The Family Justice Clinic of the Legal Services Center focuses on offering clients legal assistance on divorce, paternity, child and spousal support, protective orders/restraining orders, and family defense.
Students in the Family Justice Clinic work under close supervision to manage all aspects of a family law case, from the initial client intake to representing clients in both Family and District Courts in Massachusetts, such as drafting pleadings and other case-related and court documents; requesting, gathering, and analyzing discovery; case-management and organization; negotiating with opposing parties and counsel, and working with complex financial issues. Students will conduct intake and provide legal advice and consultation on-site at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital and other community health centers. In addition to learning and using valuable legal and litigation skills, students will also have the opportunity to prepare and present workshops and trainings on relevant legal issues to community groups and service providers.
Students have the opportunity to:
- Conduct factual and legal research
- Interview clients
- Draft complaints and other legal documents
- Draft and respond to discovery requests
- Negotiate with opposing parties and counsel
- Argue motions and represent clients in district court and family and probate court
- Develop and present trainings and workshops
The clinic is a part of the Legal Services Center (LSC), a general practice community law office in Jamaica Plain. LSC’s diverse clinics provide clinical instruction to second- and third-year law students and serve as a laboratory for the innovative delivery of legal services. Students are taught and mentored under the supervision and guidance of clinical instructors and fellows in one of LSC’s litigation clinical practices.
How to Register
The clinic is offered in the Fall and Spring semesters. You can learn about the required clinical course component, clinical credits and the clinical registration process by reading the course catalog description and exploring the links in this section.
Meet the Instructors
Clinical Instructor; Lecturer on Law
Marianna Yang joined the Legal Services Center in December 2019. Since 2002, Marianna has represented both plaintiffs and defendants in various fields including MassTorts (MDL) Litigation, litigation involving Class A railroad companies, and most recently, in Child Welfare and Domestic Relations litigation. She served as a panel member in the CPCS Child and Family Law Division Trial Panel and the Appellate Panel. She is also a trained mediator and a member of the Massachusetts Collaborative Law Council.
Rebecca Greening is Clinical Instructor, Family Justice Clinic. She is a graduate of Northeastern University Law School with an undergraduate degree in social work from New York University. Her career has focused on representing clients in family law and child welfare matters with an emphasis on domestic relations/divorce cases, child support actions, paternity actions, guardianships, and care and protection cases, including actions to terminate parental rights. Prior to coming to LSC, she worked as a private attorney and as a court appointed trial attorney for the Committee for Public Counsel Services’ Children and Family Law Division in Juvenile and Probate courts representing parents and children who can’t afford an attorney in state intervention/child welfare cases.
In the News
‘We want to be your voice’
By Olivia Klein Abigail was nervous the first time she walked into the courthouse. She’d been working with students at the Family and Domestic Violence Law Clinic, and she wanted to make sure that her story was told in the courtroom. “I thought that I was going to be able to speak, and I did
November 16, 2022
Holistic Care through Interdisciplinary Partnership
By Olivia Klein “It just makes sense.” Samir Hanna, clinical instructor at the WilmerHale Legal Services Center’s (LSC) Housing Law Clinic, smiles and shrugs as he describes the logic of the center’s medical-legal partnership with Mass General Brigham. “It really just makes sense.” Both the Housing Law Clinic and the Family and Domestic Violence Law
September 20, 2022
Home Isn’t A Guarantee For Survivors Fleeing Domestic Abusers During COVID-19
via Huffpostby Alanna Vagianos Angela estimated that she and her four children have moved 10 times since they fled her abusive husband in 2017. She doesn’t always have the money to move, but when he finds out where they live, she has no choice. One time when he found Angela, he showed up with a
June 14, 2021
“They Don’t Teach You This in Law School,” Moments in the Domestic Violence and Family Law Clinic
By: Tara Louise Casey, LL.M. ’19 As an LL.M. student who has recently finished my primary law degree in Ireland – where there is not a great amount of emphasis on practical legal education – I was eager to explore clinical and pro-bono opportunities at Harvard. I had previously studied domestic violence from an academic
June 27, 2019