Private Counsel Appellate Panel

Andrew Cohen, Appellate Panel Director

CAFL appeals are appeals of final judgments in child welfare/state intervention matters. The work of the CAFL appellate panel attorneys includes interviewing and visiting clients, conducting legal research, writing motions and briefs, and arguing cases before the Massachusetts Appeals Court and Supreme Judicial Court.  Private panel attorneys handle the majority of CAFL appeals; other CAFL appeals are handled by the CAFL Appellate Unit. Presently, there are approximately 130 private attorneys statewide who are certified to accept CAFL appeals.

Prospective Applicants

Admission to the CAFL Appellate Panel requires application and completion of our 3-day appellate training program.  See CAFL Appellate Panel Certification Requirements

To download an application, see CAFL Training.  Applications are generally posted 2-3 months prior to the annual training.

Current Appellate Panel Members

We have many model briefs and motions, legal research memos, and links to relevant statutes and court rules under Appellate Practice Tools and Resources.

For all other resources, see Professional Resources.

For additional information, contact Andrew Cohen ( in the CAFL Administrative Office.