Washington Area Lawyers for the Arts
Washington Area Lawyers for the Arts (WALA) was founded in 1983 through the combined efforts of lawyers and artists. The creation of WALA was inspired by the growing awareness that the legal needs of the greater Washington arts community were not being adequately served. Today, WALA provides a broad range of services, including referring artists and arts organizations to one of 450 volunteer attorneys who provide pro bono legal assistance on issues such as copyright, tax-exempt status, leases and contract negotiations. WALA's Arts Mediation Services helps parties reach amicable solutions cost-effectively, without going to court. WALA sponsors workshops and seminars for artists, lawyers and others involved in the arts community offering much sought-after training and education in legal aspects of the arts. WALA received the 1991 Mayor's Art Award for excellence in service to the arts. Today, more than 350 of Washington’s top lawyers and law firms participate as volunteers in WALA’s legal services programs.