Bankruptcy Clinic added as eighth clinic at Syracuse University College of Law
The new Bankruptcy Clinic at Syracuse University College of Law is an extension of the award-winning Pro Bono Bankruptcy Program started in 2009. Each clinic student will be assigned at least one bankruptcy client, and will supervise a team of pro bono student volunteers. The teams will evaluate the client’s financial situation, prepare the client’s bankruptcy petition and schedules, and appear at the official meeting of creditors on the client’s behalf, all under College of Law Professor Gregory Germain’s supervision. Germain will teach the course component of the clinic, covering consumer bankruptcy laws and procedures, and will monitor the status of the cases.
“The class component will give me not only an opportunity to provide the students with better and more regular training targeted to the issues in their cases, but will enable me to better monitor the status of the cases to assure that the work is being completed on a timely basis,” Germain says. “The program will continue to give first-year students the opportunity to help with real cases, and will give the upper-division clinic students the opportunity to manage a team and represent a real client.”
Germain added that the program also provides a terrific community service. There is a great need for pro bono bankruptcy assistance in our community, and there are not enough trained volunteers to fill that need. The clinic and pro bono program will help to fill the gap, while providing valuable hands-on training to the clinic students and pro bono volunteers.
Clients are referred to the clinic from Legal Aid of Mid New York, which qualifies the clients for pro bono services and preliminarily determines whether the clients are in need of bankruptcy assistance. Members of the community seeking pro bono bankruptcy assistance should contact Legal Aid at (877) 777-6152.