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Sonja D. Kerr

Sonja D. Kerr

  • Partner

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Practice Areas

  • Special Education Law

Biography

Sonja D. Kerr is a skilled special education attorney with over thirty years of practice at all levels, due process, federal and state courts, and the appellate courts. Ms. Kerr has litigated individual cases as well as class actions.

Ms. Kerr has had the pleasure of representing students with a wide variety of disabilities, including autism, language-impairments, Tourette's Syndrome, hearing impairment/deafness, learning disabilities/dyslexia, blind/visually impaired, ADHD/ADD, and children with emotional disturbance and children with a variety of physical disabilities.

Ms. Kerr has brought various cases against the state educational agency. In Indiana, she successfully represented parents in due process hearings and also challenged the state's due process system in federal court. H.H. v. Indiana Board of Special Education Appeals, (Indiana 2008); M.O. v. Duneland (Indiana 2009). Ms. Kerr obtained a federal court order sanctioning the attorney general of Nebraska for claiming that the state was immune from suit under the IDEA. Edwards v. Fremont (Nebraska 1994). And in Mississippi, Ms. Kerr sued to keep the state in a case involving the denial of a free appropriate public education to a child with dyslexia. Hill v. Laurel School District (Mississippi 1995).

Ms. Kerr was previously Director of Disability Rights for the prestigious Public Interest Law Center of Philadelphia from 2009-2016. While there, Ms. Kerr brought various class actions to protect the rights of children.

Ms. Kerr is admitted to practice in Indiana, Texas, Alaska and Pennsylvania, and is non-practicing in Minnesota. She is also admitted to various federal and circuit courts and the United States Supreme Court.

Education

  • Indiana University School of Law, Indianapolis, Indiana
    • J.D.
  • Purdue University
    • Masters Degree
    • Major: Counseling Psychology
  • Northwest Nazarene College
    • Honors: Summa Cum Laude

Bar Admissions

  • Indiana, 1987
  • Minnesota, 1987
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 8th Circuit, 1991
  • Alaska
  • Pennsylvania, 2011
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 9th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 7th Circuit
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • Texas

Professional Associations

  • Counsel for Parent Advocates and Attorneys (COPAA), Chairman
  • United Cerebral Palsy of Indiana, Social Worker

Representative Cases

  • H.H. v. Indiana Board of Special Education Appeals, (Indiana 2008)
  • M.O. v. Duneland (Indiana 2009)
  • Edwards v. Fremont (Nebraska 1994)
  • Hill v. Laurel School District (Mississippi 1995)