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Professor David Faigman, Founder & President Professor Marsha Cohen, Founder & Executive Director www.uchastings.edu/lawyersforamerica Information Session.

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Presentation on theme: "Professor David Faigman, Founder & President Professor Marsha Cohen, Founder & Executive Director www.uchastings.edu/lawyersforamerica Information Session."— Presentation transcript:

1 Professor David Faigman, Founder & President Professor Marsha Cohen, Founder & Executive Director Information Session on Lawyers for America: Preparing for LfA or for Hastings’ Clinics and Externships

2 W HAT IS L AWYERS FOR A MERICA ? California nonprofit corporation incubated at UC Hastings Mission: To improve the practical skills of new lawyers, while expanding the ability of nonprofits and government legal offices to provide legal services. Method: Through collaborations with law schools and participating work sites (government law offices and legal nonprofits), arrange two-year fellowships that encompass the 3L year of law school and the first post-graduate year. Pilot class: LfA’s first, pilot class of fellows will serve in the San Francisco Bay Area, in partnership with UC Hastings. Participating work sites will be announced in the fall, and are currently anticipated to be government agencies in criminal law practice (DA, PD). LfA will available to law schools throughout the country that wish to participate; each law school will bring its own partner sites to the program.

3 W HY A H EAVY D IET OF C LINICAL E DUCATION ? Difficult job market: will those with significant practical experience and supervisors who can meaningfully rate skills be well-positioned to be hired? For maintaining a position: will beginning with a significant amount of practical experience enable a newly- hired lawyer to meet employer expectations more easily than one without such experience? Simultaneous opportunity to help close the “justice gap,” the large unmet need for the assistance of lawyers.

4 T HE LfA F ELLOWSHIP P ROGRAM A two-year fellowship program that comprises your last year of law school and your first post- graduate year.  2L Year (for the class of 2014) Immediately: consider course selection for this fall, and make changes to enable completion of most bar and pre-requisite courses at the end of second year Fall 2012: Apply to be a fellow. (In later years this will be a two-step process; the first step, becoming a “candidate fellow,” will occur after the end of the 1L year, and the second step, being selected by a participating site, in the spring of the 2L year) Interview with partner sites for Fellowships If selected as a Fellow by a partner site, enter into employment contract with LfA and partner site, committing to the 3L year externship and one subsequent post-bar year at the partner site Note: You may work in any position during your 2L summer  3L Year LfA Fellows will work at a partner legal office full time (on a worker’s schedule: normal holidays off, but no long semester break) Classroom component supervised by Hastings faculty member; content/meetings dependent upon placement. (Credit: each semester 4 classroom and 8 non-classroom units) Status as student (tuition-payer, receiving credit, eligible for all financial aid)  Post Graduation Three-month break to take a bar exam and a vacation; then return to site for a year. Fellows will receive a small salary ($30,000) and health insurance and are likely to be eligible for law school and government programs of loan repayment assistance. Apply for post-fellowship jobs. (Ultimately LfA will hold job fairs for Fellows.)

5 H OW W ILL F ELLOWS B E S ELECTED ? Selection committee will include both faculty and representatives of placement sites. Likely considerations:

6 F ULFILLING A CADEMIC R EQUIREMENTS In addition to the required first year courses, you must satisfy the following requirements: 1.ETHICS REQUIREMENT: Choose from among multiple offerings, 2 or 3 units 2. WRITING REQUIREMENT: Satisfy the writing requirement by: One course or seminar that satisfies the writing requirement (2-3 units) or A two-unit independent study. (Student notes written for journals may be the basis for fulfilling this requirement) 3.SKILLS REQUIREMENT: Satisfied by participation in LfA or other clinical/externship programs.

7 “S TRONGLY R ECOMMENDED ” AND CA B AR C OURSES The Hastings faculty “strongly recommends” the following courses (units in parentheses), along with at least one experiential course (clinic or externship): Administrative Law (3) Business Associations or Corporations (4) Civil Procedure II (3) Constitutional Law II (4) Criminal Procedure (3) Evidence (3 or 4) Federal Income Taxation (3) Financial Basics for Lawyers (2) Plus at least one international course and one “perspectives” course (one that offers a broad theoretical or historical view) (4-6) Tested on the California bar, but not on the strongly-recommended list, are: CA Community Property (2) CA Wills and Trusts (4) Remedies (3)

8 “S TRONGLY R ECOMMENDED ” AND CA B AR C OURSES Required after first year (ethics/writing): 4-5 units “Strongly Recommended” Total Units: 25-26, plus 4-6 (international/perspectives) Units of additional CA Bar-tested courses: 9 Important for litigation practice: Negotiation and Settlement: 3 units GRAND TOTAL: units CHOICES MUST BE MADE! First year = 30 units – 86 units are needed for graduation. Lawyers for America will provide 24 units during third year (8 classroom, 16 non-classroom). Each clinic or externship program has a slightly different unit load (and there is a classroom/non- classroom division for each).

9 C HOICES M UST B E M ADE ! If 1L = 30 and 3L = 24, 2L must include 32 units. Some units can be earned as a 3L doing clinics/externships/LfA both semesters, although multiple-meetings-per-week podium classes may be difficult/impossible to schedule. Independent study or a seminar meeting the writing requirement would likely fit the best, and could supply 4 units (leaving 28 for second year). Clinic/externship/LfA work sites need to be consulted about your regular daytime on-campus scheduled classes; sites are aware of schedules for classroom components for these clinical programs. CAVEAT: IMPACT ON HONORS! Election to Order of the Coif (under Academic Regulation 2006) requires that 75% of your coursework must have been completed at Hastings in graded (GPA) courses. However, rank in class and GPA are not similarly affected – nor are Latin honors (cum laude, magna cum laude, summa cum laude).

10 F ULFILLING A LL R EQUIREMENTS Maximum number of units per semester: 16, although 17 are allowed for one semester in a given year (and with permission you can take 17 units each semester). Non-classroom unit maximum: Only 18 non-classroom units (you will have 16 as a 3L in LfA) may be counted toward graduation. (Other non-classroom units are earned for independent studies; as teaching assistants for Legal Research and Writing, LEOP, and Academic Support; on Moot Court Board, interscholastic competitions, and through participation on scholarly publications. You can be involved in some of these activities without the credit counting toward graduation; some may be pursued purely on an extra-curricular basis). How do I make these choices? What do you feel you must take? (to be comfortable taking the bar exam; to be prepared for a clinic or externship experience, including LfA; to be prepared for the type of career that you now think might most appeal to you) What do you feel you need not take? (you would be comfortable picking up the basics for the bar; you are certain it will not be relevant to anything you think might appeal to you) But you must also be certain to include: putting your toe into the water of a subject that intrigues you. You might fall in love: you might choose to spend all of your third year taking every tax course or intellectual property course offered, for example, instead of continuing your “plan” to be a criminal lawyer.

11 S PECIFIC C OURSE R EQUIREMENTS To be prepared for LfA and clinics/externships in a litigation context, you definitely should already have taken: Evidence (3 or 4) Constitutional Law II (4) Civil Procedure II (3) or Criminal Procedure (3) (you might wish to do both) Negotiation and Settlement (3) Professional Responsibility (2 or 3) There are additional/specific pre-requisites for some clinical offerings. For example, Trial Advocacy (2) is a prerequisite for the criminal practice clinics. For all the specific pre-requisite courses, see

12 P OSSIBLE 2L C OURSE P ATTERN (C RIMINAL F OCUS ) FALL SEMESTER: Evidence (3 or 4) Trial Advocacy (2) Criminal Procedure (3) Business Associations or Corporations (4) Patents and Trade Secrets (3) (or other curiosity-raising course) (A law journal? Moot court? TA position? (1-2)) SPRING SEMESTER: Constitutional Law II (4) International (Criminal Law/Business Transactions/Human Rights) or international or perspectives seminar (2 or 3) (can satisfy writing requirement) Federal Income Taxation (3) Negotiation and Settlement (3) Professional Responsibility (2 or 3) (A law journal? Moot court? TA position? (1-2))

13 P OSSIBLE 2L C OURSE P ATTERN (C IVIL F OCUS ) FALL SEMESTER: Civil Procedure II (3) Constitutional Law II (4) Administrative Law (3) Professional Responsibility (2 or 3) Family Law (or other curiosity-raising course) (3 or 4) (A law journal? Moot court? TA position? (1-2)) SPRING SEMESTER: Business Associations or Corporations (4) Evidence (3 or 4) International (Business Transactions/Criminal Law/Human Rights) or international or perspectives seminar (2 or 3) (can satisfy writing requirement) Professional Responsibility (2 or 3) Negotiation and Settlement (3) (A law journal? Moot court? TA position? (1-2))

14 H OW D O I B ECOME A LFA F ELLOW ?  Watch your Hastings inbox for information about partnership sites and the availability of LfA applications (likely to be in October). Fill out and return the application by the stated deadline. Finalists will be interviewed, including by representatives from the partnership sites.  LfA Fellows will be given an employment contract that covers the post- graduation year. LfA Fellows will spend their 3L year working full-time as externs at their partner sites, supervised by partner site attorneys and a Hastings faculty member who will provide the classroom instructional component of the externship.  Questions? Need Advice? Contact us: Professor Cohen (LfA) – (415) ; Professor Stuart – (415) ;


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