Domestic Violence and Civil Protection Order Clinic
Statement of Purpose
In keeping with the Center’s Mission, the Clinic’s purpose is two-fold: to train students to practice law in the civil setting and provide holistic legal services to survivors of domestic violence. Clinic staff assists students in learning every aspect of civil practice. From initial interview through all stages of advocacy, we offer a supportive environment for student entry into the practice of law. In addition, clinic students consult extensively with clients on the benefits and risks of taking legal action, discuss safety concerns, make referrals to other providers, as needed, and represent clients through the civil protection order process.
Since 2005, students in the Domestic Violence and Civil Protection Order Clinic have represented over 1,400 victims of domestic violence, stalking, sexual assault and human trafficking in civil protection order hearings. The Clinic has advocated on behalf of domestic violence in the human rights arena. During 2010/2011 the Clinic, under the direction of Professor Mickles, advocated for the Cincinnati City Council to pass a resolution declaring freedom from domestic violence as a fundamental human right. This was the first such resolution passed in the country.
The Clinic provides students training on practicing law and the art of trial advocacy in the context of domestic violence. Taken in the third year, the semester-long program includes extensive training and gives students hands-on experience counseling and representing clients from the community. Students practice in the Hamilton County Domestic Relations Court and the Court of Common Pleas.
The Clinic provides a superb opportunity for students to learn the skills necessary for effective client representation. After completing a forty-hour training, students begin the full representation of clients. Students develop skills in interviewing, investigation, negotiation, drafting pleadings and correspondence as well as direct and cross-examination.
Students learn to work collaboratively both with clinic colleagues and with off-campus and on- campus collaborators including the Women’s Center that serves members of the UC community.
Weekly classes and individual supervision held throughout the semester continue the exploration of domestic violence, skills building, as well as case rounds, case preparation and self-care.
There are a variety of opportunities available to students wishing to participate in the Domestic Violence and Civil Protection Order Clinic.