Do you or does your organisation or institution work in the public interest? Are you, in other words, a public interest lawyers or part of a grassroots movement, an NGO or a governmental institution? Could you or your organisation use extra expertise in solving a legal issue? Are you in need of legal research to support your cause? Would you like assistance from a dedicated team in your strategic litigation strategy? If so, then a collaboration with one of our clinics might be the perfect opportunity for you!
In our five clinics we work with experts from the Amsterdam Law School. Supervision of cases is carried out by dedicated (assistant-) professors and clinical lecturers, and sometimes PhD candidates and postdoctoral fellows who have particular knowledge of a certain legal field. Our supervisors have had experience in the legal practice, which helps them understand the needs of our clients even better.
Students who participate in our clinics are Master students from a wide variety of legal backgrounds. Clinic students are selected based on their high level of motivation, prior academic achievement, expressed commitment to the project and on the possibility to match legal expertise with the cases the clinics will be working on that semester.
We accept a wide variety of cases, as long as we consider that the request serves the public interest. Topics could range from human rights, to international criminal / humanitarian law, to environmental justice and animal welfare, and from anti-tobacco campaigns, to the housing market and corporate social responsibility. Cases may relate to legal proceedings, but can also entail legal research with the aim of enhancing a lobbying strategy, or exploring legal avenues and policies.
The Amsterdam Law Clinics work on a pro bono basis for a wide range of clients – from assisting lawyers or organizations with complex legal queries requiring specific expertise or knowledge of multiple areas of law, to clients who do not have the means to fund regular legal assistance. However, we are not a legal aid bureau that assists individual clients for which we suggest contacting our Free Legal Advice Centre in the Law Hub. We generally work on cases that involve larger legal and societal problems and usually affect more than one person’s interest.
Most cases are run per semester (roughly from early September until the end of January and from early February until the end of June). We aim to make a final selection of our cases in May and November before each semester starts and the students are selected, but accept requests on a rolling basis.
There is no specific format in which your request must be submitted. Rather, we like to talk with our clients about the needs and possibilities first, and fine-tune what the clinics can offer. We then put down the terms of our collaboration in a Terms of Reference.
All our cases are dealt with on the basis of strict confidentiality, unless otherwise agreed. Students are asked to sign a confidentiality agreement before the start of the semester. Any follow-up that follows from our research and clinical work, such as publications or the organisation of a symposium, will only be taken up after approval from both parties and is usually carried out in collaboration.
Submit your request or contact us with any questions you may have by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. We are happy to discuss the possibilities with you.