Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2000

Abstract

All lawyers' codes of professional ethics in the United States expect members of the bar to perform legal services for low-income persons. In practice, as we all know, many lawyers perform a great deal of such service while others do little or none. By much the same token, the accreditation rules of the American Bar Association urge all law schools to provide students with opportunities to do pro bono legal work; by much the same token, some schools in the United States have extensive programs for their students but many do not. In 1998, the Association of American Law Schools created a Commission on Pro Bono and Public Service Opportunities to help law schools improve their pro bono programs. The Commission began its work by reviewing available research and by surveying all law schools to learn the current extent of pro bono services by law students. The Commission learned that nearly all law schools offer clinical programs through which students can eam credit for providing legal services to low-income clients, but that schools were much more varying in the extent to which they gave students the opportunity to provide voluntary services without credit.


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