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Legislative Clinic

Legislative Clinic

The Clinic combines legislative placements in Congress, the Pennsylvania Legislature, Philadelphia City Council, executive agencies, and nonprofit organizations with a robust weekly seminar that examines legislative process, legislative drafting, and legislative advocacy. Students interact with clinic alumni in legislative positions and learn federal and state legislative drafting techniques in the classroom while engaging with cutting-edge policy issues in their chosen legislative placements.

Legislative clinic

The Lawyer as Policy-Maker

Founded in 1997, the Legislative Clinic is one of only a handful of law school clinical programs in the nation devoted exclusively to legislative lawyering and the formation of public policy. The Clinic combines federal legislative fieldwork in Congress with a classroom seminar involving academic readings, simulations, guest speakers, and legislative drafting exercises.

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All Clinic News 

Penn Law & Free Migration Project report reveals ongoing unreported violations of patient rights with medical deportations

The authors of the report include Toll Public Interest Fellow Erica V. Rodarte Costa L’22, Jacqueline Monnat L’21, and Free Migration Project’s Executive Director David Bennion and Program Coordinator Adrianna Torres-García.

Legislative Clinic opens doors for students passionate about public policy

Practice Professor Louis S. Rulli guides the Legislative Clinic through which law students receive placements in various legislative offices from the House Committee on Foreign Affairs to the City Council of Philadelphia.

Helen Eisner L?12 began doing investigative work in Penn Law?s Legislative Clinic.

Helen Eisner L’12 discusses her path from the Law School to government ethics investigator

Helen Eisner L’12 explains the investigative work done by the Office of Congressional Ethics.

The Clinical Education

In their field work, students engage in a broad range of legislative activity, including

  • Drafting proposed legislation
  • Preparing legislators and staff for important committee hearings and meetings with lobbyists
  • Conducting research and analysis in order to develop legislative solutions to public policy issues and individual constituent concerns

Through the combination of classroom and field work, students gain a deeper understanding of federal and state legislative process, legislative drafting, theories of statutory interpretation, constitutional restrictions on lawmaking, legislative advocacy, lobbying accountability and disclosure, and ethical issues confronting legislative lawyers – and they have a unique opportunity to be directly involved with some of the most important public policy issues of our time.


Contact Us

Legislative Clinic

Tel: 215.898.8427

University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School
Gittis Center for Clinical Legal Studies
3501 Sansom Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104

Fax: 215.573.6783