Learning to Love Pro Bono: A Practical Recipe for Engaging Law Students

The Second Draft, Forthcoming

U of Houston Law Center No. A-5 (2019)

6 Pages Posted: 1 Jul 2019

Date Written: June 28, 2019

Abstract

In April 2019, our Lawyering Skills & Strategies Department at the University of Houston Law Center brought together law students, faculty, practitioners, and UH law librarians, to help low-income clients across Texas using the virtual legal advice platform provided by the ABA’s Free Legal Answers website. Launched in September 2016, Free Legal Answers allows members of the public who income-qualify to post civil legal questions to a secure website and have those questions answered by a licensed attorney in their state. Pairing law students with practitioners, faculty, and law librarians, we were able to answer several real-time client questions, in the span of less than three hours, on issues ranging from family law and landlord-tenant to consumer disputes. The experience brought legal research and writing to life for our law students, and helped remind everyone about the importance of pro bono service to our profession.

We hope you will read this article and consider hosting a virtual legal advice clinic at your law school. It requires minimal set-up and has the potential to affect individuals that otherwise might be well outside the reach of a law school. Below is our simple recipe for success.

Keywords: legal education, legal writing

Suggested Citation

Rubin Gomez, Alissa, Learning to Love Pro Bono: A Practical Recipe for Engaging Law Students (June 28, 2019). The Second Draft, Forthcoming; U of Houston Law Center No. A-5 (2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3411812

Alissa Rubin Gomez (Contact Author)

University of Houston Law Center ( email )

4604 Calhoun Road
Houston, TX 77204
United States

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