From April 24–25, Kyrgyzstan’s Legal Clinics Association (LCA) conducted the third annual client counseling competition among law school-based legal clinics. Eight teams of two from law schools in Bishkek, Osh and Jalal-Abad participated in the competition.
While the ABA Rule of Law Initiative (ABA ROLI) organized the first two annual competitions, the LCA took the lead in organizing this year’s competition. In addition to coordinating legal clinic activities across the country, the LCA also serves as a resource for clinic directors and students, as well as the public.
During the competition, students demonstrated their understanding of codes and legal procedures, and their skills to interview clients and to deliver legal advice. Professional actors played the roles of clients, while practicing lawyers evaluated the students’ performances.
The team from the International University of Kyrgyzstan won the competition and received a trophy with a gift certificate to buy rare legal books, and the teams from the Kyrgyz National University and the Jalal-Abad Legal Institute finished second and third, respectively.
Participants said that the practical skills they gain through their training at the legal clinics and through the competition complement their lecture-based theoretical legal education.
The annual client counseling competition is part of ABA ROLI’s U.S. Agency for International Development-supported program to support the country’s legal defense community.
To learn more about our work in Kyrgyzstan, contact the ABA Rule of Law Initiative at [email protected].