The Client Counseling competition, held each fall, gives first-year students the unique opportunity to develop their interviewing and counseling skills. The competition simulates an office consultation environment in which a team of two law students, acting as attorneys, meets with a client for the first time. They conduct an interview in which they attempt to obtain legally relevant factual information from the client and supply the client with a preliminary summary of that client's legal position and possible actions. Clients are played by second and third year students, and the two winning teams of the intramural competition go on to represent the school at the annual ABA Regional Client Counseling Competition.
Teams conduct a 30 minute interview with the client, followed by 15 minutes during which student-attorneys confer with each other about their impressions of the interview itself and how they would handle the situation. Both the interview and the post-interview conference are observed and judged as part of the competitive round.
Judges observe two one-hour rounds of counseling in an evening, providing feedback to the teams, ranking them on elements of their performances, and they ultimately choose a winning pair to move on to the next round.
Teams are evaluated on their ability to elicit information from the client, to establish a rapport with the client, to convey the necessary legal information to the client, and to plan future action.
For more information, email the current chairs of the Client Counseling competition at: