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American Bar Association

  Children's Rights Litigation




1536 Hewitt Ave.
St. Paul, MN 55104-1284
Telephone:       (651) 523-2898
Fax:                 (651) 523-2400
Website:          http://law.hamline.edu/Content.aspx?id=4294986696


100% Children’s Law
Does Use Volunteer Attorneys


The Child Advocacy Clinic offers the opportunity to appear in juvenile court, family court and administrative hearings concerning children. Students in this clinic investigate and advocate directly for children who have been abused or neglected, children subject to adoption, guardianship, or third-party custody proceedings, and minors seeking to live independently. A weekly classroom component teaches the advocacy, negotiation, and communication skills needed to work with and on behalf of children in the court system, and provides a great introduction to issues that arise in family law practice. The Child Advocacy Clinic is taught by Professor Mary Jo Hunter and is one of the four clinics that operates on-site in Hamline’s Clinic Law Office.



600 Nicollet Ave., Ste. 301
Minneapolis, MN 55402
Telephone:       (612) 333-1183
                        (800) 882-6722
Fax:                 (612) 333-4927
Website:          http://www2.mnbar.org/sections/children/index.asp


100% Children’s Law
Does Use Volunteer Attorneys


The Children and the Law Section is a project of the Minnesota State Bar Association which began in 1990. The Section currently staffs high school legal clinics where volunteers do on-site consultation and screening for the students. The clinics are coordinated through an agency called the Volunteer Lawyers Network. Volunteer attorneys are recruited through Section members and bar association meetings.


The Section holds training sessions at least once a year to staff the high school clinics, as well as one hour of CLE training at a monthly meeting.



450 N. Syndicate, Ste. 315
St. Paul, MN 55104
Telephone:       (651) 644-4438
Fax:                 (651) 646 4404
Email:              info@clcmn.org
Website:          www.clcmn.org


100% Children’s Law
Does Use Volunteer Attorneys


CLC is appointed by the court to provide legal representation to children who are either wards of the state—“legal orphans”—or have been removed from their homes because they are in need of protection. CLC also represents foster children who request help. CLC provides this quality representation free of charge. Currently, CLC represents over 560 children.

Since 1995, CLC, with the help of over 300 volunteer attorneys, has represented more than 1,300 foster children. When children are taken from abusive or neglectful parents, they need to know their legal rights. CLC provides a multidisciplinary team of volunteer and staff attorneys and a social worker to listen to the children and help them navigate the complicated systems that control their lives. These advocates help guide the children by empowering them to speak up for what they want. CLC advocates help children understand the system and help judges and other court workers understand what the children want.

CLC’s staff attorneys and social worker provide expertise and years of experience to volunteer attorneys to support their efforts in representing foster children, including knowledge about specific laws and services available for the children.



190 Mondale Hall
229 19th Ave. So.
Minneapolis, MN 55455
Telephone:       (612) 625-5515
Fax:                 (612) 624-5771
Website:          www.law.umn.edu/current/clinics.html


Does Not Use Volunteer Attorneys


The Child Advocacy Clinic is a two-semester clinic offered annually since 1995. Currently six students participate in the Clinic and handle approximately 30 cases a year. The Clinic also has a project with the Hennepin County Public Defender’s Office to provide representation to juveniles in CHIPS (Children in Need of Protection and Services) matters in juvenile court. Additional cases involve family court custody and Guardian ad Litem representation for the Hennepin County Guardian ad Litem program.


In addition, the Indian Child Welfare Act Clinic, offered since 1996, gives students practical experience in handling family law and juvenile law cases with a special emphasis on the federal Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) passed by Congress in 1978.


The Special Education Law Clinic offers advanced-standing law students the opportunity to work with and represent children with disabilities and their families. The law students, working under the supervision of an experienced school law attorney, assist with special education legal questions, reviewing special education documents, participating in conciliation conferences and mediations, working informally with schools to resolve disputes, and provide representation in state-level administrative complaints, hearings, and court actions. Law students may also participate in research projects and legislative and administrative proceedings.


2929 4th Ave. South, Ste. 201
Minneapolis, MN 55408
Telephone:       (612) 332-4668
Fax:                 (612) 334-5755
Website:          http://legalaidmpls.org/


20% Children’s Law


The Youth Law Project is devoted to working with at-risk youth in Hennepin County through the Southside Office of the Legal Aid Society of Minneapolis. The office was established in 1978 and is staffed by one full-time attorney, and one half-time attorney and one half-time paralegal. Working with local law schools and the Minnesota Justice Foundation, an organization established to encourage pro bono work by law students, the Society represents children in a variety of legal areas. Clients are referred from Juvenile Court, social service agencies, schools, health care professionals, other lawyers and word of mouth. Approximately 200 cases a year are children’s law cases. Training is provided as needed. Some training qualifies for CLE credit. The Society was responsible for impact litigation regarding foster care payments for children in relatives’ homes.