We are leaders in experiential education
All of our students work to solve the client’s real-world problems. And, depending on the clinic or externship you take, your experience can include writing briefs, arguing in court, or presenting to boards of directors or organizations.
MILTON A. KRAMER LAW CLINIC CENTER
We were one of the first law schools in the country to start a clinical program. We opened to the community over 45 years ago, a long-standing history that demonstrates our commitment to clients, to the highest-quality representation, and to excellence in education. Our clinic is a law firm within the law school and is staffed with eight full-time faculty members who have years of practice experience themselves. You will represent clients and client groups who can’t afford their own lawyers. Our clinic handles more than 100 cases per year for a total of approximately 16,000 hours of pro bono legal work.
Each student takes primary responsibility for his/her caseload. Cases are often complex and include ongoing representation of organizations, civil, criminal, and administrative appeals, consumer disputes, disability rights, fraud claims, emergency commitment and competency hearings, patentability and patent applications, trademark and copyright issues, misdemeanor and felony cases in adult and juvenile court, and innocence-project cases. The six clinics in our center each provide experiences in different areas of law.
Civil Litigation Clinic: The nature of the problems in the Civil Litigation Clinic can vary considerably and therefore students represent clients in a wide range of matters. Some clients have been sued on old credit-card debts by collection agencies that have inadequate documentation. Some cases involve home repair disputes. Others involve money disputes with family members. Student interns have represented clients who were victims of police misconduct or have been discriminated against because they are homeless. Our students’ work has resulted in a $1.17 million for one of our clients and an Ohio Supreme Court case.
Criminal Justice Clinic: Students are certified to practice criminal law in both misdemeanor and felony courts either as counsel for defendants or as a prosecuting attorney. The foundation of our clinical work is defense of indigent clients, but we balance that work with a significant prosecution experience. Interns have also handled appeals as both defense counsel and prosecutor. During the Spring 2014 Criminal Justice Clinic, eight students received 1st chair trial experience while trying four criminal jury trials and arguing a case in the 8th District Court of Appeals.
Community Development Clinic (CDC): Students represent community-based for-profit and non-profit entities on the full range of issues on which business lawyers advise their clients. For start-ups, they advise on the client’s choice of entity decision and then create the entity, establish its management structure and, if it is non-profit, assist it in obtaining tax exemption. For already established businesses, our students act as general counsel advising their clients on how to operate in compliance with law that regulates their activities, including on employment, zoning, licensing and tax matters. Our students also serve as deal lawyers - they draft and negotiate contracts, help their clients to structure tax, real estate and corporate transactions and set-up subsidiaries. Our students also help clients protect their intellectual property.
Health Law Clinic: Students represent children and adults in Social Security disability claims, guardianships concerning incompetence, access to health care, special education for children with disabilities, and other health and disability law-related issues, in administrative and court proceedings. This year students will also represent veterans regarding VA disability benefits and participate in a pilot project with doctors at Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital - University Hospital which will focus on children’s health issues.
Human Rights, Civil Rights & Immigration Clinic: Through a variety of advocacy tools, including litigation, report writing, memoranda, and outreach, students address a diverse range of human rights, civil rights, and immigration matters. Students work on cases and projects, often as co-counsel with other lawyers and organizations, addressing immigrant and refugee rights, constitutional rights and international human rights violations. Examples include: representing victims of police brutality and Internet censorship in federal court; representing non-citizens in applications for relief from removal or deportation, asylum, withholding of removal, and protection under the Convention Against Torture; advising judicially mandated commission on police reforms; and partnering with non-governmental organizations in the research and reporting on counterterrorism legislation compliance with international human rights instruments and protections and advocating the release of individuals wrongfully detained in repressive countries.
Human Trafficking Program: Supported by an $800,000 grant from the Ohio Attorney General, the Human Trafficking Program represents juveniles and adults who are victims of human trafficking. Our students help clients with a wide range of issues including representation in criminal cases, expunging criminal convictions, witness advocacy, immigration status, employment and housing. The program also supports community awareness and works with community partners to improve services and legislative options for victims of trafficking. It hosts an annual day-long conference and partners with nonprofits, such as Save Our Adolescents from Prostitution (SOAP), to distribute informational flyers, missing children posters and other materials.
Intellectual Property (IP) Venture Clinic: Added to our center in Fall 2013, the IP Venture Clinic helps bring science to market. Students work with entrepreneurs to develop an IP protection strategy and to prepare documentation with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Students also work with startups on developing a clear business strategy. They also draft charter documents for the company and agreements to handle stock options, if necessary.