Summer Associate Program: Pro Bono General Project

The Volunteer Legal Services Project is a pro bono project that partners with volunteer attorneys to expand access to justice for low-income residents in central northeast Ohio. The summer associate on this project will assist general VLSP activities.


Student Goals:

Case Interviewing and Development: Summer associate will interview clients in all areas of civil law. Client legal problems include family law, bankruptcy/consumer law, probate, housing, and more. Summer associate will work with an attorney to develop client case files (gather appropriate documents, identify appropriate parties, etc.), develop case profiles, and prepare basic pleadings (as appropriate) in each client’s case. Summer associate will communicate with private attorneys and assist them with case work, as requested.

Clinics: Summer associate will work with clients to prepare for legal clinics and attend legal clinics. Clinics are primarily in the areas of divorce, custody, visitation, collections/consumer, estate planning, and general counsel/advice. Summer associate will prepare draft wills, powers of attorney, living wills, and transfer on death affidavits for the estate planning clinics. Summer associate will assist client with the preparation of a variety of family law pleadings. Summer associate will assist clients in the preparation of letters to creditors.

Pro Bono/Professional Development: Summer associate will assist in recruitment, on-going communication and case support for pro bono attorneys, and training of pro bono attorneys. Summer associate will attend bar association meetings with the VLSP Managing Attorney.


Specific Tasks:

  • Interviewing clients
  • Public records research
  • Legal research
  • Drafting letters
  • Meeting with clients
  • Document review
  • Case management
  • Speak with private attorneys
  • Attend bar association meetings and/or events
  • Draft legal pleadings and other legal documents, memos, and possibly bankruptcy petition preparation
  • Attendance at hearings  


Skills, Experience, & Interests:

  • Self-motivated and able to work on their own and in a team
  • Must be able to follow directions
  • Responsible and reliable, as they will be meeting with clients
  • Professional, as they will be meeting with clients and private attorneys
  • No prior bankruptcy, evidence, litigation or research and writing experience needed
  • Interest or background in poverty law and/or bankruptcy law helpful, but not required