Our Service Model
The scope of our services
The Katharine and George Alexander Community Law Center offers free legal services in the areas of:
Low-income taxpayer matters
The services may range from brief procedures (one-time consultations, assistance filling out legal documents, referral to other services or attorneys, etc) to full representation in civil or immigration court, before the Labor Commissioner or Tax Court, among other venues. All services are free of charge and completely confidential.
Since many of the Community Law Center's clients speak languages other than English, the Law Center does provide interpreters for speakers of Spanish, French and Portuguese in-house. When making their appointments for a clinical interview, clients may express their need for other languages, and the Law Center will do its best to provide the respective interpreters or recommend that the clients bring their own.
The delivery of services through our legal clinics
The Alexander Community Law Center is the civil clinical component of Santa Clara University School of Law. As such, it offers a number of courses in the aforementioned legal areas. These courses have a substantive component and a practical component, both of which are applied through the direct interaction that students have with their clients clients every school semester. This model achieves two main goals:
1. It allows law students to receive excellent training in the handling of cases involving real clients, which in turns allows them to become better attorneys, and
2. it provides low-income clients with high-quality legal representation that they would not be able to afford otherwise.
By leveraging and utilizing the skills of Santa Clara law students, the Alexander Community Law Center creates a multiplying effect which allows it to see more clients than a regular legal services program that is solely staffed by attorneys. At the same time, this experience encourages legal professionals to consider a career serving the public interest. Many of its graduates remain committed to providing pro bono services throughout their legal career.
Community workshops: a tool to prevent abuse and inform the community about basic rights
In the addition to its legal clinics, the KGACLC offers a number of workshops in the subjects of:
These workshops are given throughout the San Jose community (and beyond) in day-worker centers, ESL (English as a Second Language) classes, community centers and other venues as a way to disseminate basic legal information to the under-represented members of our community.