arts was founded in 1972. Bay Area Lawyers for the Arts (BALA) was founded two years later. When BALA expanded to Southern California, joining with Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts-Los Angeles, the organization was renamed California Lawyers for the Arts. Denver-based Colorado Lawyers for the Arts began operations in 1974, incorporated in 1979 and continues to serve that state's arts community.

Among the newer Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts organizations are New Jersey Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts, Inc. and Kansas City Volunteer Lawyers and Accountants for the Arts, both founded in 2004. More recent still, Tennessee Lawyers for the Arts, which opened in Nashville in 2005.

There are more than 30 VLA programs throughout the United States. Not a single organization, but rather a network united by similar missions, the organizations provide a broad range of free and low-cost legal services and educational programs addressing the needs of artists and arts organizations of all artistic disciplines.

Each VLA organization operates independently. Most are nonprofit organizations, while others are housed with arts councils, arts services organizations, bar associations or business for the arts programs.


Some of the programs provided include:

Legal services through referrals and, in some cases, on-site consultations; legal clinics; alternative dispute resolution services, including mediation and arbitration; accounting services; law student internships; advocacy; educational programs on such topics as contracts, copyright, estate planning, taxes and nonprofit incorporation; and publications on a broad range of topics.

Without these services provided by these organizations, many arts-related legal problems would go unresolved and many artists would be denied an opportunity to develop their creative abilities fully.



Beverly Hills Bar Association Barristers Committee for the Arts 300 S. Beverly Dr., Ste. 201 Beverly Hills, CA 90212 (310) 601-2422 [1]

California Lawyers for the Arts (Sacramento) 1127 Eleventh St. #214 Sacramento, CA 95814 (916) 442-6210 [2]

California Lawyers for the Arts (San Francisco) Fort Mason Center, Building C, Rm 255 San Francisco, CA 94123 (415) 775-7200 [3]

California Lawyers for the Arts (Santa Monica) 1641 18th St. Santa Monica, CA 90404 (310) 998-5590 [4]

San Diego Performing Arts League 110 West C St. #1414 San Diego, CA 92101 (619) 238-0700 x. 16 [5]


Colorado Lawyers for the Arts c/o Otten Johnson Robinson Neff & Ragonetti 950 17th St., Suite 1600 Denver, CO 80202 720-272-0961 [6]

District of Columbia

Washington Area Lawyers for the Arts 901 New York Ave. NW P1 Washington, DC 20005 (202) 289-4440 [7]


Legal Art 924 Lincoln Rd. #205 Miami Beach, FL 33139 (305) 674-8278 [8]

Florida Lawyers for the Arts, Inc. PO Box 2091 St. Petersburg, FL 33731 (727) 823-5809 [9]


Georgia Lawyers for the Arts 887 West Marietta St. NW, Suite J-101 Atlanta, GA 30318 (404) 873-3911 [10]


Lawyers for the Creative Arts 213 W. Institute Pl. Chicago, IL 60610 (312) 649-4111 [11]


Creative Arts Legal League 20 N. Meridian St. #500 Indianapolis, IN 46204 [12]


Iowa Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts c/o David J. Bright 122 South Linn St. Iowa City, IA 522240 [13]


Louisiana Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts 818 Howard St. New Orleans, LA 70113 (504) 523-2430 [14]


Maine Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts P.O. Box 17911 511 Congress St. Portland, ME 04112-17911 (207) 699-4600 info@mainevla.org [15]


Maryland Lawyers for the Arts 113 West North Avenue Baltimore, MD 21201 (410) 752-1633 [16]


Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts of Massachusetts 249 A St. Studio 14 Boston, MA 02210 (617) 350-7600 [17]


ArtServe Michigan 17515 West Nine Mile Rd. Southfield, MI 48075 (248) 557-8288 [18]


Springboard for the Arts 308 Prince St. St. Paul, MN 55101 (651) 292-4381 [19]


KC Volunteer Lawyers and Accountants for the Arts 115 W. 18th St. Kansas City, MO 64108 (816) 472-3535 [20]

St. Louis Volunteer Lawyers and Accountants for the Arts 6128 Delmar St. Louis, MO 63112 (314) 863-6930 [21]

New Hampshire

New Hampshire Business Committee for the Arts One Granite Pl. Concord, NH 03301 (603) 224-8300 [22]

New Jersey

New Jersey Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts PO Box 1520 Laurel Springs, NJ 08021 (856) 627-0428 [23]

New York

Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts 1 E. 53rd St., 6th Fl. New York, NY 10022 (212) 319-2787 [24]

North Carolina

North Carolina Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts PO Box 26513 Raleigh, NC 26513 (919) 699-6285 [25]


Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts Program Cleveland Bar Association 1301 E 9th St. Cleveland, OH 44114 (216) 696-3525 [26]


Northwest Lawyers and Artists 621 SW Morrison Portland, OR 97205 (503) 295-2787


Philadelphia Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts (Arts and Business Council) 200 S. Broad St. Philadelphia, PA 19102 (215) 790-3836 x1 [27]

Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council 707 Penn Ave. #2 Pittsburgh, PA 15222 (412) 391-2060 [28]

Rhode Island

Ocean State Lawyers for the Arts PO Box 19 Saunderstown, RI 02874 (401) 789-5686 [29]


Tennessee Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts 1507 16th Avenue South Nashville, TN 37212 (615) 298-9309 [30]


Texas Accountants & Lawyers for the Arts 1540 Sul Ross Houston, TX 77006 (713) 526-4876 [31]


Washington Lawyers for the Arts 6512 23rd St. NW #320 Seattle, WA 98117 (206) 328-7053 [32]


Arts Wisconsin PO Box 1054 Madison, WI 53701 (608) 255-8316 [33]


  • Figueras, Ligaya. Low-Cost Legal and Accounting Assistance for Artists, Art Calendar, October 2008

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