Clinic: Legislative Lawyering

Course Information

Registration Information

Meeting Times

Day Time Location
FRI 9:10 - 11:40 am CCJ 3.312

Evaluation Method

Type Date Time Location


The Legislative Lawyering Clinic prepares students for intellectually-rewarding careers as legislative lawyers—lawyers with a keen understanding of how law is created and a strong set of skills in reading and crafting legal texts. The Clinic does not train students to become lobbyists or political strategists. It prepares lawyers who combine substantive legal knowledge with political understanding to produce good law and good policy—and thus furthers the public service mission of The University and The School of Law to train future state, national, and international leaders. Clinic students undertake projects for nonprofit organizations, state agencies, and political subdivisions that advance the public interest. The Clinic does not take individual legislators and committees as clients. Clinic projects allow students to learn and refine legislative lawyering skills, including legislative drafting, problem-solving, interviewing, negotiation, and oral advocacy skills as they handle their client's legislative problems. Students will also explore ethical issues unique to legislative lawyering while working on behalf of a client. Students will develop a document toolbox for clients that includes the full range of documents used by legislators, their staffs, and advocates to analyze and explain proposed legislation or regulations. The Legislative Lawyering Clinic offers students meaningful participation with adequate structure in the legislative process. In addition to the substantive abilities described above, the classroom component also covers the substantive law of legislating such as the law of appropriations, delegation of powers to agencies and private entities, and other fundamental concepts. Also covered are the legislative and administrative processes, mock hearings and negotiations, and real-world viewpoints. The Texas Legislature will be in session during the Spring 2013 semester. To obtain the maximum benefit from clinic enrollment, students should expect to spend a substantial amount of time at the Texas Capitol. The Legislature's major workdays are Tuesdays and Wednesdays, with Thursdays being added as the end of the semester approaches. It is strongly recommended that students arrange their schedules so that each week they have significant blocks of time available for fieldwork during this crucial midweek period. Students who have taken the Legislation or Texas Legislature: Process and Procedure courses are encouraged to apply but those courses are not prerequisites for enrollment in the Clinic. Permission of the instructor is required to register. An application is required. Enrollment is limited. To apply, interested students should submit a completed application with supporting documents to Anna Borne, Clinic Administrator, by e-mail to A copy of the application must also be provided to the instructor by e-mail to Applications are due by 5:00 p.m. on Friday, October 12, 2012.