Hofstra University Maurice A. Deane School of Law
Law School Pro Bono Programs
Luciana M. DeCarlo, Esq.
Hofstra University School of Law
Director of Externships and Pro Bono Programs
P: (516) 463-0386
Formal Voluntary Pro Bono Program Characterized by Administrative Support for Student Group Projects.
Description of Programs
Students may participate in one of the four student-run pro bono projects at the law school. The Courtroom Advocates Project (CAP) advocates for domestic violence victims seeking orders of protection. The Unemployment Action Center (UAC) represents claimants seeking unemployment insurance benefits in administrative hearings. The Veterans Legal Assistance Project (VLAP) provides veterans with access to free legal services by holding bi-annual events aimed at providing basic legal guidance between client and attorney. The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program (VITA) receives training from the Internal Revenue Service to help prepare tax returns for low-income individuals and the students hold a number of clinics leading up to the income tax filing deadline to assist in preparing and filing tax returns.
Location of Programs
With the clinical/externship program.
The Pro Bono Program is within the Office of Experiential Programs which includes the Externship programs as well. The Director of Externships and Pro Bono Programs is responsible for both programs.
The program is funded through the general law school budget.
Faculty and Administrative Pro Bono
The Law School does not have a formal pro bono policy for faculty, but many faculty participate in programs in various contexts.
Hofstra Law's Public Service Awards Program honors graduating students who have completed public service hours during their three years at Hofstra Law. To receive recognition a student must perform public service work under the supervision of a licensed attorney and/or a faculty member with any of the following: nonprofit organizations that provide legal representation to individuals or groups who are underserved; underrepresented or of limited means, including Hofstra Law clinical programs; (2) municipal, state, or federal government agencies, legislative bodies, or court systems; (3) attorneys providing legal services free of charge or at a significantly reduced costs; and (4) Hofstra Law student groups that advocate on behalf of clients and for groups that provide legal education. Students' work is recognized with awards at the following levels: Bronze Level - 250+, Silver Level - 500+, Gold Level 750+
Law School Public Interest Programs
Margaret "Peggy" Garte, Esq.
Director of Public Service Career Planning
P: (516) 463-5385
Public Interest Centers
Hofstra Law’s Office of Career Services employs a Director of Public Service Career Planning, an attorney-counselor dedicated entirely to supporting students seeking internships, externships and post-graduate positions in government, the judiciary, non-profit, and all other public service entities, as well as facilitates public interest programming including panels, speakers, mock interview programs, and workshops. The Office of Career Services partners with the Public Justice Foundation, a student organization, which provides funding for public interest summer internships.
Loan Repayment Assistance Programs (LRAP)
r Loan Repayment Assistance Programs (LRAP).
Loan Repayment Assistance Program (LRAP) Upon graduation, students who enter qualified areas of public interest employment may be eligible to apply for the Hofstra Law Loan Repayment Assistance Program. This program, if approved, will forgive portions of outstanding Hofstra Law Loan debt. Criteria: a. Must have official state Bar Membership and be employed as an attorney by a government agency (local, state or federal) or by a nonprofit employer satisfying Internal Revenue Code §501(c)(3) or (4) for at least six months prior to application. 78 b. Must be employed full time in such a job during the entire calendar year. As in similar programs, judicial clerkships will not be included in this program. c. Current income cannot exceed $65,000. The graduate’s income is calculated on the greater of (a) his or her income or (b) half the joint income of the graduate and his or her spouse. On calculating income, we will take a deduction of $3,500 per child for dependent care. Hofstra Law reassesses the program guidelines in accordance with the available resources each year. If a student is already in LRAP, the student will be required to reapply each year by resubmitting an application with the required forms to renew eligibility. If, while in the program, the student makes any changes that no longer fit the criteria of the program, he or she must contact the Financial Aid Office.