ENTREPRENEURS’ LEGAL ADVISING CLINICS

The Entrepreneurs’ Legal Advising Clinics assist entrepreneurs and small business owners while at the same time helping Santa Clara Law students get real-world hands-on counseling experience.

Entrepreneurs' Legal Advising ClinicsHere’s how it works: Volunteer attorneys are paired with one to three law student volunteers. Together, they see clients by appointment only, at brief (30-60-minute) advising sessions. Each attorney-student team sees up to five clients per clinic. Clients are asked to submit information about their business and legal issue in advance, enabling law students and attorneys to prepare, so counseling sessions can be as productive as possible.

The goal of the Entrepreneurs’ Legal Advising Clinics Program is three-fold: 1) Provide law students (including 1Ls) with opportunities for client interaction, exposure to real-world entrepreneurs and entrepreneurial law; 2) Provide meaningful connections between students and practicing attorney mentors; and, 3) Serve a population of entrepreneurs and small business owners that otherwise lack access to affordable competent legal counsel.

Entrepreneurs’ Legal Advising Clinics are held two or three evenings a month during the school year. Business owners already in business and entrepreneurs who are thinking about starting a business, alike, are invited to talk to an experienced business attorney about business legal issues or concerns they have. Law student volunteers conduct client communications, interviews, and legal research, and may participate in the delivery of legal advice under the supervision of licensed pro bono attorneys.

The ELAC offers volunteer opportunities for all Santa Clara Law students. Through this volunteer opportunity students gain valuable client facing experience, as well as have an opportunity to build a relationship with the many attorney mentors in the program. This is an experiential learning opportunity, which will help you gain real-world experience.

Key objectives:

  • Help provide pro bono legal consulting services to entrepreneurs and small business owners, targeting underserved communities
  • Learn to conduct informational intake interviews, legal research, and delivering legal opinions from skilled business attorneys
  • Gain experience through interacting with real clients seeking legal advice on real issues facing startups and small businesses

ELAC attorneysThe success of this program depends on the dedication of our attorney volunteers who assist entrepreneurs and small business owners, while at the same time helping Santa Clara Law students get real-world hands-on experience counseling clients. The Entrepreneurs’ Legal Advising Clinic provides volunteer attorneys with meaningful pro bono experience advising clients and mentoring law students in matters involving business law. The total time commitment is about 14 hours over the course of the semester.

Here’s how it works: Volunteer attorneys are paired with up to three law student volunteers. Together, they see clients by appointment only, at brief (30-60-minute advising sessions). Each attorney-student team may see up to five clients per clinic (clinics are typically held on weeknights or Saturday mornings). Clients are asked to submit information in advance, enabling law students and attorneys to prepare, so counseling sessions can be as productive as possible.

Attorney mentor volunteers are invited to be listed among other valued ELC attorney mentors on a webpage that includes their photo and bio, and whether or not they are available for additional follow-on legal advising on a pro bono or low bono (substantially below market rate) basis outside of the ELAC setting.

To join our list of volunteers, click below.

Many entrepreneurs and small business owners say they could have saved considerable time, expense, and headache if only they had consulted an attorney earlier rather than later, especially on legal issues such as the following:

Entrepreneurs' Legal Advising Clinics

  • Founders’ Agreements
  • Entity Choice (Sole Proprietorship, LLC, Corporation, etc.)
  • Licensing and Other Regulations
  • Financing
  • Employment Matters
  • Independent Contractor versus Employee Classification
  • Equity Compensation
  • Restricted Stock & Shareholders’ Agreements
  • Taxation
  • Non-Disclosure Agreements
  • Intellectual Property Protection (Trademarks, Copyrights, Patents, etc.)
  • Privacy Policies
  • Website Terms of Use
  • Commercial Lease Agreements
  • Customer and Vendor Contracts
  • Licensing Agreements

At the Entrepreneurs’ Legal Advising Clinics, business owners can talk to an experienced business attorney about any of these issues, and more. To request an appointment, click here.

ELAC community partnersELAC depends on its many community partners for hosting clinics at their sites, helping to identify specific community needs, funding the clinics, and assistance with community outreach. Community partners are invited to be listed among other valued contributors to ELC on its webpage, including the display of their logos, a description of the services they offer, and a link to their own websites. To become a Community Partner, click here.

To be informed of the dates and locations of Entrepreneurs’ Legal Advising Clinics in future, or to receive periodic reports on the services it provides and related information, join our mailing list below;