Southern District Taps Law Students For Role in Court Mediation Program

New York Law Journal
September 16, 2011

The Southern District recently called upon three New York law schools for a new program that will enlist law students (under supervision of their professors) to represent plaintiffs in court-referred mediations. The law students will “meet with clients to ascertain their goals, prepare mediation statements and conduct negotiations before volunteer mediators. If a resolution is reached, the students will also help draft the settlement agreement. However, students will not represent plaintiffs in litigation if the mediation is unsuccessful.”

Chief Judge Loretta Preska called the new partnership “the biggest win-win-win I can think of” given its huge benefit to clients in need of representation. Furthermore, it provides students with the real world experience in client advocacy and managing client expectations. Moreover, this program will help the Southern District resolve discrimination matters outside of the courtroom and cope with the expected upsurge in mediations.

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