2012 American Inns of Court Warren E. Burger Prize

The Warren E. Burger Prize is a writing competition designed to encourage outstanding scholarship that "promotes the ideals of excellence, civility, ethics and professionalism within the legal profession," the core mission of the American Inns of Court.

The submission deadline is June 1, 2012.

Rules for the competition are available on the American Inns of Court website at www.innsofcourt.org/burgerprize


Dalhousie Journal of Legal Studies Call for Papers

Dalhousie Journal of Legal Studies (DJLS) is currently accepting submissions from law students, and recent law graduates, for the 21st edition of the DJLS.  DJLS is a forum promoting reflection and debate on contemporary legal issues and serves as a unique vehicle for students from Canada and abroad to publish their work.

The best three papers selected for publication are eligible to receive up to $1000 in cash prizes.

The deadline for submissions to Volume 21 is Friday, February 3, 2012.  For more information, please click on the picture below.

Elliot A. Spoon Business Law Writing Competition

The Michigan State University College of Law Journal of Business & Securities Law is now accepting submissions for the Elliot A. Spoon Business Law Writing Competition.

For more information, click on the picture below.  The deadline is March 2, 2012.

The American College of Employee Benefits Counsel Eighth Annual Writing Competition


SUBJECT: Any topic in the field of employee benefits law.

OPEN TO: Any J.D. and graduate (L.L.M. or S.J.D) law students enrolled at any time between August 15, 2011 and August 15, 2012.

SUBMIT BY: June 1, 2012.

For more information, please click on the following link http://www.acebc.com/public-docs/writing-competition-rules-2012.pdf.


2012 Mike Eidson Scholarship Fund

The 2012 Mike Eidson Scholarship Fund was established by the AAJ Women Trial Lawyers Caucus in 2008, in honor of AAJ Past President Mike Eidson, whose vision and generosity inspired it. The Scholarship, traditionally given in the amount of $5,000, is awarded annually to a rising 3L (or rising 4L in a night program) female student who has demonstrated a commitment to a career as a plaintiffs’ lawyer or criminal defense lawyer, along with dedication to upholding and defending the principles of the Constitution, and to the concept of a fair trial, the adversary system, and a just result for the injured, the accused, and those whose rights are jeopardized.

The application deadline is May 31, 2012 and the Scholarship will be awarded at the AAJ Annual Convention, which will take place this year in July in Chicago.

For more information, please click HERE.

Howard C. Schwab Memorial Essay Contest

The American Bar Association Section of Family Law is pleased to present its Howard C. Schwab Memorial Essay Contest. This contest is held annually to encourage interest in the field of family law, and it is my hope that you will promote this great opportunity to students at your law school. Not only does the contest encourage innovative thought in family law, but it also provides an opportunity for recognition and publication in the scholarly journal Family Law Quarterly.

Applicants may submit an essay on any aspect of family law and entrants are encouraged to write on subjects of national interest. However, if the law in one state reflects a significant development or trend, that too could be an appropriate subject for an entry. With the vast scope of family law, the possibilities are endless.

Additional information about the Schwab Memorial Essay Contest can be found at www.ambar.org/schwab. The deadline for entries is May 4, 2012. (Students must apply for an entry number by April 27th.)

2012 Minority 1L Commercial Litigation Fellowship

NY Bar Foundation's Summer 2012 Minority 1L Commercial Litigation Fellowship - deadline is Jan. 31!

This is a customary note to remind all of the upcoming deadline for 1L students of color to apply for the New York Bar Foundation's Minority Fellowship, funded through the generosity of the Commercial & Federal Litigation Section of the NY State Bar Association. The fellowship provides a $6,000 stipend for the summer of 2012 and a valuable opportunity for a student interested in commercial litigation to participate in the work of a Commercial Division Justice in New York Supreme Court in Manhattan. A link to the application materials can be found HERE.

Applications must be postmarked by January 31. The fellowship will be awarded at a festive gala celebration on April 24th at Lincoln Center in conjunction with the presentation of the Hon. George Bundy Smith Pioneer Award to a distinguished member of the New York bench. The Dean of the winning student will be invited and acknowledged at the event.



The Winner will receive a cash award of $1,500.00

The Runner-up will receive a cash award of $1,000.00

The competition is open to students enrolled in a J.D. or LL.M. program (day or evening). The subject matter must be directed to one of the traditional subject areas of intellectual property, i.e., patents, trademarks, copyrights, trade secrets, unfair trade practices and antitrust.

For the 2012 Conner Writing Competition submission requirements, please click HERE.

Entries must be submitted by Friday, March 9, 2012.

The 2012 Conner Writing Competition winners will be honored at the Association's Annual Meeting and Awards Dinner on Tuesday, May 22, 2012 at the Princeton Club, NYC.

Columbian Lawyers Association Scholarships

Each year the Columbian Lawyers Association, First Judicial Department (”CLA”), confers four scholarship awards to needy law students of some Italian heritage presently attending law schools within the City of New York and the Counties of Nassau, Suffolk and Westchester. Consequently, the awards require that the applicant has been admitted and started his/her studies. The award consists of $2500.00 dollars paid for each year the student attends law school, for a maximum of three years.

Applications for awards must be submitted by March 15th of the shool year in which the award is granted. (e.g., For the 2012/2013 school year the applications must be submitted by March 15th, 2013.)

For more information, please click HERE.

International Association of Defense Counsel (IADC) Legal Writing Contest

The International Association of Defense Counsel (IADC) invites you to participate in its 2012 Legal Writing Contest.  The IADC is a professional association that has been serving an invitation-only membership of international corporate and insurance civil defense lawyers since 1920.

Deadline for articles is Friday, May 18, 2012.  For more information, click HERE.


Touro Law Students Volunteer in the Gulf Coast, an update

Touro Law Students travel to the Gulf Coast region to provide legal assistance to those in need. During the week of January 2, 2012 members of the Student Disaster Relief Network (SDRN) are providing legal assistance to residents in New Orleans, Louisiana, and Biloxi, Mississippi. Both gulf coast regions have been devastated by hurricanes in recent years, and most recently by the BP oil spill. As a result of the disasters that recently befell this region, tens of thousands of regional residents have incurred financial ruin, and have been thrust into the need for civil legal assistance.  Since December 2005, the SDRN has sent 9 groups of law students to the Gulf Coast region to provide legal assistance. Please read the following blogs from our students who are currently volunteering their time to assist others in need.

Today Matt and I are going to inspect the deed at the Parish Court House to determine whose name the property is in and specifically whether our client’s mother was on the deed.  So far we have discovered that the property taxes are in the name of our client’s deceased stepfather and it seems likely his death was never reported to the IRS.  This poses a problem because although our client may not be responsible for the tax debts if he wants to keep his home, he will have to pay the taxes.  The alternative is getting him tax exempt status which would be possible because he is a disabled veteran, but his name would have to be on the deed.

The veteran’s affairs issue has taken an interesting turn with our client.  He claims to have suffered his disability as a result of Agent Orange, a chemical used in Vietnam during the war. At this point in his claim we are trying to obtain an increase in benefits to include the new disability. He needs medical evidence that we are having trouble obtaining.  The creation of an informational pamphlet for all veterans to assist them through the benefits application process is well under way.
-Joannie Rodriguez and Matt Rubino

We took a tour around the ninth ward and the location where the levee broke.  We were brought to the Cypress Triangle, where we were able to see first-hand the ecological damage that has arose from the creation of the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet.  The tour that we took yesterday really helped me to better relate to my topic --  I was able to see firsthand how much destruction was caused to the wetlands and I want to learn more about the efforts to restore the wetlands.
-Nicole Giannakis

I really feel like Caitlin and I made a lot of progress yesterday on our topic.  After contacting a Criminal Law professor from Tulane Law School, we were able to begin researching the programs available and the sentencing and treatments in Louisiana's juvenile justice system. With regard to adult offenders,  I also stumbled upon a recent bill that was being pushed by Louisiana representative, Joseph Lopinto.  Since Louisiana has the highest incarceration rate in the entire country, it’s important that those who have committed non-violent crimes are not bred to stay in the system and become career criminals.  The bill would reduce the amount of time that non-violent, non-sex offenders would serve before becoming eligible for parole.  Since Louisiana has a "Three Strikes and You're Out" rule, the bill would allow a first time offender to be eligible for parole after serving 25% of his/her sentence instead of 33% and a second time offender would be eligible after serving 33% of the time instead of 50% of his/her time.  The bill also would allow an addition to inmate's "good time" credit which would permit the inmates to shave time off of their sentences for good behavior and by participating in rehabilitation programs and obeying prison rules.  Today I'm going to continue researching this bill and see its current status. 
-Sara Carissimi

Yesterday, Sara and I were able to accomplish a lot of research. We received a response from one of the Tulane professors we emailed and she gave Sara and I great groups and contacts that pertained to our topic. Sara was able to find multiple statistics about nonviolent adult and youth offenders. In addition, I was able to contact a couple of these groups and I am awaiting a response.

We were also able to go on a small tour of the Lower 9th Ward and saw the damage that was caused by Hurricane Katrina. Furthermore, we saw the differences in the levees -- there is a concrete and higher levee protecting the businesses while the rest of the Lower 9th Ward is protected only by a rusted piece of metal.

Today, Sara and I will make an outline of what should be included in both of our packets. In addition, we are hoping to be done with all of our research and we may be in the process of writing our packets either by the end of today or tomorrow morning.
- Caitlin Kavanagh

After putting together this packet I have learned so much about the Louisiana area.  I have gained a new appreciation for the damage of the wetlands.  I recognize that there are significant laws, both at the federal and state level, created to protect the environment and to take into consideration what the effects of a certain project will have on the environment.  Creating this packet will hopefully inform the community that there are restoration projects being implemented in the area.  In addition, I hope that this information will provide some hope to the community that their environment is not being forgotten.  
- Nicole Giannakis

Today we finished the brochure that we have been working on for the past several days.  The brochure contains step-by-step instructions on creating an account on the Crescent City job search website, as well as relevant contact information for HANO and Common Ground.  We have yet to hear back from HANO's General Counsel.  We also sent an e-mail following up with our request for the current 2002 Employment & Contracting plan, but have yet to receive a response.   Tomorrow we anticipate submitting our draft brochure for review and hope to finalize, print, and distribute the brochure to the local community centers. 
- Lauren Marinelli &  Mike Tylutki

We continued working on our project yesterday. We got a lot of work done in the morning and created a packet with information, statistics, and addresses of shelters. We continued working, and took a short break for lunch where we visited the French quarter in order to get a good perspective of it during the day time. Today we will edit what we have written and make sure we have included all the information we need.
- Angela and Zoe


The Get Prepped LSAT Prep Law School Scholarship - Deadline Jan 30th

The Get Prepped LSAT Prep law school scholarship is available to current law students. 

One or more grants of $1000 are awarded twice yearly. Students should request the current application packet using the online contact form at Get Prepped LSAT Prep. (http://www.getprepped.com ) Class rank, degree/major courses, LSAT test scores, short personal statement, and other review factors are used to determine awards. Go to www.GetPrepped.com and use the online 'contact us' form to request the most up-to-date application packet.

Application deadlines are January 30 and June 30 every year.

Good luck!


Touro Law Students Volunteer in the Gulf Coast

Touro Law Students travel to the Gulf Coast region to provide legal assistance to those in need. During the week of January 2, 2012 members of the Student Disaster Relief Network (SDRN) are providing legal assistance to residents in New Orleans, Louisiana, and Biloxi, Mississippi. Both gulf coast regions have been devastated by hurricanes in recent years, and most recently by the BP oil spill. As a result of the disasters that recently befell this region, tens of thousands of regional residents have incurred financial ruin, and have been thrust into the need for civil legal assistance.  Since December 2005, the SDRN has sent 9 groups of law students to the Gulf Coast region to provide legal assistance.  Please read the following blogs from a staff attorney from Touro Law's Public Advocacy Center and the students who are currently volunteering their time to assist others in need.

Excerpt of an Update from Advisor Jack Evans, Staff Attorney of the William Randolph Hearst Public Advocacy Center
I cannot begin to describe the number of questions that have been asked and the greatly expanded the scope of the students’ conceptualization of the issues they are working on. A tax issue has spawned inquiry into wills, trusts, and estates law, involving LA state laws and effects of intestate succession on property taxation. A question about hiring requiring contractors, who receive HUD section 3 funding, to subcontract out to local small businesses has led students to speak with the office of the receiver, who was appointed directly by President Obama, and has revealed proposals that would require at least 10% of subcontracted work be to low income residents have been vetoed, and while new ones are being drafted to submit for approval, the possible number of jobs are dwindling. That issue has also guided students to the process and application-requirement to be considered for being listed as a qualifying subcontractor. From BP claims to Alternative dispute resolution to intestate succession, I am enthralled by this group's sense of excitement, desire to learn, and, maybe most importantly, by their commitment to helping.

The Lower Mississippi Riverkeeper and the Atchafalaya Basinkeeper groups are scheduled to speak to the students about the current greatest dangers to the region's wetlands, the environmental devastation caused by dredging and dumping the material in the gulf and alternative environmentally-sound dredging techniques, as well as current restoration and preservation efforts. We may also be meeting once again with the National Wildlife Fund to discuss pending legal actions.

I have to say, to this point, I believe we are going to produce some of greatest benefits to the region's poor residents that I've seen in my 3 trips.

Excerpts from students

So far, our time in New Orleans has been a wonderful learning experience. It has opened our eyes to the horrid living conditions that some are faced with post Hurricane Katrina. The first day we met Malik, who graciously brought us into his home and for over two hours gave us a great deal of background history of what has been happening in New Orleans since Hurricane Katrina. He informed us about many hardships that the people of New Orleans face. He gave us a list of issues in which he wanted our assistance in researching and later assigned us to the topic of homelessness in New Orleans. While every state has poverty stricken areas, it seems as though New Orleans is like no other. We visited the15th Ward, specifically called the Christopher Homes Project, in which there used to be housing available for the less fortunate. The tenants who occupied this area were forced to vacate the area and offered only $40,000.00. Now, the area is completely desolate with abandoned homes in such poor condition that they are no longer suitable for living. We are currently researching the criteria for section 8 housing eligibility and locations. What has surprised us the most is finding out that there seem to be no answers to our questions. It is extremely hard to find any requirements needed to be eligible for section eight housing. Today we will be contacting HANO, Housing Authority of New Orleans, for some answers. We will be searching to see what programs are available and what the criteria would be to possibly start another.
- Angela Pugliese and Zoe Axelrod-Cates

This is the my first time in New Orleans and I had no idea such a dichotomy existed. When you think of New Orleans, there's an automatic vision of bright lights and crowds of people on Bourbon Street. Obviously everyone is aware of the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina but when you visualize New Orleans, very few people picture homes in the neighborhood of Algiers that are boarded up whose inhabitants were forced out and left to fend for themselves. The attitude in Louisiana toward criminals is incarcerate first, ask questions later. I'm really happy to be researching alternative sentencing for non-violent juvenile and adult offenders. The youth need rehabilitation, not the means to be continuously thrown back into the system and grow as career criminals. It's also important for us to shine a light on how much it costs to maintain a prisoner in jail and to avoid these costs by not incarcerating non-violent minor offenders and finding a more beneficial sentencing for both the offender and the community of New Orleans as a whole.
- Sara Carissimi

My experience in New Orleans has been very eye opening. The people here have a lot of hopes for creating a better community. They also see things in the bigger picture; they are not just concerned about themselves but also the world as a whole. My research for this trip is focused on the environmental aspect affecting New Orleans. I began my research with the MRGO, a man-made canal that caused much destruction and devastation during Hurricane Katrina. I am looking to find information on restoration efforts for the ecosystem and land. I want to help push these restorations and seek answers of the progress that has been made to inform the community.
- Nicole Giannakis

We are working on two very important issues while here in New Orleans. One focus is a specific tax issue and the resulting troubles with the IRS. The tax issue has morphed into a trust and estates and property issue in the sense that we are working to discover who actually owns the property after the death of our client’s stepfather. It has been a challenge to find the necessary information because of the lack of record keeping, but we are determined to succeed. We are also working the Veterans Affairs issue and the access to information in impoverished areas of New Orleans, specifically Algiers and the West Bank in Orleans Parish. There is so much red tape for veterans it is hard for them to navigate through it all and to know which forms to fill out for certain benefits, etc. There is a lot of research to be done for both projects but we think the outcome will be helpful both to our client and the community at large, especially if our client can stay in his home and we can give those in his community access to information.
- Matt Rubino and Joannie Rodriguez

Today was our first day working with the Mississippi Gulf Coast Planning Center. At the Planning Center, we met with one of the planners, Ben, and learned about what they are trying to accomplish, what they have already accomplished, and our goal as a group for this upcoming week. Ben told us that we would be surveying the surrounding communities in an effort to measure what the people think about their neighborhood and about the Gulf Coast region in general. Ben told us that he specifically added a section to the survey that asked people about their race instead of making it optional in order to gage the socioeconomic standing of the communities and to make the information more detailed and specific to determine exactly who and how they have been affected. Although we are just getting started, we are extremely excited for what's to come and to get out and meet the people of Mississippi.
-Lynn Markel

We arrived at the Mississippi Center for Justice on Monday afternoon and received a warm welcome from both the students and the staff. It is my deep sense of commitment to others in need which motivated my desire to travel to Mississippi to work with the Mississippi Center for Justice. We were separated to work on different projects and then given a brief description of what was expected. The group which I was placed in was assigned to canvassing and surveying particular areas of Mississippi (i.e. East Biloxi, Hancock, Pearlington and Gulfport) to obtain the perspective of the community members of their neighborhood to assist with the HUD sustainable Community Initiative.
-Jesseka Green

Today we began our assignment with Mr. Ben Requet at the Gulf Coast Regional Planning Commission. Our objective is to help plan projects intended to help guide the economic growth and development of the Mississippi Gulf Coast to help housing, employment, and transportation opportunities throughout the region. Mr. Requet gave us objectives and goals to reach over the course of the week, in addition to checkpoints to stop at in order to help us absorb as much of the Southern Mississippi experience as possible. Over the course of the week, our group will be canvassing different counties within the Gulf Coast region and obtaining information from locals in order to help the Planning Commission better determine what demographics need assistance, in order to further the continuing recovery in the after math of Hurricane Katrina.
-Todd Bass

 We were graciously welcomed by our host Malik Rahim, who is an active life-long resident of New Orleans. Malik spoke to our group about an array of problems that have impacted this city - both before and after the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina. Malik asked us to seek a legal resolution to a number of these problems. The issue that we are currently working on involves the inequalities that stem from the poor implementation of Section 3 of the 1968 Housing and Urban Development Act (“HUD”). This act requires federal funds to be distributed to housing authorities across the country in order to provide job training, employment, and contract opportunities for “low” or “very-low” income residents. The Housing Authority of New Orleans (“HANO”) is the recipient of these federal funds for the city of New Orleans. It is believed that there is rampant corruption in this agency and that the federal funds are not being properly appropriated amongst the eligible recipients. Community members are disgruntled by the fact that construction employment opportunities are being contracted to large companies and are not being assigned to local contractors. We have learned that HANO is administering the policies established by HUD through their own outdated and antiquated policies, which lack performance measurements and contract performance monitoring. Diane Johnson, the current single member board, is the most recent predecessor to the 8 appointed HUD agents to the position since 2002, and has been reportedly unresponsive to this issue. There have been a number of proposals for revised policies which allow for performance measurement, however, they are continually being denied. We have been in contact with Larry Barabino, who is the Section 3 Coordinator for HANO. He informed us that the drafting stages for a revised employment and contract policy have been under review for months but are being continually disapproved and redrafted. Larry will be providing us with a copy of the 2002 policy, which has not been made publically available. In addition to this issue, there is a notable discrepancy to the amount of people who are educated on the opportunities provided by HUD and are therefore not taking advantage of these benefits. We have decided to create a brochure, which outlines the application process so that members of low-income communities may become involved in this program. We hope to distribute these brochures to different community centers throughout the city in order to communicate this information.
- Lauren Marinelli


YourLawFriend Competition

YourLawFriend Competition

From the 6 February through till the 16 March YourLawFriend will be hosting an online competition for 'degree level law students'. The competition is open to students studying in the United States and the United Kingdom & Ireland. In order to compete in the competition, students must be enrolled on the JD, LLB, or BCL law program. Students who study on combined degrees are also eligible to compete.

Upon joining YourLawFriend, students will be grouped in a League Table with other students from within their Country and Year group. The competition requires students to accumulate points and attain a top ten position within their individual league table.

For more information, click HERE.