The Immigrant Rights Clinic engages students in the direct representation of noncitizens and community organizations in litigation, community outreach, and policy advocacy. Students will work in teams to represent individual clients in a litigation matter, such as a removal proceeding in immigration court, an administrative or judicial appeal, or other legal claim, as well as work with a community-based organization in an advocacy project or outreach and education. Through a mix of individual and organizational representation, students will develop an integrated approach to promoting the rights of immigrants. Direct representation of individual clients will require students to develop skills in fact-development, client interviewing, affidavit drafting, expert opinion development, testimony preparation, legal briefing, and case planning that combines client narratives with long-term appellate strategies. In working with organizational clients and partners, students will learn to gather data and produce policy reports; develop accessible legal resources for immigrant families and their allies; and collaborate with grassroots organizers, policy-makers, pro bono counsel teams, and national advocacy groups.
The Immigrant Rights Clinic works with local service providers, national advocacy groups, and community organizations to develop a docket that combines direct representation, impact litigation, and policy advocacy. Students are directly responsible for these cases and take the leading role in defining advocacy goals and strategies with their clients. Through the clinic, students can build their litigation skills and develop a better understanding of how to engage in immigrant rights campaigns. The Immigrant Rights Clinic will combine a substantive weekly seminar, case work, and weekly case supervision and instruction meetings. It will be a one-semester course offered in both the fall and spring semesters and students will have an Advanced Clinic option.
J.D. students are required to have instruction in the Model Rules of Professional Conduct prior to participating in a clinic or an externship (see Clinics Enrollment Policy). The following courses fulfill this prerequisite:
Ethics in Civil Litigation (LAW 239)
Law of Lawyering: Ethics of Social Justice Representation (LAW 237);
Criminal Justice Ethics (LAW 317)
The Law of Lawyering (LAW 238)
Ethics in Action (LAW 539).
This prerequisite does not apply to LL.M. students.
To enroll in the clinic’s initial semester (Spring 2020), students must complete Crimmigration Law in the fall of 2019 or enroll in Law 351 Immigration and Nationality Law in Spring 2019 or have taken Law 351 US Immigration and Nationality Law in Spring 2019. In addition, permission of the instructor is required. After the clinic’s initial semester, students must complete either Crimmigration Law or Immigration Law & Policy to enroll in the clinic. Evidence, Criminal Procedure, and Administrative Law are helpful but not required.
|Course Areas of Practice|
Knowledge and understanding of substantive and procedural law
Legal analysis and reasoning, legal research, problem-solving, and written and oral communication in the legal context
Exercise of proper professional and ethical responsibilities to clients and the legal system
Other professional skills needed for competent and ethical participation as a member of the legal profession