Health Justice Clinic   


Learn about Seton Hall Law Clinics

 

Center for Social Justice (CSJ)
[email protected] | 973-642-8700 or 973-761-9000 ext. 8700
833 McCarter Highway, Newark, NJ 07102

 

Number Name Credit Type Offering

CLIN7194

Health Justice Clinic

The Health Justice Clinic will provide students with the opportunity to develop both litigation practice skills and transactional skills, along with an intensive understanding of various aspects of health law. Students may serve as counsel providing full representation to clients in housing cases including landlord-tenant actions and evictions, as well as housing discrimination, accessibility, and housing conditions cases. Students may provide representation from original interview through final judgment. Students may also serve as advisors to clients seeking to put in place advance directives such as health care proxies or instruction directives, documents which are designed to ensure that the client’s wishes are carried out. In addition, students may provide advice, brief service, and counsel to individuals without providing full representation.

Students are supervised in their activities by clinic faculty who are attorneys licensed to practice in New Jersey, but the students will have primary responsibility for the conduct of the case. Students draft all pleadings and make court appearances on behalf of their clients. The clinic offers training in techniques of advocacy and in legal ethics as well as providing an important service to those who would otherwise be unable to afford legal representation. Clinics are open to all students who have completed 2/3 of the credits required for graduation.

The course is letter-graded for both the clinical and class components.



Minimum Cumulative 2.60 GPA (2.33-2.60 with a waiver). Prerequisites: Evidence, Professional Responsibility, Persuasion and Advocacy.

NOTE: Students cannot participate in an externship in the same semester in which they are enrolled in a clinic.

2

Clinic

in-class

CLIN7195

Health Justice Clinic

The Health Justice Clinic will provide students with the opportunity to develop both litigation practice skills and transactional skills, along with an intensive understanding of various aspects of health law. Students may serve as counsel providing full representation to clients in housing cases including landlord-tenant actions and evictions, as well as housing discrimination, accessibility, and housing conditions cases. Students may provide representation from original interview through final judgment. Students may also serve as advisors to clients seeking to put in place advance directives such as health care proxies or instruction directives, documents which are designed to ensure that the client’s wishes are carried out. In addition, students may provide advice, brief service, and counsel to individuals without providing full representation.

Students are supervised in their activities by clinic faculty who are attorneys licensed to practice in New Jersey, but the students will have primary responsibility for the conduct of the case. Students draft all pleadings and make court appearances on behalf of their clients. The clinic offers training in techniques of advocacy and in legal ethics as well as providing an important service to those who would otherwise be unable to afford legal representation. Clinics are open to all students who have completed 2/3 of the credits required for graduation.

The course is letter-graded for both the clinical and class components.



Minimum Cumulative 2.60 GPA (2.33-2.60 with a waiver). Prerequisites: Evidence, Professional Responsibility, Persuasion and Advocacy.

NOTE: Students cannot participate in an externship in the same semester in which they are enrolled in a clinic.

1

Seminar

in-class


Professor: Rachel Gerson, Assistant Clinical Professor

Offered: Fall and Spring semesters

Credits: 3

INTRODUCTION

The Health Justice Clinic (HJC) provides free legal services to individuals needing representation in a variety of civil legal matters, addressing the social determinants of health with a focus on maintaining safe and affordable housing.

Through direct legal services, community education, and systemic advocacy, students will address the civil legal needs that can profoundly affect health. Social and environmental factors, such as access to affordable and safe housing, access to food and health care, and a stable source of income all have an impact on health. The HJC aims to improve overall health outcomes for individual clients, which may also save health care costs system-wide.

Students represent tenants who live in a variety of housing settings, including private apartments and houses, publicly funded affordable housing, and supportive housing programs for people with disabilities. Students conduct client intake, review court files and other records, prepare witnesses for trials, and represent tenants in case conferences and trials before the Special Civil Part of the Superior Court. Students may also write briefs in support of their clients’ cases.

Students also work with tenants to address civil legal issues related to housing insecurity, including loss of disability benefits or other income, access to medical treatment, executing advance directives, and negotiating medical debt. For example, students may represent clients who need to appeal a denial of a Social Security Disability or Supplemental Security Insurance application. Students may also represent clients to appeal a health insurance plan’s denial of medically necessary treatment that could prevent the need for institutional placement and keep them in their homes. Students may help draft documents for clients who want to appoint an agent under a power of attorney to help navigate their legal, financial, or health care needs. Students may also advocate with health care providers and charities to reduce or eliminate clients’ medical debt.

Students in the Health Justice Clinic frequently produce written work such as updates on issues at the nexus of health and housing and community education materials.

Students are supervised in their activities by clinic faculty who are attorneys licensed to practice in New Jersey, but the students will have primary responsibility for the conduct of their cases. Students draft all pleadings and appear on behalf of their clients. The clinic offers training in techniques of advocacy and in legal ethics as well as providing an important service to those who would otherwise be unable to afford legal representation. The clinic is open to both day and weekend students who have completed at least two-thirds of the credits required to graduate.

Clinical Law Practice

Students work closely under the supervision of clinical faculty in all phases of case work from initial client interview through trial, and appeal where warranted. Students will interview and counsel clients, work with interpreters, interview witnesses, conduct factual investigations, engage in legal research and analysis, draft moving papers and legal documents, argue motions, conduct negotiations, prepare clients and witnesses for trial, and conduct trials. Students may conduct and defend depositions and participate in the appeal of cases.

Students are required to spend 195 hours of work on their cases during the fall and spring semesters.

Travel Note

Students may be asked to travel outside of Newark in order to meet with clients.

The Seminar

The classroom component will include lectures and simulations reviewing the substantive law in the relevant practice areas, basic practice and procedure, theories of social justice, ethical issues, and advocacy skills.

Note: You may be required to attend office hours, client meetings, or court hearings during the day. If you are employed, you must have flexibility to participate in the clinic during at least some regular business hours.