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Veterans Advocates


Contact Brandi Palmer
Manager of Media Relations
727-562-7381
palmer@law.stetson.edu

Megan O'Neill and Chase Hattaway, winners of the inaugural Veterans Law Appellate Advocacy Competition.

Megan O'Neill and Chase Hattaway, winners of the inaugural Veterans Law Appellate Advocacy Competition. Click for high-resolution image.

On Oct. 15, Stetson University College of Law students won the inaugural Veterans Law Appellate Advocacy Competition in Washington, D.C., competing against teams from several  prestigious law schools around the country. Student advocates argued before the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims.

The Stetson Law team of Chase Hattaway and Megan O’Neill won the Best Respondent’s Brief Award in addition to the competition. O’Neill was also named Best Overall Oralist, the highest individual award given in the competition, which was held in conjunction with the 20th anniversary of the court.

“Chase and Megan represented Stetson with poise and professionalism and they are coming home champions,” said Moot Court Advisor Professor Stephanie Vaughan.

 

 

 

Chase Hattaway and Megan O'Neill.

Chase Hattaway and Megan O'Neill. Click for high-resolution image.

Professor Michael Allen, a veterans law expert who recently testified before the U.S. Senate Committee on Veterans Affairs, coached the team to victory. The competition was sponsored by the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims and the CAVC Bar Association.

“Moot court competitions in general are wonderful opportunities for students to learn the skills needed to be appellate advocates,” said Professor Allen.  “This competition in particular is important for students to see how they can use their talents to assist the men and women who fought for this country.”

The U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims was created on Nov. 18, 1988, after nearly three decades of debate. For the sixth time in our nation’s history, Congress established a court of national jurisdiction without geographical limits. Few federal courts have been created since the ratification of the Constitution.

Stetson Law’s Center for Excellence in Advocacy began a veterans advocacy clinic in August at its Tampa Law Center to help Florida veterans understand their legal rights. To set up an appointment with the clinic, interested veterans should call Stetson at 727-562-7317.

To learn more about Stetson’s nationally top-ranked advocacy program, please visit http://www.law.stetson.edu/advocacy.