All students are required to attend an orientation prior to the first day of classes. The mandatory orientation sessions for the 2014 summer/fall clinics are as follows:
- Consumer Protection & Litigation Clinics: Wednesday, May 21, 2014, to Friday, May 23, 2014
- Mediation Clinic: Tuesday, August 12, 2014, to Friday, August 15, 2014
- Consumer Protection & Litigation Clinics: Wednesday, August 13, 2014, to Friday, August 15, 2014
- Low Income Taxpayer Clinic: Friday, August 15, 2014
Legal Clinic students have the responsibility of assisting real clients under the close supervision of clinic faculty. The education in the legal clinic centers on experience at all levels of case development. Students work on their cases as if they were a practicing attorney. All students will be required to have set clinic hours each week, along with their individual class requirements. Each student is assigned at least one case, however, most students are assigned two or more cases over the semester depending on the complexity of the caseload and time involved. Because the clinics deal with real cases, proper precautions to avoid conflicts of interest must be taken; please review the Conflict of Interest section for your chosen clinic. If you have a question about whether the conflict of interest policy applies to your situation, please note your concern on the back of this form.
Litigation Clinic students assist clients who are pursuing court action to obtain relief in the areas of family or juvenile law. Six-hour students should allot an average of 20 hours per week for casework and document preparation, required class attendance, and a weekly case status review (CSR) with the supervising attorney/professor and student colleague. Four-hour students should allot an average of 14 hours per week. Casework tasks include: preparing for and conducting client and witness interviews, investigating “facts”, researching statutes, case law, and rules of procedure, evidence, and ethics related to your case, drafting and filing complaints and motions, preparing discovery, decrees and orders, negotiating with prosecutors or opposing counsel, developing direct and cross questions for hearings, and handling hearings both contested and uncontested. Conflict of Interest: During the course, students may not work for the prosecuting attorney’s office, the Attorney General’s office, or the Department of Human Services and may not engage in any other activities that would reasonably appear to create a conflict of interest. Orientation for the Litigation Clinic is a 3-day session which meets prior to the first day of classes.
Consumer Protection Clinic students will assist clients who are facing foreclosure, eviction, housing instability, fraud, unfair or deceptive trade practices, and problems with credit reports and credit access. The course will be primarily litigation-based, and students will have the opportunity to gain experience interviewing clients, analyzing documents, drafting complaints and pleadings, conducting discovery, negotiating with opposing counsel, representing clients in administrative or judicial proceedings, and engaging in long-term case strategizing. Students will gain exposure to a broad range of substantive housing and consumer law, as well as well as access to justice and professional responsibility issues. Students will also examine systemic issues facing low- and moderate-income Arkansans and will explore advocacy strategies for improving the overall housing and consumer landscape, such as community education and outreach, administrative rulemaking, legislative advocacy, and media outreach. Conflicts of Interest: During the course, students may not work for the prosecuting attorney’s office or the Attorney General’s office and may not engage in any other activities that would reasonably appear to create a conflict of interest. Orientation for the Consumer Protection Clinic is a 3-day session which meets prior to the first day of classes.
Tax Clinic students assist clients in resolving disputes with the IRS. Cases involve client interviews and fact gathering, tax law research, formulating action plans, preparation of written protests, drafting Offers in Compromise and Installment Agreements, negotiation, and possibly litigation. Students learn the skills of the practice of law while experiencing and analyzing the law, conducting fact investigation and engaging in direct client interaction. Skills developed in these activities apply to all areas of law. Students should allot sufficient time for casework and document preparation as well as the required class attendance. During a weekly case status review (CSR) with the supervising attorney/professor the professor and the student will evaluate the progress of the cases assigned to the student and how best to move the case along to a conclusion. This also provides the opportunity to explore in depth all of the issues being presented by each case. Conflict of Interest: During the course, students may not work for the U.S. Tax Court or the Internal Revenue Service and may not engage in any other activities that would reasonably appear to create a conflict of interest. Orientation for the Tax Clinic is a 1-day session which meets prior to the first day of classes.
Mediation Clinic: The Mediation Clinic includes training in mediation and negotiation skills through lecture, discussion, simulations, observation, written case studies, and co‑mediation of actual cases. Students should allot sufficient time for class attendance and mediation observations which are required. Small claims mediations are scheduled for up to two hours on the second, third and fourth Mondays of the month at the Pulaski County courthouse. Child welfare, juvenile delinquency, FINS mediations and Access & Visitation mediations are arranged for various times. Students will be required to prepare 3 written reports on cases that you observe or co-mediate and one final report covering 4 cases. Students will also team-teach one class on a topic selected from the syllabus. Conflict of Interest: During the course, students may not work for the Department of Human Services, any other law office representing clients in dependency‑neglect cases, the prosecutor’s office or the public defender and may not engage in any other activities that would reasonably appear to create a conflict of interest. Orientation for the Mediation Clinic is a 4-day session which meets prior to the first day of classes.