Litigation and Housing Law Clinic (YR)

Section 1ZO, Fall 20

Schedule Information

Enrollment: 5/8
Credits: 4

Course Description

Students will participate throughout the year in advising on, developing, and litigating actual housing cases. The caseload includes trials, administrative proceedings, and interaction with low-income clients. Students handle eviction and voucher termination cases, abatement of substandard building conditions, and other enforcement of residents' rights, although specific assignments vary according to the cases available during the year. This case work will be performed in cooperation with the Legal Aid Justice Center. The course also incorporates classroom instruction during the fall semester in the substantive and procedural aspects of landlord-tenant law and litigation skills, Under the supervision of an attorney, students perform most lawyer functions associated with their cases, including client and witness interviews, factual development, legal research, preparation of pleadings, and negotiation. Third-year students who have their Third Year Practice Certification are eligible to appear and argue in court. The necessary course work for the Certification can be completed in the 2L year or finished in the fall semester of 3L. Students who do not qualify for a Third Year Practice Certification, including 2Ls, may conduct negotiations, assist with factual and legal case development, sit second chair, and, in most years, argue an administrative hearing.

Course Requirements

Exam Info:
Midterm Type (if any): None
Description: None

Final Type (if any): None
Description: None
Final Exam Notes:


Written Work Product
Written Work Product: Research memoranda, briefing and pleadings in administrative procedures, state, and/or federal court.

Other Work
Interviewing clients and witnesses, general investigation, reviewing case files, collecting records, searching court files, developing and implementing litigation strategies, etc.

Other Course Details
Prerequisites: Evidence, Professional Responsibility and Third Year Practice Certificate recommended, but not required; because the credits in this course count toward the JD Program Professional Skills requirement, JD candidates will be given enrollment priority for this class. Concurrencies: None
Mutually Exclusive With: None
Laptops Allowed: Yes
First Day Attendance Required: Yes
Course Notes: Our plan is to conduct class every Wednesday 8:40-9:40am on Zoom. However, we expect that all in-person students will be available for in-person court hearings and potentially for social distancing client meetings. We anticipate accommodating the online students by requesting online or telephonic court hearings and telephone interviews with clients. Obviously this is an evolving situation and we are not in control of local courts, but our hope is that there will be equal opportunity for students who do not feel comfortable appearing in person. All clinic participants must attend an “Orientation to Law Clinics at LAJC” session at the start of the semester. These sessions will provide clinic participants with necessary information about working with LAJC and its client community. Information about this session will be circulated once available. CREDITS: Of the eight credits awarded for this clinic, four credits will be allocated to the fall semester (Credit/No Credit grading) and four credits to the spring semester (letter-graded). INSTRUCTION MODE: Class sessions will be held virtually in the fall, but other components of the clinic will be in-person if permitted.  We want potential students to know that in-person-only opportunities will come up throughout the semester, such as client interviews and court appearances, that may make 100% remote participation difficult or less desirable.  That said, we will make accommodations for students who need or want to be all remote.

Graduation Requirements

*Satisfies Writing Requirement: No
**Credits For Prof. Skills Requirement: Yes
Satisfies Professional Ethics: No

*Yes means professor requires everyone in the course to submit a substantial research paper (which is the requirement standard in Academic Policies), so no paperwork required to be submitted to SRO. No means student must timely submit paperwork to SRO if intending to use a paper in this course to satisfy the Writing Requirement.

**Yes indicates course credits count towards UVA Law’s Prof. Skills graduation requirement, not necessarily a skills requirements for any particular state bar.

General Information

Schedule No.
Law No.
Modified Type
Cross Listed: No
Cross-Listed Course Mnemonic:
Public Syllabus Link: None
Evaluation Portal Via LawWeb Opens:
Evaluation Portal Via LawWeb Closes: