First Amendment Amicus Brief Clinic

Overview

The clinic -- a UCLA School of Law class, taught and supervised by Prof. Eugene Volokh -- represents:

  • nonprofits and academics filing amicus curiae briefs 
  • in state and federal courts
  • in trial courts, intermediate appellate courts, and courts of last resort
  • on free speech and religious freedom
  • involving the First Amendment, state constitutional analog, and related statutes (such as anti-SLAPP statutes, 47 U.S.C. § 230, Religious Freedom Restoration Acts, and more).

For a list of our cases -- filed on behalf of groups such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, the Student Press Law Center, the ACLU of Virginia, the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, the Cato Institute, and more -- see this detailed table.

The clinic will be operating in Spring 2015. Please e-mail us at amicusclinic@law.ucla.edu if you are:

  • a nonprofit organization (including an ad hoc group of academics) and would like us to write and file an amicus brief for you, or
  • are a lawyer representing a party, and you’ve lined up a prospective amicus that needs a brief written and filed.

Please give us as much lead time as possible, and include in the e-mail at least the following information:

  • The name of the case.
  • The name of the prospective amicus.
  • The opinion below, if you are appealing.
  • The date that the amicus brief would be due.
  • The court in which the brief would be filed.
  • Your sense of what you would like the brief to generally say.

We generally do not do cases on other areas of the law, and we generally do not directly represent parties. We certainly cannot represent parties at the trial level, though we are happy to file amicus briefs in trial court, if the timing is right.

Clinic Faculty

Eugene Volokh, who teaches the Clinic and who will be the Counsel of Record on the briefs (together with local counsel, when needed), has taught at UCLA School of Law since 1994. He is the author or coauthor of over 70 law review articles, about half of which are on First Amendment law; those articles have been cited over 120 times by court cases. He has also filed amicus briefs in state appellate courts in California, Indiana, Michigan, and New Mexico, in federal district court in Colorado, in the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Eighth and Eleventh Circuits, and in the U.S. Supreme Court (both at the petition for certiorari stage and at the merits stage). He is a member of the American Law Institute‚Äč and a former law clerk for now-Chief Judge Alex Kozinski on the Ninth Circuit and for Justice Sandra Day O’Connor.