Griffith University Social Justice Lawyering Clinic

QPILCH and Griffith University Law School established QPILCH's first student clinic in 2002. Senior law students undertake initial research and assessment of applications for public interest referral. Students also assist with QPILCH projects. Six students attend first semester each year for one day a week, and are supervised by a QPILCH solicitor. QPILCH could not have processed the number of applications it received in its early years without the support of this clinic. We thank Professor Jeff Giddings for his expertise and enthusiasm in establishing this clinic.

Daily program

The students start their day in discussion of general public interest issues, reflecting on the legal implications. This is followed by file work - preparing briefing notes for the clinic supervisor on compliance with QPILCH public interest criteria and the merits of the cases assessed. Students and supervisor then discuss the files.

Over the semester, students and staff prepare lunches over which public interest law issues are discussed, sometimes led by guests including members of the judiciary, barristers, representatives of member firms, Legal Aid Queensland and community legal services.

After lunch, students work in two groups on their projects.

Griffith University students

A student leads a seminar on a public interest issue. Before finishing for the day, there is discussion of the status of their files and progress with projects.

The students' work is assessed for credit towards their law degree. File work accounts for 60% of their mark, project work 25% and presenting and participating in the seminar earns the remaining 15%.

Previous projects

Semester 1 2013

  • Employment Law
  • Power of Attorney

Semester 1, 2012

  • Elder Law
  • Employment Law

Semester 1, 2011

  • Seminar on Social Justice Lawyering for school students
  • Privacy Issues
  • Clinical Legal Education
  • Review of Income Management in Logan

Semester 1, 2010

  • Misuse of social networking

Semester 1, 2009

  • Cross-jurisdictional analysis of judicial review processes.

Semester 1, 2008

  • Preparing a fact sheet on civil litigation time periods
  • Preparing a guide on how to calculate time
  • Preparing a fact sheet on requesting extensions of limitation periods

Semester 1, 2007

  • Completing notices of appeal as an exercise for the Self-Representation Project.

Semester 1, 2006

  • Coordination of Civil Law Services
  • Update publication on Coroner's jurisdiction

Semester 1, 2005

  • Land Law literature review
  • Comparative civil law funding schemes

Semester 1, 2004

  • Equal Justice for people with Mental Disability (for Queensland Advocacy Incorporated)
  • Comparative Immigration Policies (for RAILS)

Semester 2, 2003

  • Pro bono referral manual 2
  • Immigration law materials

Semester 1, 2003

  • Pro bono referral manual 1
  • Court & Tribunal fee waiver manual

Semester 2, 2002

  • Preparation of materials on the Queensland Coroner's Bill 2000
  • Drafting of a model 'no win, no fee' solicitor/client agreement.

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