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Advocating For Children With Disabilities In Child Protection Cases, Joshua B. Kay Aug 2019

Advocating For Children With Disabilities In Child Protection Cases, Joshua B. Kay

Articles

Children with disabilities are maltreated at a higher rate than other children and overrepresented in child protection matters, yet most social service caseworkers, judges, child advocates, and other professionals involved in these cases receive little to no training about evaluating and addressing their needs. Child protection case outcomes for children with disabilities tend to differ from those of nondisabled children, with more disabled children experiencing a termination of their parents' rights and fewer being reunified with their parents or placed with kin. They also tend to experience longer waits for adoption. Furthermore, the poor outcomes that plague youth who age ...


Transferability: Helping Students And Attorneys Apply What They Already Know To New Situations (Part 1), Edward R. Becker Jan 2019

Transferability: Helping Students And Attorneys Apply What They Already Know To New Situations (Part 1), Edward R. Becker

Articles

Every fall, I work with my first year law students to begin developing their legal writing skills. They work hard learning how to analyze cases objectively, predict how a court might resolve a dispute, and convey their assessments to an experienced attorney. Their improvement from September to December is noticeable. They have only one semester of law school behind them and still have much to learn, but they’re on their way…In the second semester, we begin focusing on advocacy. The first assignment asks students to draft a pretrial brief. When I review the drafts, I’m struck by ...


Lawyer As Soothsayer: Exploring The Important Role Of Outcome Prediction In The Practice Of Law, Mark K. Osbeck Dec 2018

Lawyer As Soothsayer: Exploring The Important Role Of Outcome Prediction In The Practice Of Law, Mark K. Osbeck

Articles

Outcome prediction has always been an important part of practicing law. Clients rely heavily on their attorneys to provide accurate assessments of the potential legal consequences they face when making important decisions (such as whether to accept a plea bargain, or risk a conviction on a much more serious offense at trial). And yet, notwithstanding its enormous importance to the practice of law (and notwithstanding the handsome legal fees it commands), outcome prediction in the law remains a very imprecise endeavor. The reason for this inaccuracy is that the three principal tools lawyers have traditionally relied on to facilitate outcome ...


Using Appellate Clinics To Focus On Legal Writing Skills, Timothy Pinto May 2018

Using Appellate Clinics To Focus On Legal Writing Skills, Timothy Pinto

Articles

Five years ago, I went to lunch with a colleague. I was teaching a legal writing course to 1L students, and he taught in a clinic in which 2L and 3L students were required to write short motions and briefs. Several of his students had taken my writing class as 1Ls, and he had a question for me. "What the heck are you teaching these students?" he asked as we sat down. He explained that several of his students were struggling with preparing simple motions. They were not laying out facts clearly. They were not identifying key legal rules. In ...


The Downside Of Requiring Additional Experiential Courses In Law School, Douglas A. Kahn Mar 2017

The Downside Of Requiring Additional Experiential Courses In Law School, Douglas A. Kahn

Articles

In recent years, the bar has expressed dissatisfaction with what is considered by some to be inadequate preparation of law students to begin practicing law immediately after graduation. There are several reasons why this has become a matter of concern for the legal profession. The profession itself has undergone significant changes. Although there are a few exceptions, most law firms no longer wish to spend time training their young associates or allowing them much time to develop the skills they need. First, clients are unwilling to pay for the time a young lawyer spends in acquiring needed skills. Second, the ...


Reimagining Legal Education: Incorporating Live-Client Work Into The First-Year Curriculum, Nancy Vettorello, Beth Hirschfelder Wilensky Jan 2017

Reimagining Legal Education: Incorporating Live-Client Work Into The First-Year Curriculum, Nancy Vettorello, Beth Hirschfelder Wilensky

Articles

Since 2015, Legal Practice faculty have partnered with local legal services organizations and the law school’s own clinics to provide our 1L students with client interaction, under the close supervision of experienced attorneys. So far, our students have worked with the Michigan Immigrant Rights Center, Legal Services of South Central Michigan, and the school’s Unemployment Law Clinic.


Addressing Cultural Bias In The Legal Profession, Debra Chopp Jan 2017

Addressing Cultural Bias In The Legal Profession, Debra Chopp

Articles

Over the past two decades, there has been an outpouring of scholarship that explores the problem of implicit bias. Through this work, commentators have taken pains to define the phenomenon and to describe the ways in which it contributes to misunderstanding, discrimination, inequality, and more. This article addresses the role of implicit cultural bias in the delivery of legal services. Lawyers routinely represent clients with backgrounds and experiences that are vastly different from their own, and the fact of these differences can impede understanding, communication, and, ultimately, effective representation. While other professions, such as medicine and social work, have adopted ...


Culture As A Structural Problem In Indigent Defense, Eve Brensike Primus Jan 2016

Culture As A Structural Problem In Indigent Defense, Eve Brensike Primus

Articles

In Part I, I will describe the ways in which today's right-to-counsel challenges are similar to and different from those that faced the writers of the 1961 symposium. I will also explain in more detail why the structural conditions of criminal defense work to create (and, to some extent, always have created) a cultural problem in indigent defense delivery systems across the country. In Part II, I will discuss why I believe that we are, once again, facing a moment for potential reform, albeit reform that is different in scope and kind from that which was possible in the ...


Overstating The Satisfaction Of Lawyers, David L. Chambers Apr 2014

Overstating The Satisfaction Of Lawyers, David L. Chambers

Articles

Recent literature commonly reports US lawyers as disheartened and discontented, but more than two dozen statistically based studies report that the great majority of lawyers put themselves on the satisfied side of scales of job satisfaction. The claim of this article is that, in three ways, these statistically based studies convey an overly rosy impression of lawyers’ attitudes: first, that many of those who put themselves above midpoints on satisfaction scales are barely more positive than negative about their careers and often have profound ambivalence about their work; second, that surveys conducted at a single point in time necessarily fail ...


Clinical Collaborations: Going Global To Advance Social Entrepreneurship, Deborah Burand, Susan R. Jones, Jonathan Ng, Alicia E. Plerhoples Jan 2014

Clinical Collaborations: Going Global To Advance Social Entrepreneurship, Deborah Burand, Susan R. Jones, Jonathan Ng, Alicia E. Plerhoples

Articles

In the summer of 2012, transactional law clinics from three U.S. law schools: George Washington University; Georgetown University; and the University of Michigan launched a collaboration to serve a common client — Ashoka, a global nonprofit organization that supports close to 3,000 social entrepreneurs across 76 countries. While clinic collaborations within universities happen occasionally, clinic collaborations across universities are unusual. This essay focuses on the motivations, operations, lessons, and next steps of this cross-university, clinical collaboration aimed at advancing social entrepreneurship globally. Specifically, this essay examines why the collaboration was launched, how the collaboration is structured, what the collaboration ...


Overstating The Satisfaction Of Lawyers, David L. Chambers Aug 2013

Overstating The Satisfaction Of Lawyers, David L. Chambers

Articles

Recent literature commonly reports US lawyers as disheartened and discontented, but more than two dozen statistically based studies report that the great majority of lawyers put themselves on the satisfied side of scales of job satisfaction. The claim of this article is that, in three ways, these statistically based studies convey an overly rosy impression of lawyers’ attitudes: first, that many of those who put themselves above midpoints on satisfaction scales are barely more positive than negative about their careers and often have profound ambivalence about their work; second, that surveys conducted at a single point in time necessarily fail ...


Transactional Drafting: Using Law Firm Marketing Materials As A Research Resource For Teaching Drafting, Edward R. Becker Jan 2013

Transactional Drafting: Using Law Firm Marketing Materials As A Research Resource For Teaching Drafting, Edward R. Becker

Articles

Since I started teaching drafting, I would like to think that I have continued to learn some lessons about teaching both the substance and the skills of transactional drafting. One of those lessons that I am going to be talking about today is one that I stumbled across by happy accident rather than one that I consciously sought. Specifically, I want to talk about and highlight the ways that law students can use law firm marketing materials to increase their understanding of both drafting and lawyering skills in law school and, hopefully, in practice.


Child Welfare Cases Involving Mental Illness: Reflections On The Role And Responsibilities Of The Lawyer-Guardian Ad Litem, Frank E. Vandervort Jan 2012

Child Welfare Cases Involving Mental Illness: Reflections On The Role And Responsibilities Of The Lawyer-Guardian Ad Litem, Frank E. Vandervort

Articles

Child welfare cases involving mental illness suffered either by a child or his parent can be among the most difficult and perplexing that a child’s lawyerguardian ad litem (L-GAL) will handle. They may present daunting problems of accessing necessary and appropriate services as well as questions about whether and when such mental health problems can be resolved or how best to manage them. They also require the L-GAL to carefully consider crucially important questions—rarely with all the information one would like to have and too often with information that comes late in the case, is fragmented or glaringly ...


Learning From The Unique And Common Challenges: Clinical Legal Education In Jordan, Kimberly A. Thomas, Nisreen Mahasneh Jan 2012

Learning From The Unique And Common Challenges: Clinical Legal Education In Jordan, Kimberly A. Thomas, Nisreen Mahasneh

Articles

Legal education worldwide is undergoing scrutiny for its failure to graduate students who have the problem-solving abilities, skills, and professional values necessary for the legal profession.1 Additionally, law schools at universities in the Middle East have found themselves in an unsettled environment, where greater demands for practical education are exacerbated by several factors such as high levels of youth unemployment. More specifically, in Jordan there is a pressing need for universities to respond to this criticism and to accommodate new or different methods of legal education. Clinical legal education is one such method.3 We use the term "clinical ...


Building Resilience In Foster Children: The Role Of The Child's Advocate, Frank E. Vandervort, James Henry, Mark A. Sloane Jan 2012

Building Resilience In Foster Children: The Role Of The Child's Advocate, Frank E. Vandervort, James Henry, Mark A. Sloane

Articles

This Article provides an introduction to, and brief overview of trauma, its impact upon foster children, and steps children's advocates" can take to lessen or ameliorate the impact of trauma upon their clients. This Article begins in Part 11 by defining relevant terms. Part III addresses the prevalence of trauma among children entering the child welfare system. Part IV considers the neurodevelopmental (i.e., the developing brain) impact of trauma on children and will explore how that trauma may manifest emotionally and behaviorally. With this foundation in place, Part V discusses the need for a comprehensive trauma assessment including ...


The Illusory Right To Counsel, Eve Brensike Primus Jan 2011

The Illusory Right To Counsel, Eve Brensike Primus

Articles

Imagine a woman wrongly accused of murdering her fianc6. She is arrested and charged with first-degree murder. If convicted, she faces a mandatory sentence of life without the possibility of parole. Her family scrapes together enough money to hire two attorneys to represent her at trial. There is no physical evidence connecting her to the murder, but the prosecution builds its case on circumstantial inferences. Her trial attorneys admit that they were so cocky and confident that she would be acquitted that they did not bother to investigate her case or file a single pre-trial motion. Rather, they waived the ...


Legal Reasoning And Scientific Reasoning, Phoebe C. Ellsworth Jan 2011

Legal Reasoning And Scientific Reasoning, Phoebe C. Ellsworth

Articles

In my presentation for the 2010 Meador Lectures on Rationality, I chose to compare legal reasoning and scientific reasoning. Both law and science pride themselves on the rationality of their intellectual methods and believe that those methods are designed to analyze questions and reach the correct conclusions by means of reason, free from cognitive or emotional biases. Of course, both law and science often fall short of this ideal at all levels, from the decisions about individual legal cases or scientific studies to the acceptance of general theories. In many ways, the biases that mislead legal and scientific thinkers are ...


The Hydra, Carl E. Schneider Jul 2010

The Hydra, Carl E. Schneider

Articles

Almost nobody favors long consent forms for prospective research subjects. Almost everybody thinks they interfere with informed consent's purpose-good decisions. Nevertheless, almost everybody believes consent forms have long been getting longer. Years ago, Paul Appelbaum lamented the "tendency to cram ever more information into consent forms." Weeks ago, Ilene Albala and her colleagues (one of them Appelbaum) reported in IRE: Ethics & Human Research that the length of one institutional review board's forms "increased roughly linearly by an average of 1.5 pages per decade. In the 1970s, the average consent form was less than one page long and ...


The Challenges Of Calculating The Benefits Of Providing Access To Legal Services, J. J. Prescott Jan 2010

The Challenges Of Calculating The Benefits Of Providing Access To Legal Services, J. J. Prescott

Articles

In this invited essay, I explore how policymakers and other public-interested actors have empirically calculated the benefits of providing low-income access to civil legal services in the past, and how they might improve upon existing methods going forward. My argument proceeds in five parts. First, I briefly explain the optimal approach to allocating public funds from a welfare economics perspective. Second, I introduce the challenges of valuing “benefits” in the context of the public provision of legal services. Third, I summarize and critique existing attempts to quantify the benefits of and need for legal services funding. Specifically, I review, criticize ...


Doing Good While Doing Deals: Early Lesson In Launching An International Transactions Clinic, Deborah Burand Jan 2010

Doing Good While Doing Deals: Early Lesson In Launching An International Transactions Clinic, Deborah Burand

Articles

That is not to say that the launch of this clinic was easy. Four of the most challenging issues the ITC faced in its first year of operation were: 1) developing a client pool, 2) defining client projects so as to be appropriate to student clinicians’ skill levels and capacity, 3) making use of efficient and inexpensive technology to foster international communication with clients and transaction management, and 4) tapping supervisory attorney talent capable of supporting student clinicians in their international transactional work. The first two issues were the biggest challenges that we faced in launching the ITC and so ...


Protecting A Parent's Right To Counsel In Child Welfare Cases, Vivek Sankaran Jan 2009

Protecting A Parent's Right To Counsel In Child Welfare Cases, Vivek Sankaran

Articles

A national consensus is emerging that zealous leagal representation for parents is crucial to ensure that the child welfare system produces just outcomes for children. Parents' lawyers protect important constitutional rights, prevent the unnecessary entry of children into foster care and guide parents through a complex system.


Starting Out: Changing Patterns Of First Jobs For Michigan Law School Graduates, David L. Chambers, Terry K. Adams Jan 2009

Starting Out: Changing Patterns Of First Jobs For Michigan Law School Graduates, David L. Chambers, Terry K. Adams

Articles

In the early 1950s, the typical graduate of Michigan Law began his career working as an associate in a law firm with four other lawyers and earned about $5,000 in his first year. Surprising to us today, in his new job he would have earned slightly less than other classmates whose first jobs were in government. Fifty years later, in the early 2000s, the typical graduate still started out as an associate in a law firm, but the firm she worked for had more than 400 lawyers. She earned about $114,000 in her first year, about three times ...


Who We Were And Who We Are: How Michigan Law Students Have Changed Since The 1950s: Findings From 40 Years Of Alumni Surveys, David L. Chambers, Terry K. Adams Jan 2009

Who We Were And Who We Are: How Michigan Law Students Have Changed Since The 1950s: Findings From 40 Years Of Alumni Surveys, David L. Chambers, Terry K. Adams

Articles

For 40 consecutive years, from 1967 to 2006, the Law School surveyed its alumni regarding their lives and careers. The project began in 1967 with the mailing of a questionnaire to the class of 1952 shortly before their 15th reunion. The results proved interesting enough that surveys were sent each year thereafter to the class 15 years out. In 1973, the classes 5 years out were added to the survey.


Advocating For The Constitutional Rights Of Nonresident Fathers, Vivek Sankaran Jan 2008

Advocating For The Constitutional Rights Of Nonresident Fathers, Vivek Sankaran

Articles

Months after a child welaare case is petitioned, a nonresident father appears in court and requests custody of his children who are living in foster care. Little is known about the father, and immediately, the system-judge, caseworkers, and attorneys view him with suspicion and caution, inquiring about his whereabouts and his prior involvement in the children's lives. Those doubts, in turn, raise complicated questions about his legal rights to his children. As a practioner working in the child welfare system, you're likely to face this scenario. The largest percentage of child victims of abuse and neglect come from ...


Navigating The Interstate Compact On The Placement Of Children: Advocacy Tips For Child Welfare Attorneys, Vivek Sankaran Jan 2008

Navigating The Interstate Compact On The Placement Of Children: Advocacy Tips For Child Welfare Attorneys, Vivek Sankaran

Articles

Legal advocates across the country confront hundreds of cases like Samira's each year. Many of those cases end with arms raised in frustration due to what appears to be a lack of options after the receiving state either fails to complete the home study or denies a placement. That frustration is understandabkle given the absence of language in the Compact outlining any process to compe states to complete home studies or to permit judicial review of placement denials. Yet, as advocates, we must move beyond this initial state of paralysis and develop creative ways to vindicate the rights of ...


Interdisciplinary Clinical Teaching Of Child Welfare Practice To Law And Social Work Students When World Views Collide, Kathleen Coulborn Faller, Frank E. Vandervort Jan 2007

Interdisciplinary Clinical Teaching Of Child Welfare Practice To Law And Social Work Students When World Views Collide, Kathleen Coulborn Faller, Frank E. Vandervort

Articles

Because child welfare cases in the world of professional practice require interdisciplinary collaboration, it would seem to follow that graduate students, who will become child welfare professionals, should be trained together, both in the classroom and in clinical settings. However, the implementation of interdisciplinary training is far from straightforward. In this Article, we focus on law and social work students. First, we describe the roles of lawyers and social worker in child welfare work. Next we argue that interdisciplinary classroom teaching is easier than clinical teaching, proposing a series of topics to be covered in an interdisciplinary course. Finally, we ...


Structural Reform In Criminal Defense: Relocating Ineffective Assistance Of Counsel Claims, Eve Brensike Primus Jan 2007

Structural Reform In Criminal Defense: Relocating Ineffective Assistance Of Counsel Claims, Eve Brensike Primus

Articles

This Article suggests a structural reform that could solve two different problems in criminal defense representation. The first problem is that the right to effective trial counsel lacks a meaningful remedy. Defendants are generally not permitted to raise ineffective assistance of counsel claims until collateral review. Given that collateral review typically occurs years after trial, most convicted defendants have completed their sentences by that time and therefore have little incentive to pursue ineffectiveness claims. Moreover, there is no right to counsel on collateral review, and it is unrealistic to expect defendants to navigate the complicated terrain of an ineffectiveness claim ...


Michigan's First Woman Lawyer: Sarah Killgore Wertman, Margaret A. Leary Mar 2006

Michigan's First Woman Lawyer: Sarah Killgore Wertman, Margaret A. Leary

Articles

Sarah Killgore Wertman was the first woman in the country to both graduate from law school and be admitted to the bar. Thus, she was Michigan's first woman lawyer in two senses: She was the first woman to graduate from the University of Michigan Law School, and the first woman admitted to the Michigan bar. Others preceded her in entering law school, graduating from law school, or being admitted to the bar, but she was the first to accomplish all three. Her story illustrates much about the early days of women in legal education and the practice of law ...


Abuse Prevention 2005, James J. White Jan 2006

Abuse Prevention 2005, James J. White

Articles

Today I do not debate the empirical question (what is the cause of the increase in bankruptcy filings?) nor do I address the buried moral question (who deserves the protection of bankruptcy law?). Rather, I speculate about the consequences of 2005 amendments to the Bankruptcy Code and about the reasons it will achieve or fail to achieve the goals of its sponsors. Along the way I hope to learn something about how law changes, or fails to change behavior.


A Comment On Nielsen's And Albiston's Sample Selection Methodology, And Implications For The 'Have-Nots', Laura Nyantung Beny Jan 2006

A Comment On Nielsen's And Albiston's Sample Selection Methodology, And Implications For The 'Have-Nots', Laura Nyantung Beny

Articles

Professors Nielsen and Albiston revisit the 1978 article, The Public Interest Law Industry, by Joel F. Handler, Betsy Ginsberg, and Arthur Snow, which presents an empirical study of the public interest law ("PIL") industry in the mid-1970s. At that time, there were only eighty-six PIL firms or public interest law organizations ("PILOs") in existence in the United States. Then, PILOs tended to be small, had relatively small operating budgets, received most of their funds from private sources, and tended to focus most of their effort in a single substantive area, among other characteristics noted by Professors Nielsen and Albiston. However ...