HLAB obtains six-figure settlement in family case 

On March 23, the Harvard Legal Aid Bureau obtained a judgment enforcing a settlement agreement drafted by Vandana Apte, HLS ’23, for her client at the Bureau.

The agreement secured payment of over $60,000 in child support arrears for HLAB’s client, as well as a pension fund division that will grant HLAB’s client another five-figure sum. The agreement also enforced a continuation of child support at over $300 per week.

HLAB had originally represented the client on her divorce matter in 2014. Vandana came onto the case in 2021, and her role involved determining the financial situations of the parties and proposing a fair division of assets, which she then drafted in the settlement agreement.

Vandana notes that she learned a lot about Qualified Domestic Relations Orders and divisions of assets, as well as enforcing child support orders while being consistent with HLAB’s anti-carceral policy.

“Vandana did an incredible job with this case and was persistent to secure this successful outcome,” says Jacob Chin, HLAB Clinical Instructor. “She spent the last two years building trust with the client, reading through years of case notes, records, and court documents.” The case had three open dockets at the time Vandana came onto the case, according to Jacob, and she has since resolved them all with her advocacy.

For more information, please contact the Harvard Legal Aid Bureau at HLABcomms@gmail.com.