Family Services

Family Services

The Betty Sams Christian Child Health Advocacy Program (CHAP) at the University of Virginia is a medical-legal collaboration between the University of Virginia Children's Hospital, the University of Virginia School of Law, and the Legal Aid Justice Center that provides legal assistance to families with children who receive their health care at the University of Virginia. Volunteers from the Legal Aid Justice Center are available to help families with a variety of legal problems that affect their health and well-being.

Who is eligible to receive legal assistance?

All families whose children receive their health care at the University of Virginia.

When are legal aid staff available to help?

Ask your child's doctor for a referral or contact Greg Nelsen, Social Work, at 924-5851, to arrange for a referral.

What if I need help right away?

For an urgent problem that cannot wait, contact Greg Nelsen, Social Work, at 924-5851, to arrange for assistance.

What kinds of problems can the Child Health Advocacy Program help with?

  • Benefits - Medicaid/FAMIS, food stamps, Medicare, WIC, unemployment Benefits, TANF,Social Security/Disability. It is especially important to get help if you are in the process of losing your benefits, or if you have recently lost these benefits, or if have had your benefits terminated.

  • Housing - It is especially important to get help if you have major problems with the condition of your home (leaky roof, broken heat or plumbing, etc.) or are being evicted from your home.

  • Employment - Wage claims, job termination or discrimination, unemployment insurance

  • School - special education, 504 plans, children with special health care needs at school, school discipline/suspension

  • Family - domestic violence, visitation, child support, child removal, spousal support, adoption

  • Consumer issues -  Assistance is available for families preparing to make a major purchase (such as a car) to help ensure that sales practices and terms are as fair as possible for our families.