Legal Clinic Course

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, a number of summer legal clinic placements are available to be completed remotely. The SAO is currently in communication with our partners regarding the Fall 2020 term; more information will follow.

The Legal Clinic Course places students in local community organizations and legal clinics. This is a great opportunity for law students entering the 3rd or 4th year to get involved in a placement focused on legislative research and development.

The application deadline for the legal clinic course is Monday, August 10, 17:00. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact [at]

Legal Clinic Course

The Legal Clinic Course gives students an opportunity to enrich their legal education through practical work experience in law-related fields. Students work in community organizations and legal clinics providing information and assistance to socially disadvantaged individuals, under the supervision of a lawyer.

This course promotes a deeper understanding of the legal system’s response to poverty and inequality. Students are confronted with the social reality of access to justice and the interrelationship between legal concerns and economic, psychological, ethical and other social problems.

The work covers areas such as family, consumer, criminal, landlord-tenant, immigration, environmental and human rights. Our 16 local partner organizations include Action Réfugiés Montréal, Éducaloi, Innocence McGill, Mile End Legal Clinic and Project Genesis.

Who should consider applying?

Students participate in the Legal Clinic Course for a variety of reasons, including a desire to give back to the local community, promote social justice, or gain hands-on experience. This may also be a good choice if you would like to learn more about a Clinic’s area of expertise (for example: refugee law, public legal education, animal law, etc.).


Open to students who have completed at least 2 years of the BCL/JD Program.

Credit weight

3 or 6 credits in the Summer, Fall or Winter semesters


Applications are due in late March for the following Summer, Fall and Winter semesters. Students may indicate a maximum of three choices for their host organization. Final decisions are made by the host organization.

The interview period is from August 11th to 20th. 


Students are encouraged to apply for support from the Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg Fund for Community Engagement. The award has a need-based component. To be considered for funding during your legal clinic placement, please complete an In-Course Financial Aid Application on Minerva. Application information is emailed each spring.

Students who already receive student aid might also qualify for an Enriched Educational Opportunity bursary.

Faculty contacts

Nancy Czemmel, Director of Student Life & Learning
and a student coordinator (see this year’s Legal Clinic Course Application Booklet on the SAO's Forms webpage for contact information).

“My experience volunteering at the Montréal SPCA has been one of the most meaningful experiences I have had at McGill Law. I was able to develop my legal research and writing skills while working on projects that advanced the interests of animals and were very valuable to me. I am incredibly grateful to have had this opportunity and to have worked with remarkable individuals committed to improving social justice in our community.

I chose to participate in the Legal Clinic Course Program because it offers practical experience and the chance to contribute to a group in our community. I recommend the program to anyone who wants to apply their acquired legal knowledge, hone their analytical capacities, and, most importantly, foster genuine change in the lives of our marginalized community members. There is no better way to realize your ability to effect positive change through your new legal skills than by taking a legal clinic course.”

Kirby Leigh Smith, legal clinic program participant, Summer & Fall 2012, BCL/LLB’13

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