Pro Bono:
For the Public Good

UC Hastings’ Pro Bono Program offers students opportunities to meaningfully engage with clients and bring essential legal services to underserved communities. Students who choose to participate gain practical skills, and make sincere connections with non-profits and lawyers. Hastings’ unique location in central San Francisco allows students to work with our neighbors on a range of issues, including fighting evictions, seeking asylum, challenging sentences of death, and set up socially-focused businesses.

Students have the opportunity to sign the Pro Bono Pledge, where students make a personal commitment to provide 45 hours of pro bono hours prior to graduation. This Pledge honors the California Bar and ABA’s encouragement for all attorneys to devote time annually to pro bono service to ensure the promise of “justice for all” is a reality.

The Numbers

Figures from the past five graduating classes alone

400+
Graduates with Pro Bono Distinction
45K
Hours of Pro Bono Service to the Greater Community
140+
Graduates with Outstanding Achievement in Pro Bono Distinction

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The provision of pro bono legal services is an integral component of a legal education and to the practice of law.  UC Hastings encourages and fosters pro bono participation by all members of our community in an effort to improve access to justice for all.



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Pro Bono at UC Hastings: For the Public Good

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA)

For more than a decade UC Hastings law students have partnered with the IRS and the United Way to offer free tax preparation and filing services to low-income community members.  In 2020 and 2021, we took our program virtual in response to COVID-19.  We hope to return to in-person tax preparation services in February 2022.

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Want to Support Our Students?

One important way to support our students and our community clients is by donating to the Pro Bono Program.  Funds are used to directly support student engagements in the community.  For example, funds can provide sufficient money for gas or hotel rooms for students providing services to those located in rural areas of the state, or for travel throughout the country on Alternative Spring Break programs.

Please consider donating to the Pro Bono Department generally, or if you or your firm would like to sponsor an Alternative Spring Break trip, please reach out to the Pro Bono Department Director, Brittany Glidden.  In past years we have had Spring Break trips where students: assist refugees seeking asylum in preparing for credible fear interviews; engage in investigation discriminatory practices in rural housing; and help immigrants obtain naturalization papers. Student demand for these opportunities is high and it helps our students develop important lawyering skills while making a meaningful difference in the community.  Consider being part of funding a trip!

Donate Here!