Get out of the classroom. And onto the case.
Clinics provide an opportunity for students to work on real-world legal cases. By handling actual cases, students make the transition from legal theory to legal practice. We take pride in the fact that our clinics provide free legal services to clients who could not otherwise afford to hire an attorney. It is one of the many ways we give back to our community.
Under the supervision of a faculty clinician, students provide wills and estate planning services to American Indians owning trust or restricted property in Oklahoma. Clinic students are primarily responsible for all case-related work including fact gathering, developing legal theories, and initial document drafting. Students are faced with a challenge since passing down tribal land due to the relationship between the U.S. Government and tribes can make estate planning more complicated. During the semester, students are expected to provide legal services for average of 6 to 10 hours per week outside of class time. The classroom component complements students’ field work.
Prerequisites: Legal Profession and Wills, Trusts, and Estates. American Indian Law, or Tribal Law is recommended, but not a prerequisite.
Oklahoma City University School of Law is home to the Oklahoma Innocence Project, the only Innocence Clinic in the state. Students work to identify and rectify wrongful convictions by conducting investigations and making recommendations regarding litigation. Students draft pleadings, motions, briefs, and appear in court to obtain post-conviction relief for the clinic’s clients. Students in the clinic participate in weekly meetings devoted to training and status of the case assessment and investigation. The clinic is a continuation of the Wrongful Conviction course.
Prerequisites: Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure, Evidence, and Wrongful Conviction
Note: The clinic is a classroom activity. “The Oklahoma Innocence Project” refers to the scope of activity that takes place outside of the class including investigation, litigation, and other work.
The Norick Municipal Law Research Clinic, in partnership with the City of Oklahoma City’s Municipal Counselor’s Office, provides students an opportunity to explore and research municipal law. Students are paired with attorney mentors and research issues handled by the office including criminal justice, civil litigation, labor and employment, land use and economic development, trusts, utilities, elections, and finance. Students develop professional skills through live client meetings, in-depth research, and drafting formal research memoranda. The semester-long experience culminates with a client presentation where students present and discuss their research findings.
No prerequisites required.
An application is required for this clinic.
The Bail and Bond Reform Clinic is offered in partnership with the Oklahoma County Public Defender’s office so that students gain an intensive experience in indigent criminal defense work. In the classroom portion of the Clinic, students will learn the basics of criminal defense work, including client representation, ethics, criminal pre-trial work, and docket practice. Students will spend five to seven hours a week in the Public Defender’s office representing clients in bail hearings and other misdemeanor proceedings.
Students who participate in the Bail and Bond Reform Clinic assist the Oklahoma County Public Defenders Office in identifying candidates for pre-trial release charged with felony and misdemeanor crimes. Students participate in the arraignment process where bail is determined, assess service needs of clients, file motions for clients to receive bail hearings, and advocate for those clients in the district court and through appeal, if necessary. Students in the Bail and Bond Clinic not only assist individuals facing criminal felony and misdemeanor charges but also assist those individuals who are at risk because of probation compliance issues by appearing in court to advocate for the reduction of fees and costs. This type of experiential learning forever changes the course of a defendant’s life and provides students with practical lawyering experience. The Oklahoma County Public Defenders Office manages an estimated 14,000 probable cause hearings per year. This means that students participating in the Bail Bond Clinic during a typical semester will assist in the representation of approximately 3,520 individuals making initial appearances before a Special Judge or District Court Judge in Oklahoma County on criminal felony, misdemeanor, and probable cause affidavits. The students are either aiding these individuals to obtain release from pretrial detention or aiding these individuals in receiving significant bond reductions.
Prerequisites: Students must have completed Criminal Law. Students must have either completed Criminal Procedure or be taking it concurrently with the clinic.
An application is required for this clinic.