Improving Access to Justice Through Compulsory Student Work at University Law Clinics
In this paper an analysis is offered of compulsory so-called "live client" clinical legal education as part of the LLB as a means of improving access to justice for the indigent. This study first explores the factors which motivate which the establishment of a year’s compulsory community service during the LLB studies, and making clinical legal education compulsory. The motivation includes inducing law students and graduates to aid in the achievement of access to justice. The research then focuses on what the value of community service is in higher education generally.
In the South African civil justice system many ordinary people cannot afford to use the courts because of the expense involved, or because they are ignorant of their rights. This is particularly the case in civil as opposed to criminal matters, as legal aid is more frequently focused on criminal than on civil matters in this country. This paper will consider the role which senior law students may play in rendering pro bono work as part of clinical legal education in their LLB studies. In this regard particular focus will be made on the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN), the only university offering law studies in greater Durban.
As for pro bono work by students during their LLB, consideration could be given to making clinical legal education a compulsory part of such students' curricula. Possible compulsory community service for law graduates (ie post-LLB) as envisaged in the proposed Legal Practice Bill falls beyond the ambit of this paper.
Barnhizer 1979 J Leg Ed
Barnhizer DR "The clinical method of instruction: its theory and implementation" 1979 J Leg Ed 67-148
Bloch and Prasad 2006 Clin L Rev
Bloch FS and Prasad MRK "Institutionalizing a social justice mission for clinical legal education: cross-national currents from India and the United States" 2006 Clin L Rev 165-212
Bodenstein "Role of University-Based Law Clinics"
Bodenstein J "The Role of University-Based Law Clinics in the Provision of Legal Aid in South Africa" (Unpublished paper delivered at the ILAG Conference Antwerp 8 June 2007)
Brickhill 2005 SAJHR
Brickhill J "The right to a fair civil trial: the duties of lawyers and law students to act pro bono" 2005 SAJHR 293-322
De Klerk 2005 SALJ
De Klerk W "University Law Clinics in South Africa" 2005 SALJ 929-950
Gilbert "Report on the Status of University Law Clinics"
Gilbert MS "Report on the Status of University Law Clinics in South Africa" (Unpublished report, on file with The Ford Foundation, South Africa, Namibia Office 2003)
Greenbaum 2012 De Jure
Greenbaum L"Experiencing the South African undergraduate law curriculum" 2012 De Jure 104-124
Holness 2013 PER
Holness D "Recent Developments in the Provision of Pro Bono Legal Services by Attorneys in South Africa" 2013 16(1) PER 129-164
Iya 2003 Third World Legal Studies
Iya PF "From Lecture Room to Practice: Addressing the Challenges of Reconstructing and Regulating Legal Education and Legal Practice in the New South Africa" 2003 Third World Legal Studies 141-160
Kuppan "Legal Aid"
Kuppan G "Legal Aid" in Olivier MP et al (eds) The Extension of Social Security Protection in South Africa: A Legal Query (Siber Ink Cape Town 2001) 1 - 30
Maisel 2006 Fordham Int'l LJ
Maisel P "Expanding and Sustaining Clinical Legal Education in Developing Countries: What We Can Learn From South Africa" 2006 Fordham Int'l LJ 374-420
McCutcheon "University Legal Aid Clinics"
McCutcheon A "University Legal Aid Clinics: A Growing International Presence with Manifold Benefits" in McClymont S and Golub M (eds) Many Roads to Justice: The Law-related Work of the Foundation Grantees Around the World (Ford Foundation New York 2000) 267-282
McDiarmid 1990 NY L Sch L Rev
McDiarmid MA "What's Going on Down There in the Basement: In-House Clinics Expand Their Beachhead" 1990 NY L Sch L Rev 239-291
McQuoid-Mason 1992 SAJHR
McQuoid-Mason D "Rudman and the Right to Counsel: Is it Feasible to Implement Khanyile?" 1992 SAJHR 96-113
McQuoid-Mason 1999 Windsor YB Access Just
McQuoid-Mason D "Access to Justice in South Africa" 1999 Windsor YB Access Just 1-16
McQuoid-Mason "Teaching Social Justice"
McQuoid-Mason D "Teaching Social Justice to Law Students through Community Service- The South African Experience" in Iya P, Rembe NS and Baloro J (eds) Transforming South African Universities: Capacity Building for Historically Black Universities: Challenges and Strategies for the Next Millennium (Africa Institute of South Africa Pretoria 2000) 1-10
Perold and Omar Community Service
Perold H and Omar R Community Service in Higher Education: A Concept Paper (Joint Education Trust Johannesburg 1997)
Swanepoel and Bezuidenhout 2012 De Jure
Swanepoel I and Bezuidenhout N "The institutionalisation of community service and community service learning at South African tertiary institutions: specific reference to the role of the University law clinics" 2012 De Jure 46-60
US Department of State 2004 IIP Electronic Journals
US Department of State "Issues of Democracy. Access to the courts, Equal Justice for All" 2004 9(2) IIP Electronic Journals 2-35
Van As 2005 Obiter
Van As H "Taking legal aid to the people: unleashing local potential in South Africa" 2005 Obiter 187-206
Van As 2005 J Afr L
Van As H "Legal Aid in South Africa: making justice reality" 2005 J Afr L 54-72
Register of legislation
Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996
Register of government publications
Canadian National Council of Welfare Report on Legal Aid (1995)
Register of cases
City of Johannesburg Metropolitan Municipality v Blue Moonlight Properties 39 (Pty) Ltd 2012 2 SA 104 (CC)
Joseph v City of Johannesburg 2012 4 SA 55 (CC)
Residents of Joe Slovo Community, Western Cape v Thubelisa Homes (Centre on Housing Rights and Evictions as Amici Curiae) 2011 7 BCLR 723 (CC)
S v Khanyile 1988 3 SA 795 (N)
S v Rudman: S v Mthwana 1992 1 SA 343 (AD)
Register of internet sources
American University Washington School of Law Date Unknown www.wcl.american.edu American University Washington School of Law Date Unknown Frequently Asked Question www.wcl.american.edu/externship/
faq.cfm#1 [date of use 11 Feb 2013]
Association of University Legal Aid Institutions of South Africa 2003 www.opensocietyfoundations.org Association of University Legal Aid Institutions of South Africa 2003 Combining Learning and Legal Aid : Clinics in Africa - Report on the First All-Africa, Colloquium on Clinical Legal Education, 23-28 June 2003 www.opensocietyfoundations.org/sites/default/files/
southafrica_20030628.pdf [date of use 2 Dec 2012]
Department of Justice 2012 www.justice.gov.za
Department of Justice 2012 Draft South African Legal Practice Bill www.justice.gov.za/legislation/bills/2012_legal-practice-bill.pdf [date of use 24 Jul 2013]
Legal Aid South Africa 2012 www.legalaid.co.za
Legal Aid South Africa 2012 Legal Aid Guide www.legalaid.co.za [date of use 20 Mar 2013]
Rhodes University Date Unknown www.ru.ac.za
Rhodes University Date Unknown Law Degree Structure www.ru.ac.za/
orientationgateway/departmentsandfaculties/courseandcurriculum/law/ [date of use 31 Dec 2012]
Street Law Date Unknown www.streetlaw.org.za
Street Law Date Unknown About Us www.streetlaw.org.za/index.php/about-us/about-us [date of use 3 Jan 2013]
Students for Law and Social Justice Date Unknown www.slsj.org
Students for Law and Social Justice Date Unknown About Page www.slsj.org/about/ [date of use 10 Feb 2013]
Tulane University Date Unknown www.law.tulane.edu
Tulane University Date Unknown Home Page www.law.tulane.edu [date of use 9 Feb 2013]
University of KwaZulu-Natal Date Unknown www.ukzn.ac.za
University of KwaZulu-Natal Date Unknown Transformation Charter www.ukzn.ac.za [date of use 30 Nov 2012]
University of KwaZulu-Natal 2012 law.ukzn.ac.za
University of KwaZulu-Natal Date Unknown Bachelor of Laws law.ukzn.ac.za/UndergraduateStudies/BachelorOfLaws.aspx [date of use 31 Dec 2012]
University of the Free State Date Unknown ufs.ac.za
University of the Free State Date Unknown Policy Document on the Institutionalisation of Community Service www.ufs.ac.za/content.aspx?id=57 [date of use 2 Dec 2012]
Copyright (c) 2017 Dave Holness
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Copyright in all material published in PER/PELJ vests in the author, provided that authors grant, by submission of their contributions, permission that their contributions may be shared and adapted without restriction. An author furthermore agrees that the same contribution may not be published elsewhere without the written permission of the editor.
Anyone gaining access, electronically or otherwise, to a contribution to PER, may quote from such contribution, use the intellectual content thereof, share and adapt it, but subject to the following conditions:
you must give appropriate credit, provide a link and indicate if changes were made; and
the copyright of the author(s) may not be infringed in any way.