The UIB Legal Clinic is a space of theoretical and practical training where a legal service to the community is provided. Actual cases are worked in which both the student and the professional tutor, who is a jurist, are personally involved knowing the work of the collaborating entity and the social and sometimes personal context of each case.
Students work real cases, in progress or already resolved; they make interviews, interact with other parts of the process and work within the team of the collaborating entity. As in the methodology applicable to the practice, in general, “learn by doing”, but also learn values and experiences that will not always be found in most of the professional fields for which the student is preparing at the university. It is based on clinical legal education, a model of law training based on the connection with the social and legal reality that has a great academic and social implantation especially in countries of the Anglo-Saxon area and that in Spain still few universities continue.
In the University of the Balearic Islands this training model was implemented in 2012 as a program of external practices of the Faculty of Law. Currently, there are three legal clinics: “Food and Solidarity” in the NGO “Solidarios de Montisión”, “Immigration Law” in Cáritas, and “Refugees Law” in the Red Cross-Balearic Islands.
The University has signed collaboration agreements with the Bar Association of the Balearic Islands and with the mentioned entities in ordre to coordinate voluntary lawyers who want to participate in this program as tutors of the students in practices.
With the UIB Legal Clinic it is intended that students of higher law courses extend their theoretical knowledge and acquire the professional skills necessary for legal practice, and they also receive a sensitization about discriminated or vulnerable groups, who hardly forget, something they probably do not find in their professional career.
Through this program, the task of awareness and social responsibility that corresponds to the University is also implemented in the problems that our society lives and in particular about the legal and social situation of people at risk of social exclusion.
External practices of the Legal Clinic last four or six months, depending on the program. At the end of this period students must submit a report with the summary of all the cases dealt with and the resolution of each case and, if accepted, the practices have a recognition of 6 ECTS equivalent to 180 hours of external practices.