Law Offices:
News & announcements for the week of
January 22, 2001

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This program in which first-year students may apply is different from anything at any other law school!  The first-year students who are accepted begin the program during their second year of law school.

Becoming a lawyer takes more than sitting through three years of law school lectures.  It involves more than learning how to cross-examine hostile witnesses, write persuasive briefs, and talk to clients.  Reading about subjects such as legal ethics or law practice management is not the same as learning about them from experience.

Throughout the LADR program, you will learn legal doctrine, lawyering skills, and professional values, and work in Chicago-Kent's teaching law firm, supervised by clinical professors who are expert practitioners and mentors.  You will learn the art of lawyering through two years of intensive skills and clinical training.  Your experience will teach you how to become a competent, ethical, socially responsible lawyer.

Information Meetings will be scheduled in the last week of January or first week in February.  Look for the announcement in the Record, the Law Offices’ bulletin board  outside Suite 600, and throughout the Law School.  In the interim, to learn more about this program, please contact Prof. Gary Laser, Room 631, or pick up an application and curriculum memorandum in Room 600.

APPLICATIONS FOR THIS PROGRAM MUST BE TURNED IN BY FEBRUARY 12, 2001.  Please turn in applications in Room 600.


There is an opening at the Advice Desk for a law student (of any year in school) for data entry of statistical data gathered from the Circuit Court of Cook County.  Pay is $10 per hour and the position is part-time.  Data entry can be done at the student’s convenience.  The hours are approximately 10 hours per week.  If interested, please contact Professor Pam Kentra at .


This two-credit course (no paper) will focus on the elements, defenses, sentencing  trends and emerging legal issues associated with the major federal tax crimes,  including the grandaddy of them all, attempted tax evasion. We will discuss IRS and Department of Justice investigative authority, techniques, and prosecution policies, as well as the government’s substantial forfeiture power. Other topics will include the interplay with civil tax penalties, an overview of applicable federal sentencing guidelines, trial tactics, and select ethical issues.  Special attention will be devoted to analyzing the evidentiary proof necessary to sustain the substantive crimes, and particular strategies that might effectively weaken or even terminate a pending administrative investigation.  The class will be taught by Professor Jonathan Decatorsmith, a former senior trial attorney with the IRS and tax fraud specialist, and currently the Supervisor of the Tax Litigation Clinic.   Though not required, it is recommended that students have completed Tax Procedure, Evidence, and one Criminal Procedure class. 


Chicago-Kent College of Law’s Information Technology & Entrepreneurship Clinic (ITEC) fills two needs in the Chicagoland technology community. First, ITEC provides competent technology law services to small technology firms and local start-ups, at affordable rates through its unique fee generating model (hyperlink).  ITEC attorneys and students help these companies stay abreast of the rapidly evolving legal issues relevant to the technology entrepreneur. 

Second, and most importantly, ITEC provides Chicago-Kent law students with practical, hands-on experience working on cutting-edge legal issues, under the supervision of experienced technology attorneys.  These students will then travel into the Chicago legal market upon graduation, providing Chicago with technologically savvy lawyers to meet its developing technology law needs.

ITEC assists new ventures through the each stage of developing a start-up -- business organization; protection of intellectual property rights; transactional and contract drafting; and, current advice regarding evolving legal issues relevant to doing business on the Internet.  Students who intern in ITEC will assist in providing legal services to established IT companies and Internet start-ups.


First Defense Legal Aid (FDLA), the only program of its kind in the country, fills the gap in Illinois’ public defender system by providing 24-hour free legal representation to adults and children in police custody or under police investigation.  FDLA provides a unique “frontline” criminal defense experience for students, enabling them to see: how evidence is collected and created; the tactics of the Chicago Police Department when trying to extract a confession or question witnesses; the role that the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Felony Review Team plays during the beginning stages of a criminal investigation; and the utter vulnerability of children and adults when under intensive and sometimes abusive interrogation.  In addition to this stationhouse representation, DSLA also works toward the permanent improvement of our criminal justice system by educating the public, organizing community residents to combat police misconduct, by engaging in legislative and community advocacy, investigating patterns of misconduct by the Chicago Police, taking select criminal defense cases to trial, and initiating 42 U.S.C. §1983 litigation to improve the policies and procedures of the Chicago Police as they relate to the treatment of persons in police custody.

Students participating in the FDLA class must be eligible for a Illinois Supreme Court Rule 711 license.  Students representing FDLA clients at Chicago Police Stations will gain unique insight into the criminal justice system at its earliest stage and be able to:

1. View and Document Line-Ups, DNA testing, and Halt Lie Detector Tests.
2. Assert a Client’s 5th Amendment Right to Remain Silent and 6th Amendment Right to Counsel.
3. Gather Information from the Police on the Progress of the Investigation.
4. Document Police Brutality and other Misconduct.
5. Counsel Clients and Provide Information to their Families.
6. Interview Witnesses.
7. Demand a Client’s Immediate Release at the Police Station and in Court.


The Law Offices of Chicago-Kent offers nine long-standing programs in live-client clinical legal education which accommodate over 150 students in the fall and spring semesters and over 50 students in the summer semester. 

For a complete description of all clinical programs, please visit the Law Offices Home Page at
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