Section Description Provided by Instructor
Challenging the Consequences of Mass Incarceration is a clinic that will focus on litigation in federal and state court primarily related to prisoners' conditions of confinement. Students will visit clients in state and federal prisons where they will interview, counsel and develop strategies. Subject to the law student intern rules, clinic students will litigate issues identified by the clients.
Students will work with clients to develop legal strategies to resolve their problems. Although the identification of cases will be done collaboratively with the clients, projects may include civil rights actions in EDNY and SDNY and state court litigation of adverse parole decisions. It is anticipated that claims related to medical care, mental health and excessive force may also become part of the clinic's docket.
To prepare for this work, students will read and discuss writings about punishment theory, the history of American prisons and the substantive law governing prisoners' rights. To develop the skills they will need to work with clients, students will participate in intensive simulated interview exercises. Other legal skills, including counseling, negotiation, oral argument, preparation of pleadings, briefs and other litigation related writing will be taught and acquired in the context of client representation. Students will be encouraged to raise, reflect on and discuss relevant issues of professional responsibility that arise in work with confined, indigent clients.
Method of Evaluation
J.D. Writing Credit
Minor (upon consultation), Major (only upon consultation) (The availability of this credit will depend on cases assigned and will be considered on an individual basis.)
LLM Writing Project
(only upon consultation)