Edwin F. Mandel Legal Aid Clinic
The Mandel Clinic is a legal aid office. The mission of the Clinic is to teach students effective advocacy skills, professional ethics, and the effect of legal institutions on the poor; to examine and apply legal theory while serving as advocates for people typically denied access to justice; and to reform legal education and the legal system to be more responsive to the interests of the poor. The Mandel Clinic renders assistance to indigent clients. Students assume responsibility, under the guidance of the full-time clinical faculty, for all aspects of the work. The program is intended to complement and enrich the theoretical study of law with experience in interviewing clients, investigating facts, dealing with adverse parties, working with government agencies, negotiating on behalf of clients, drafting contracts and legislation and participating in court and administrative proceedings. In addition, the Clinic seeks to acquaint students with the problems of professional responsibility and with the special issues of low-income clients and other disadvantaged groups. Students are encouraged to identify legal remedies for recurrent problems through new legislation, improvements in government services and benefits, assisting community-based groups and bar associations in their reform efforts, test cases and other types of law reform litigation.
Under Illinois Supreme Court Rules, students who have completed sixty percent of the credits needed for graduation are authorized to appear on behalf of clients in the state trial courts and administrative agencies. Students may also represent clients in the Illinois Appellate Court, the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois and the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.
6020 South University Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637
phone: (773) 702-9611
fax: (773) 702-2063
The current Mandel Clinic projects include:
- Abrams Environmental Law Clinic
- Civil Rights and Police Accountability Project
- Criminal and Juvenile Justice Project
- Employment Discrimination Project
- Federal Criminal Justice Clinic
- Housing Initiative
- International Human Rights Clinic
- Mental Health Project
- Social Service Project
The goals of the Edwin F. Mandel Legal Aid Clinic have long been to help those who need assistance and to teach students the practical ins and outs of legal practice at the same time. Over the past half century, the methods and models used to achieve these goals have changed, but the desire to instill in students an understanding of the value and need for public-assistance law never wavered.