Our Mission

  • Facilitate access to legal services for Northeast Ohio artists and arts organizations, including pro bono legal representation and referrals to income-eligible artists and arts organizations in all disciplines
  • Develop educational resources for and build a living network of the region’s lawyers, artists, and arts organizations
  • Advocate for a strong and vibrant arts community

How we serve the community

  • For artists: If you are an artist or arts organization in the Greater Cleveland area seeking free legal assistance, please contact the VLA to submit an application.
  • For the public: The VLA is committed to partnering with local arts and nonprofit organizations to present free, public law-related education programs. Past presentations have focused on topics such as leasing, gallery agreements, sales, and intellectual property protection. If you have an idea for an educational program, please let us know!
  • For attorneys: We are currently seeking attorneys to join the VLA Committee to help us carry out our mission. If you are interested in joining the VLA, please submit your committee request form.


The art scene in the U.S. is made even more vibrant with the addition of international artists and performers, but often theaters, galleries, schools, artists, and even the attorneys who advise them can get tripped up on the legal requirements for them to work here. Join the VLA Nov. 20 to hear from two experienced immigration attorneys, who will provide the procedural and legal options available for artists and performers/entertainers to visit the U.S. temporarily on non-immigrant visas. They will also discuss the employment-based green card process for attorneys advising those hoping to immigrate permanently to the U.S. to pursue their artistic careers here.

Artists and arts organizations are also welcome at this free seminar. All attorneys and legal professionals are welcome to attend: attorneys may receive 1.5-hr CLE credit for free in return for a future volunteer pro bono commitment to the VLA. Attorneys click here to register, members of the public please email jpaine@clemetrobar.org.

Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts is a program of the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association, with funding support provided by the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Foundation.

The CMBF is a 501(c)(3) organization; gifts to it are tax deductible as charitable contributions for federal income tax purposes.

Helpful Links and Resources

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