College of Arts & Sciences
A liberal arts education forms a broad academic foundation for independent thought, critical analysis, and lifelong learning. In other words, preparing you for your first career and your next.
The USF Law Clinics give you the opportunity to represent real clients in real cases. Under the supervision of a professor, you'll step out of the classroom and into the courtroom to work on a range of legal matters, from civil, to criminal, to juvenile law cases, and more.
Join one of our ten law clinics to get a jumpstart on your career, while performing pro-bono work for clients.
Participation in USF’s legal clinics allow students to gain experience drafting relevant documents, engage with real clients, and collaborate with other students and practitioners. Working in the Internet and Intellectual Property Justice Clinic has been invaluable, and a great way to supplement all I learned in my intellectual property courses by giving me the practical hands on experience I will need to work in the field.
Margaret Duangpanya '16
Criminal And Juvenile Justice Law Clinic
Data Privacy Law Clinic
Employment Law Clinic
Entrepreneurial Ventures Legal Services Project
Frank C. Newman International Human Rights Law Clinic
Immigration And Deportation Defense Clinic
Internet And Intellectual Property Justice Clinic
Investor Justice Clinic
Legal Services For Children Clinic
Racial Justice Law Clinic
Students enrolled in this clinic represent indigent defendants in all phases of criminal proceedings, from arraignment through trial and appeal in the San Francisco Superior Courts. They attend a two hour weekly seminar to train them in skills such as direct/cross examination and closing arguments. They work closely with attorneys in criminal practice and judges at the Hall of Justice.
Students also represent defendants in the juvenile court delinquency proceedings, providing a unique opportunity to work with children caught up in the juvenile justice system.
The clinic is supervised by Professor Sharon Meadows.
Kendrick Hall, 211
Students focus on developing practical skills for use after graduation in this clinic while studying data privacy law rules and practices in the classroom and in externship placements. The coursework provides background for externships arranged through this course in private corporations, public agencies, law firms, or nonprofit groups, where students work on data privacy compliance, advising, and/or policy work. The class will also cover privacy problems that arise during the externships. Information Privacy Law or Cyber Law/Internet Law is a pre-requisite. Professor Susan Friewald, a top authority on cyberlaw, information privacy law, and internet law, oversees the clinic.
Students in this clinic represent clients in Equal Employment Opportunity Commission mediations involving alleged discrimination. Students investigate claims and prepare cases for mediation. As part of their preparation, students develop the theory of the case, determine damages, and write a mediation brief. Upon successful resolution of the case, students prepare a settlement agreement.
Students also represent federal employees in Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) hearings. This representation is for federal employees who are appealing actions such as termination or suspension. Students interview clients, conduct discovery, appear in pretrial conferences and represent employees in MSPB hearings. For this representation, students follow the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and the Federal Rules of Evidence. This initiative is the first and only pilot project of its kind in the United States, and is intended to determine if law school clinics can fill the gap in the representation of federal employees who cannot afford the services of an attorney.
In addition, Employment Law Clinic students become involved in wage and hour disputes before the California Labor Commissioner. The clinic assists clients of the Instituto Laboral de la Raza, a workers' rights organization that addresses the needs of low income workers and their families throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. Finally, clinic students make presentations on employment rights at local high schools as part of the EEOC's Youth at Work program.
Kendrick Hall, 211
This collaborative effort between the Investor Justice, Employment Law, Internet and Intellectual Property, and Mediation clinics provides a host of legal services to start-up companies in Silicon Valley and the entire Bay Area.
Under the supervision of clinical faculty and staff, law students provide the legal expertise that many budding entrepreneurs need to launch their businesses successfully. The Investor Justice Clinic works on business and securities legal issues; the Internet and Intellectual Property Justice Clinic works with trademarks, copyrights, patents and online business issues; and the Employment Law Clinic works with issues ranging from worker rights to employee classification and employment discrimination. In addition, the Mediation Clinic works with resolving conflicts through alternative dispute resolution rather than traditional means.
The project is supervised by Professor Robert Talbot.
Kendrick Hall, 211
USF's innovative Frank C. Newman International Human Rights Law Clinic focuses on critical human rights issues, including migrants' rights, application of the death penalty to juveniles, and trafficking of women. Participating students research and prepare presentations for the United Nations Human Rights Council and the Commission on the Status of Women. As representatives of Human Rights Advocates, many students present their case to the council at its headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, or to the Commission on the Status of Women in New York City. Students also work on briefs detailing international law standards to U.S. courts and represent individual clients before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.
Kendrick Hall, 339
The Immigration and Deportation Defense Clinic was established principally to represent unaccompanied alien children (UACs) and women with children who have arrived at the southern border and are transferred to Northern California and the Central Valley. Under the supervision of the director and supervising attorney, students represent clients in all phases of immigration proceedings, at the asylum office, the immigration courts, and adjudication offices of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. Students also will represent minors in state probate and family law courts to seek guardianships where appropriate to qualify for Special Immigrant Juvenile Status. While the principal focus of the clinic is on UAC and related cases, other removal defense cases will likely be added to the caseload over time. The clinic is currently operated in-house at USF and partners with Catholic Charities of San Francisco, San Mateo, and Marin County.
The Internet and Intellectual Property Justice Clinic, in partnership with the Electronic Frontier Foundation, provides a variety of intellectual property legal services, such as domain name disputes in ICANN proceedings, copyright infringement notifications and counter notifications under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998, as well as other trademark and copyright matters. The clinic is also a partner in Chilling Effects, a joint project of the Electronic Frontier Foundation and law school clinics at Harvard, Stanford, Berkeley, and Maine. Chilling Effects helps the public understand the protections that the First Amendment and intellectual property laws provide for online activities.
Kendrick Hall, 211
In the Investor Justice Clinic, students represent investors in actions involving allegations of wrongdoing by securities firms and/or their employees. Students appear in arbitrations and other proceedings before the National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD) as well as the NYSE Arca (formerly the Pacific Stock Exchange). The clinic is officially recognized by the Financial Industry Regulation Authority (FINRA) and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
Kendrick Hall, 211
Students in the Legal Services for Children (LSC) Clinic will have an opportunity to work on guardianships, expulsion hearings, dependency cases, and immigration cases. Students will improve their skills in interviewing, issue spotting, and case presentation and trial techniques, and become familiar with administrative hearings, state court hearings, and federal immigration proceedings. The clinic includes a seminar taught by LSC Executive Director Abigail Trillin and will be held at LSC's offices in downtown San Francisco.
Kendrick Hall, 235
Students in the Mediation Clinic have the opportunity to apply dispute resolution skills by serving as mediators in cases brought to the San Francisco Small Claims Court. These mediations involve most areas of the law with the exception of criminal and family law matters. After intensive training, clinic students conduct mediations and draft settlement agreements for parties who are able to resolve their disputes.
The Racial Justice Clinic is a collaboration between the San Francisco Public Defender's office and USF School of Law. Under the direct supervision of Professor Sharon Meadows and experienced attorneys from the public defender's office, the clinic will provide law students the opportunity to learn and use complex analytical, legal writing and direct advocacy skills to address racial disparities in the criminal justice system in San Francisco. Law students will work with seasoned felony and misdemeanor trial lawyers to track racial disparities in bail settings, write, draft and argue bail hearings in court and design and implement creative strategies to reduce disparate pretrial detention and confinement of prisoners.
Kendrick Hall, 211