Each year Public Defender Services of Lane County, Inc. supervises law students from the University of Oregon School of Law who participate in the school’s criminal defense clinic. Students who participate in this clinic are required to be court certified under the Oregon State Bar’s Rule 13 Law Student Appearance Program. In order to become certified under Rule 13, a law student must be enrolled in an American Bar Association approved law school and have completed the first two years of legal education. Additionally, the dean of the student’s law school must certify that the student has read and is familiar with the American Bar Association’s Model Rules of Professional Conduct, as well as the Oregon Rules of Professional Conduct.
Court certified students that participate in the criminal defense clinic get the opportunity to represent clients charged with misdemeanor crimes. While the law students do the large majority of the work for their clients, staff attorney’s at Public Defender Services of Lane County, Inc. supervise and advise these young legal representatives. In essence, clients that have a law student assigned to their case receive the benefit of two legal minds on their side.