Photo of Michael A. Helfand, Ph.D.

Michael A. Helfand, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Law and Associate Director,
Diane and Guilford Glazer Institute for Jewish Studies

Office: School of Law (SOL)

  • Ph.D., Yale University, 2009
  • J.D., Yale University, 2007
  • B.A., Yeshiva University, 2002

Curriculum Vitae

The Diane and Guilford Glazer Institute for Jewish Studies

SSRN Author Page


Professor Michael (Avi) Helfand is an expert on religious law and religious liberty. A frequent author and lecturer, his work considers how U.S. law treats religious law, custom and practice, focusing on the intersection of private law and religion in contexts such as religious arbitration, religious contracts and religious torts. His academic articles have appeared in numerous law journals, including the Yale Law Journal, New York University Law Review, Duke Law Journal, Minnesota Law Review, Boston University Law Review, and University of Pennsylvania Journal of Constitutional Law. In addition, Professor Helfand often provides commentary on clashes between law and religion, writing for various public audience publications, including the Los Angeles Times, USA Today, the National Law Journal and the Forward.

Professor Helfand joined the Pepperdine Law faculty in 2010 where he has taught Contracts, Arbitration Law, and seminars in Law and Religion as well as Multiculturalism and the Law. Professor Helfand also serves as the associate director of the Diane and Guilford Glazer Institute for Jewish Studies at Pepperdine University as well a member of the faculty of the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution. In addition, he serves as both an arbitrator and consultant for the Beth Din of America.



All | Books | Book Chapters | Articles | Forthcoming | Popular Press

Popular Press

  • Michael A. Helfand, Religion and Commerce Can Co-Exist, USA TODAY, FEB. 25, 2015
  • Michael A. Helfand, The Eruv Dividing Church and State in the Hamptons, THE FORWARD, FEB. 12, 2015
  • Michael A. Helfand, Is a Prisoner's Beard Dangerous?, L.A. TIMES, Op-ed, OCT. 3, 2014
  • Michael A. Helfand, Hobby Lobby's Challenge to Officialdom's 'Compelling Interest', WASH. TIMES, JULY 2, 2014
  • Michael A. Helfand, The Murkiness of the Hobby Lobby Ruling, THE FORWARD, JUNE 30, 2014
  • Michael A. Helfand, Obamacare and Religious Rights in a For-Profit World, L.A. TIMES, Op-ed, MAR. 18, 2014, Page A11
  • Michael A. Helfand, America Doesn't See Its Religious Minorities, THE FORWARD, MAY 23, 2014
  • Michael A. Helfand, Implied Consent: A Proposal on For-Profit Conscience, FIRST THINGS, MAR. 25, 2014, Web Exclusive
  • Michael A. Helfand, There Is Another Way to Get a 'Get', THE FORWARD, OCT. 25, 2013
  • Michael A. Helfand, Religion's Wise Embrace of Commerce, FIRST THINGS, FEB. 07, 2013
  • Michael A. Helfand, Following Defeats, Anti-Sharia Law Supporters Revert to Sneaky Tactics, NATIONAL LAW JOURNAL, SEPT. 9, 2013, page 39
  • Michael A. Helfand, No, Bloomberg Isn't Banning Circumcision, FIRST THINGS, OCT. 15, 2012
  • Michael A. Helfand, The Boundaries of Religious Freedom, L.A. TIMES, AUG. 15, 2012
  • Michael A. Helfand, Postscript: Religious Freedom, L.A. TIMES, AUG. 18, 2012
  • Michael A. Helfand, Hebrew National Must Answer to a Higher Authority, THE FORWARD, AUG. 17, 2012
  • Michael A. Helfand, Why San Francisco's Proposed Circumcision Ban Violates the First Amendment, L.A. DAILY J., JUNE 30, 2011
  • Michael A. Helfand, A Law We Don't Need, L.A. TIMES, NOV. 10, 2010
  • Michael A. Helfand, The Young Israel Dilemma: Disengagement or Confrontation, THE JEWISH J., SEPT. 28, 2010

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