Stetson helps to create National Law School Veterans Clinic Consortium
Stetson University College of Law has joined a consortium of veterans clinics at law schools across the country working together to improve legal representation for military veterans.
The National Law School Veterans Clinic Consortium formed two years ago as an informal resource for the country’s law school veterans programs. Last month, the resource with approximately 30 law school members transitioned into an official nonprofit organization.
Stetson joins the College of William and Mary School of Law and the John Marshall Law School in spearheading the effort to grow the new consortium, which helps law schools launch new clinics by offering guidance and technical assistance.
The number of veterans clinics at law schools has increased from seven in 2008 to more than 50 today, with more on the way.
Some clinics assist veterans in obtaining VA benefits, while others offer civil legal aid to veterans or represent them in veterans treatment courts.
Professor Stacey-Rae Simcox, who directs the Veterans Advocacy Clinic at Stetson University, is a consortium board member.
“The consortium is a hub of knowledge where clinics can learn from each other what works best in helping veterans navigating a difficult claims process,” said Professor Simcox. “The consortium also helps law clinics work together to train future lawyers who may either practice in veterans advocacy or volunteer pro bono time to the effort.”
The consortium also acts as a national referral network to help law schools assist veterans outside their geographic areas or with legal issues outside their scope.
Two years ago, Stetson law school and the University of South Florida joined forces to help Florida veterans negotiate an often complex system so that they may secure disability benefits to which they are entitled.
This partnership is believed to be the first of its kind pairing students and faculty from a law school and an academic health center to help serve veterans.
To learn more about the Veterans Advocacy Clinic and Veterans Law Institute at Stetson University, visit www.stetson.edu/law/veterans.
Post date: Nov. 15, 2016