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Children and Families Law Clinic

The Children and Families Law Clinic focuses on the legal needs of economically disadvantaged individuals. Family law constitutes one of the primary components of civil practice, particularly for practitioners in small firms. Key areas include custody and divorce, paternity, dependency, representation of teenagers, and economic issues. Students will serve as interns in the clinic while being introduced to independent case management skills focused on client interviewing, legal analysis, drafting legal documents, motion practice, courtroom presentation, and professionalism. The Clinic simultaneously educates students on the procedural, practical and ethical elements that arise as a result of these legal issues in live client matters.


Children and Families Law Clinic Success

The success of the NSU Children and Families Law Clinic is a collaborative effort resulting in a truly meaningful reunification of parent and child in an international abduction case.

Several years ago, six 3L students — under the direction of Professor Brion Blackwelder and Professor Timothy Arcaro, successfully represented a father seeking the return of his ten-year-old daughter in an international child abduction case in Broward County, Florida. The Clinic accepted this case as a pro bono referral from the U.S. State Department Office of Children’s Legal Issues, which is the designated central authority for purposes of The Hague Convention on Civil family-web.jpgAspects of International Child Abduction.

The client, a citizen of the Dominican Republic, sent his child to the United States during the summer of 2017 for a three-month visit, but the child was never returned to him, in violation of a Dominican court order and international law. The client subsequently moved to Spain. The team was able to obtain an order granting a return petition, which reunified the minor child with her father. 

The Circuit Court Judge, assigned to the case, was impressed by the level of sophistication NSU Law students demonstrated with this complex matter and the professionalism demonstrated in the courtroom.
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