Health and Disability Law Clinic (YR)

Section 1SP, Fall 20

Schedule Information

Enrollment: 6/8
Credits: 4

Course Description

Students in this yearlong clinic represent clients in a variety of legal matters pertaining to the health needs of low-income clients. These needs include planning for incapacity and/or death (creating wills, advanced directives, and powers of attorney); public benefits claims (including Medicaid, Social Security, Medicare, and other benefits); insurance coverage; obtaining access to mental health or rehabilitative services; and seeking justice for the mistreatment of seniors and those with disabilities in various contexts. Representation may include appearing in legal proceedings, negotiations, administrative hearings, and court proceedings (to the extent permitted by law). Students will also address systemic issues related to the provision of community-based services, the rights of the institutionalized, health care in jails and prisons, and the interface between the civil and criminal justice systems on health and mental health related matters. Instruction in the substantive law of these areas will be provided in a classroom component throughout the clinic as dictated by the needs of the clients. The classroom component provides a forum for students to learn mental health, disability, public benefits, medical debt and elder law pertinent to the cases they are handling, as well as for the discussion of practice and ethical issues arising in those cases. Topics relating to client competence and autonomy issues involving mentally ill and elderly clients also are addressed. Under the supervision of an attorney, students directly perform all the lawyerly functions associated with their cases, including client and witness interviews, factual development, legal research, preparation of documents and pleadings, and negotiation and advocacy in administrative forums and courts (to the extent permitted by law). Students may also participate in community organizing to engage and promote local client communities, develop and implement legal education programming for our client communities, and collaborate with legal aid advocates and allies to activities and advocacy aimed to change existing local and statewide law and policy. Students meet weekly with the supervising attorney to discuss the readings, if any, assigned for that particular week and to receive case supervision, along with instruction concerning client interviewing and counseling, negotiation and case development. The supervising attorney accompanies each student to all administrative proceedings and court appearances. This clinic is offered in conjunction with the Legal Aid Justice Center.

Course Requirements

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

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

None


Written Work Product
Written Work Product: Memoranda on client and witness interviews, factual developments, and legal research and theories; Client communications and demand letters; Pleadings and other filings in administrative forums and courts.

Other Work

Other Course Details
Prerequisites: Trial advocacy, Negotiations, and course requirements for a third year practice certificate (for 3L’s) are 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: The Clinic will meet as a group at LAJC’s office (1000 Preston Avenue, Suite A) during the scheduled course time for seminar. IMPORTANT: 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). ATTENDANCE REQUIREMENT: Enrolled students who do not attend the first class session and the mandatory orientation will be dropped unless granted prior approval by the instructors. INSTRUCTOR MODE: If seminar is held in person, it will be at LAJC: 1000 Preston Ave. In-person-only opportunities may 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.
120820068
Law No.
LAW8645
Modified Type
Clinical
Cross Listed: No
Cross-Listed Course Mnemonic:
Concentrations: Health Law
Public Syllabus Link: None
Evaluation Portal Via LawWeb Opens:
Evaluation Portal Via LawWeb Closes: