Overview

Our clinical programs equip students with the skills for public interest law practice and offer students the opportunity to make an impact during their law school years.  Many of our clinics provide essential support to individuals and communities who would not otherwise have access to legal representation. From individual client representation in the Asylum Clinic, to the work on behalf of community groups and national organizations in the Environmental Law Clinic, students are trained in the techniques public interest lawyers use and work alongside these practicing attorneys to make positive changes in the greater community.

Related CoursesAsylum Clinic

Students in this clinic represent clients in connection with asylum petitions under the Violence Against Women Act and the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act. Working with survivors of torture and trauma, students in this course receive training in such critical skills as interviewing, researching and writing declarations and briefs, fact development and trial advocacy.

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Environmental Aspects of Business Transactions

This course uses the simulated sale of an actual facility (including the real estate and the business) to explore how environmental issues impact business transactions. Students learn the basic substantive knowledge and practical skills needed by lawyers practicing in the fields of business, real estate and environmental law. Students conduct legal and factual analysis in performing due diligence; draft and negotiate an environmental agreement; and draft and negotiate consent orders with regulators regarding environmental issues.

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First Amendment Amicus Brief Clinic

This clinic is taught by Professor Eugene Volokh, one of the nation’s leading First Amendment scholars. Students file amicus curiae briefs on behalf of nonprofits and academics in First Amendment cases involving free speech and religious freedom.

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Frank G. Wells Environmental Law Clinic

This clinic trains students in environmental lawyering. Under the supervision of faculty who are experienced environmental lawyers, students work on behalf of environmental and community groups on litigation and regulatory matters.

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Human Rights and International Criminal Law Online Forum

Students in this clinic partner with the Office of the Prosecutor (OTP) of the International Criminal Court (ICC) and a web design team to develop legal materials for and manage an innovative, award-winning human rights and international criminal law online forum (www.iccforum.com). Students frame up to three critical issues facing the Prosecutor and the Court; identify world-class experts who together offer a range of views on those issues; identify and collect relevant legal background materials that will be posted on the website; and offer their own legal analysis and opinions in postings on the forum.

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International Human Rights Clinic

This yearlong course provides students with both training in international human rights law theory and the opportunity to apply that theory in the service of real clients. Students work in teams to collaborate with international human rights organizations to help them achieve their legal and advocacy goals.

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Medical-Legal Partnership Clinic

Students in this clinic work directly with the Right to Health Project (RHP), a medical-legal partnership operated by Bet Tzedek Legal Services in partnership with St. Francis Medical Center in Lynwood and St. Vincent Medical Center in Downtown Los Angeles. Students receive intensive training and, under the supervision of project attorneys and UCLA Law faculty, interview community members referred to the RHP and, where appropriate, provide counseling and legal representation.

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Public Policy Advocacy

In this clinic, students work with clients, organizers and other advocates to devise and implement strategies for changing public policy in a selected area of importance to underrepresented groups. Through this hands-on work, students learn the basic approaches to changing law and policy, including litigation, lobbying and legislative work, organizing and building coalitions, and working with and through the media to inform and shape opinion.

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Regulatory Lawyering

Using a series of simulated scenarios, this clinic explores how environmental issues impact the operation and management of industrial and commercial facilities. Students enrolled in the course perform an analysis of compliance issues arising under various California air quality regulations or federal hazardous waste regulations; review and analyze draft state and federal permits, and prepare permit comments on behalf of the company or interested environmental groups; review and analyze draft regulations, and prepare written and oral public comments on those draft regulations; and negotiate and draft consent orders or variances with regulators and environmental advocacy groups.

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Sanela Diana Jenkins Clinic on Gender Violence in Eastern Congo

Students enrolled in this clinic help support and evaluate different types of interventions used to assist villages that have suffered mass rape attacks in Eastern Congo. The course begins with an introduction to the phenomenon of mass rape in Africa and its effects on victims, their families and village social, economic and political life. Students also receive training for interviewing and surveying victims, their families and villagers in a conflict zone. Students then travel to Eastern Congo to observe and document various interventions, interview and survey villagers prior to or after an intervention, and then evaluate the effectiveness of the interventions and suggest refinements of the interventions.

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Street Law – American Legal Education

This clinic allows students to teach law in a variety of high school classrooms throughout the Los Angeles area. Law students learn to communicate legal concepts to non-lawyers and develop such critical legal skills as establishing trust and building rapport.

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Tribal Appellate Court Clinic

Students in this clinic provide assistance to justices of the highest courts of the Hualapai and Hopi tribes in Arizona, while learning skills useful in clerking for any appellate judge in federal, state or tribal systems. In addition to classroom training and casework, students make site visits (at UCLA Law’s expense) to the respective tribal court to attend oral arguments and participate in deliberations.

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Tribal Legal Development Clinic

This clinic provides students with a unique opportunity to work with Native Nations located within the United States on their legal development projects. At the request of American Indian, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian governments and organizations, students work under the supervision of clinical faculty on projects including constitution drafting and reform; drafting and amendment of statutes; creation of Western-style, traditional and hybrid dispute resolution processes; and law clerk services to such forums.

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Workers’ Rights Clinic

Under the supervision of in-house counsel and a senior organizing director, clinic students participate in the legal program of UNITE HERE Local 11, a progressive, movement-oriented labor union that represents hotel and food service workers throughout Southern California. The course gives students the opportunity to gain a wide range of legal experience, including representing members in grievance and arbitration proceedings; investigating, filing and presenting unfair labor practice charges to the NLRB; researching and formulating legal strategy in support of organizing campaigns; protecting members' free speech rights at union actions and picket lines; and helping to create new policy initiatives to assist workers to organize.

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Youth and Justice Clinic

This clinic examines the role of the lawyer in the juvenile justice process. Under the supervision of clinical faculty, students in this course represent detained youth on non-criminal, civil legal issues. The course provides opportunities, through both simulation and work on real cases, for students to develop skills in client interviewing and counseling, case preparation, expert interviewing, motion/brief writing, policy briefing and institutional advocacy.

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