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Course Details

Civil Practice Clinic (Rulli/Al-Khatib/Spiegel)

Spring 2024   LAW 652-001  

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Faculty
Louis S. Rulli

Practice Professor of Law, Director of Civil Practice Clinic & Legislative Clinic

lrulli@law.upenn.edu
Jeremy Spiegel

Lecturer in Law

jspiegel@law.upenn.edu
Alia Al-Khatib

Clinical Legal Supervisor & Lecturer in Law

aliaalkh@law.upenn.edu
Additional Information
Experiential Course

Yes

Skills Training
Oral Presentations
Team Projects
Drafting Legal Documents
Other Professional Skills: Client interviewing, case planning, negotiation, courtroom and administrative hearing evidence and advocacy skills. Professional responsibility issues arising in litigation practice.

Grading
100% Other (Class participation counts toward grading, along with all clinical case work, simulations, exercises, and assignments.)

Satisfies Senior Writing Requirement

No

Location

Class meets in person.

Course Continuity
Students are encouraged to stay home if you are ill or experience flu-like symptoms. If you miss a class for any reason, it is still your responsibility to make up the work missed.

I offer the following to students who miss class due to illness:

- If you are absent due to illness or some other unavoidable circumstance, email me and I can make PowerPoint slides or other class materials available to you.

Meeting Times/Location
TR 1:30PM - 2:50PM
Tanenbaum Hall 142

Category
Clinics/Externships

Credits
7.0

PLEASE SEE IMPORTANT ENROLLMENT PROCEDURES FOR CLINICS AVAILABLE ON THE REGISTRATION INSTRUCTION PAGE.

The Civil Practice Clinic examines firsthand the challenging issues that confront lawyers who represent low-income clients in civil disputes and litigation. Under close faculty supervision, students will serve as litigators in the Penn Legal Assistance Office, a teaching law firm providing legal representation to actual clients whose interests are directly at stake in state and federal court proceedings and in administrative agency hearings. Students will interview and counsel clients, develop case theories, draft pleadings and briefs, negotiate with opposing parties, and provide legal representation in formal adjudicatory hearings under federal and state student practice rules. Students will be assigned cases in which they will have primary responsibility in a broad range of substantive areas, such as landlord-tenant, quiet title and homeownership, consumer debt, wage theft, social security disability, civil forfeiture, guardianship, and civil rights. The skills and experience obtained in this course will serve students throughout their professional careers, whether or not they choose to pursue litigation practice.

In addition to their casework as lawyers, students will engage in classroom seminars twice weekly to obtain training in basic interactive skills (e.g., interviewing, counseling, negotiating) and to discuss in a collegial setting issues of case development, strategy and professional responsibility which arise in the Clinic's cases. Students will also participate in videotaped simulations utilizing trained actors as a means of enhancing skills development. Most important, students will be assigned to a faculty supervisor with whom they will meet regularly to receive close supervision and constructive feedback. Students will develop competence in basic lawyering skills as well as self-reflection, acquiring an ability to analyze what it is they do as lawyers and to learn from their own experiences.

The Penn Legal Assistance Office is located in Silverman Hall which includes client interview and conference rooms (equipped with video recording equipment), and computerized student work and research areas. Fieldwork and classroom components of the course are graded separately. Class attendance is mandatory.

N.B.: You may not enroll in this course if: a) you are enrolled in another clinical course, or an externship in the same semester; or b) you are responsible for 1 or more incomplete grades at the beginning of the semester without express permission from the Clinic Director. You must appear at the first meeting of the course, or you may be automatically dropped from the course (unless you have advance permission from the instructor). PLEASE NOTE: the clinic is not just a class, it’s a professional commitment to clients, peers, and faculty. If you are enrolled in a clinic you will have until Nov. 27, 2023, at 5pm to confirm and commit to your seat. Additional instructions will be provided via email after you are enrolled. After you confirm and commit, you will be fully enrolled in the clinic and may not drop without permission from the instructor and Dean of Students.

Students who elect to use their enrollment in the Civil Practice Clinic toward their public service requirement will receive one less credit for this course.

The Rules of Professional Conduct is available for free download on the PA Supreme Court's website.

Here is the link: https://www.padisciplinaryboard.org/for-attorneys/rules/rule/3/the-rules-of-professional-conduct.

Course Concentrations

Skills Learning outcomes: Demonstrate an understanding of the individual course skill; Demonstrate the ability to receive and implement feedback; Demonstrate an understanding of how and when the individual course skill is employed in practice.

Courts and the Judicial System Learning outcomes: Demonstrate a core understanding of both substantive and procedural issues in the operation of our legal system; Perform legal analysis in the context of procedural issues and the judicial process; Communicate effectively on topics related to procedure and the judicial process; Demonstrate an understanding of how procedural issues and the judicial process affect all other area of our legal system.

Employment Law and Employee Benefits Learning outcomes: Demonstrate a core understanding of employment law and employee benefits; Perform legal analysis in the context of employment law and employee benefits; Communicate effectively on topics related to employment law and employee benefits; Demonstrate an understanding of how employment law and employee benefits affect other areas of law.

Property and Real Estate Law Learning outcomes: Demonstrate a core understanding of property and real estate law; Perform legal analysis in the context of property and real estate law; Communicate effectively on topics related to property and real estate law; Demonstrate an understanding of how property and real estate law affect other areas of law.

Administrative and Regulatory Law Learning outcomes: Demonstrate a core understanding of administrative and regulatory law and the administrative process, including the role of statutory authorization and work of administrative agencies; Perform legal analysis in the context of administrative and regulatory law; Communicate effectively on topics related to administrative and regulatory law; Demonstrate an understanding of the role administrative and regulatory law play in our legal system and in society as a whole.

Professional Responsibility and Ethics Learning outcomes: Demonstrate an understanding of how the law affects, and is affected by, the individual course topic; Perform legal analysis in the context of the individual course topic; Communicate effectively on the legal and other aspects of the individual course topic; Demonstrate the ability to use other disciplines to analyze legal issues relevant to the individual course topic, including economics, philosophy, and sociology, as appropriate.

Public Interest Learning outcomes: Demonstrate a core understanding of the varied legal aspects of public interest law; Perform legal analysis in the context of public interest law; Communicate effectively on topics related to public interest law; Demonstrate an understanding of how public interest law is connected to and affected by a wide variety of legal and regulatory structures and doctrines.


Textbooks

"Essential Lawyering Skills: Interviewing, Counseling, Negotiation, and Persuasive Fact Analysis" by Stefan H. Krieger (Author), Richard K. Neumann Jr. (Author), Renée M. Hutchins (Author)
Edition: 6th
Publisher: Aspen Pub
ISBN: 9781543808889
Required

"Rules of Professional Conduct - available for free download on the PA Supreme Court's website" by Pennsylvania Supreme Court
Publisher: Disp Board
Required