The Civil Rights Enforcement Clinic offers second and third-year students the opportunity to enforce the civil rights laws of the United States by assisting in the investigation and litigation of cases in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Minnesota in Minneapolis.
The Clinic includes both classroom seminars and fieldwork. Classroom instruction will focus on the Civil Rights Act, the Fair Housing Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Equal Educational Opportunities Act, the Uniformed Service Members Employment and Reemployment Rights Act, and the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr., Hate Crimes Prevention Act, along with segments on statutory interpretation and federal investigation techniques and procedure.
In order to work on pending cases and investigations at a U.S. attorney’s office, all students must receive a federal security clearance by undergoing a security clearance check by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) required of all Assistant U.S Attorneys and non-legal staff working at and volunteering for the U.S. Department of Justice. Students MUST BE a United States citizen to be eligible for this clinic; dual citizenship or residence outside of the U.S. for a significant period of time may complicate the security clearance process.
- Class is at the US Attorney’s Office in Downtown Minneapolis
- An enrolled student must start participating in the federal security clearance by May 15th or they will be removed; enrolled students cannot drop the class after June 15th. The instructors will have a meeting with students in April/May to acquaint them with the course.
What to expect when working on cases and with clients: Following the initial class instruction in the fall, students will be assigned in the spring pending federal civil rights investigations and cases. They will work closely with Assistant U.S. Attorneys, investigators, and paralegals on investigation tactics, evidence gathering, pleading drafting, deposition preparation, document review, legal research, litigation strategy, and settlement negotiations in each of the pending matters to which they are assigned.
NOTE: This course requires certification pursuant to the student practice rule and is open to JD students only.