Pro Bono Program Student Newsletter

Pro Bono Program Student Newsletter: Monday, February 2, 2015

About the Pro Bono Newsletter

The mission of the UNC School of Law Pro Bono Program is to increase the provision of high quality, low-cost legal services to North Carolina residents in need by empowering lawyers to accept more pro bono cases and creating a life-long commitment to pro bono work among UNC Law students. This newsletter supports our mission by providing current students with a comprehensive list of ways to get involved in Pro Bono work while still a student at UNC Law, as well as offering context for the good work our students do through news and information. Look for the Pro Bono Newsletter in your inbox every Monday at noon!

Attorney-Sponsored Projects

To secure a spot on an Attorney-Sponsored Project, you must sign up at the Pro Bono Bulletin Board near the student mailboxes. For other questions please contact Samuel Williams, Attorney Projects Coordinator, at uncprobonoprojects@gmail.com.

Criminal Record Screening for Expungement

Disability Rights of NC

Time: 2-4 hours per week
Location: Remote
Due Date: April 30, 2015

Disability Rights NC is starting a project where we are receiving direct referrals from Managed Care Organizations of clients who are seeking housing and employment, but having difficulty as a result of their criminal record. We will be screening individuals who will eventually be referred to Legal Aid of NC for direct representation. We are looking for a group (4-5) students who can assist us with the review of an applicants criminal records and assist with determining eligibility for relief.

Criminal Defense Trial and Motion Preparation (Durham Superior Court)

Charns & Donovan Law Firm

Time: 10 hours
Location: Onsite
Due Date: March 16, 2015

I would like the help of some law students on the defense of an accused who was stopped by Durham police for an alleged traffic offense there is a Motion to Suppress for an unconstitutional stop). The defense evidence is that the officer assaulted the accused, threatened to shoot the accused and the officer's gun discharged leading to the officer's injury. Our evidence is that the officer shot himself. We've given notice of self-defense. I was appointed by the Public Defender as the accused is indigent.

Legal Aid Eligibility Screening

Legal Aid of NC Expunction Project

Time: Responsible for making 5 phone calls (approximately 2.5 hours)
Due Date: February 20, 2015

Students will be interviewing applicants for financial eligibility for the UNC Spring Break Expunction Trip. There will be a training where students learn how to screen for legal aid eligibility on Wednesday, January 28 at 12:00 p.m. Students will then sign-up for a one week shift where they will be asked to make no more than 5 calls. The one week shifts are Feb. 2, Feb. 9, and Feb. 16. Students who have already gone through training will be exempt from training and the training will be recorded for those who are unavailable to attend.

Attend NC General Assembly Appropriations Committee Meetings

NC Coalition Against Domestic Violence

NCCADV is a statewide non-profit agency which supports the approximately 90 domestic violence agencies across the 100 counties of North Carolina through technical assistance, training, and policy/legislative advocacy. Domestic Violence agencies are funded in large part through North Carolina government funds. During the North Carolina legislative session, NCCADV monitors appropriations discussions closely in order to ensure that this vital funding to DV programs is maintained without cuts that could greatly impact the ability to help survivors and their children escape abusive partners. NCCADV seeks law student Pro Bono volunteers interested in policy and the legislative process to attend one or more Appropriations Committee Meetings each week to monitor discussions for issues that would impact funding to domestic violence agencies and immediately notify NCCADV's lobbyist when issues of funding impacting DV.

Hours: 3 per week (Tuesday, Wednesday, and/or Thursday morning; between 8:30 and 10:00 a.m.)

Student Group-Sponsored Projects

If you would like your project to appear below, please contact Nicole Daniels, Group Projects Coordinator, at n.daniels@unc.edu.

Community Legal Project (CLP)

Interest Meeting/Training
Date, Time: Wednesday, January 28, 12:00 p.m.
Location: Room 5046

The Community Legal Project (CLP) partners with the Compass Center for Women and Families to provide free legal information to Compass Center clients. Students will interview clients, research legal questions related to family law and landlord/tenant law issues, and compose an informational memo that will be reviewed by a licensed attorney. This is a great project for students interested in gaining research and writing skills and students who enjoy interacting with clients!

Contact: Leah Arnold (larnold@email.unc.edu) and Caline Hou (ckhou@live.unc.edu)

DVAP's Subpoena Defense Project

Date: Thursday, February 5 (Training)
Time: 6-8 p.m.
Location: Room 5048

The Subpoena Defense Project will provide legal information to non-profit domestic violence agencies that receive subpoenas for client records. Students who participate in the Subpoena Defense Project will provide information to agencies regarding what types of records must be disclosed and what information can remain confidential. Participation is open to all students. All students may assist in drafting documents for agencies who seek assistance responding to subpoenas. Certified second semester second-year students and third-year students may assist in representing the agencies in court, should the agencies need representation. If you are interested in attending the training, please sign up online.

Contact: Lindsey Brown (lindsbro@live.unc.edu); Caline Hou (ckhou@live.unc.edu)

Pro Bono Program Initiatives

Cancer Project Upcoming Training

The Cancer Project is offering a Spring training opportunity for students who were unable to attend Fall training. This will require students to independently watch videos of Fall training materials, as well as to attend lunchtime practice sessions on February 10 and February 12. You must be available to attend both sessions. Previously trained students who would like a refresher course are welcome to join us as well.

Please RSVP to unclawcancerproject@gmail.com and let us know that you intend on completing this Spring training process, or if you just want to attend the practice sessions as a refresher. After you RSVP, you will receive access to the videos and training materials that you will need to review in full prior to February 10. Don't miss this valuable opportunity to learn and serve!

Volunteer with Lawyer on the Line

Open to all classes!

Interested in gaining some legal experience in employment law? Here are three reasons to volunteer with Lawyer on the Line:

  1. Client interaction (you, alone, interview the client and relay feedback)
  2. Mentorship Opportunities (it is easy to establish relationships with practicing attorneys who will serve as your mentor for the case)
  3. Manageable time commitment (3-4 hours over 2 weeks)

Contact: Kinnari Bhojani (kbhojani@live.unc.edu) or Patrick Redmon (patrickredmon@gmail.com)

News and Special Events

Apply for a Spring Break Trip!

Deadline to apply for spring break trips is February 6! Access the application at http://goo.gl/forms/4UlBjqYjQE. There will be a Wills Trip to Boone, NC, and an Expunction Trip to Canton, NC. Contact Jamie Rudd and Madison Waller with questions at unclawtrips2014@gmail.com.


To add items or provide feedback, please contact Sylvia Novinsky, Assistant Dean for Public Service Programs, or Jared Smith, Research Assistant for Public Service Programs.

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