The VanSickle Family Law Clinic, students under the supervision of clinic director, Chante Brantley, represent low-income clients in matters of family law such as divorce, child custody, visitation, child support enforcement and modification actions, and adoption.
This spring the VanSickle Family Law Clinic officially launched the Pro Se Help Desk, a collaborative project with the Dallas County Family Courts. The Pro Se Help Desk has been a successful experience for both our clinic students and for members of the community who are unable to afford legal assistance. Our students have hosted the help desk approximately ten times this semester and have been greeted by long lines of people seeking our help. The hands-on opportunity to serve the community has been extremely rewarding, and many of those seeking help have been incredibly thankful for the help. Most of the cases have been helping prove-up divorces or filing the petitions, but have helped on multiple custody modification and more specialized cases.
Clinic student 2L Amanda Payne advocated for her client through a long day of mediating child custody and support issues, resulting in a mediated settlement agreement.
Acting as court-appointed amicus attorneys, students 3L Rachel Rizzieri and 2L Jourdan Dukes assisted in bringing a 3-4 year original suit affecting parent-child relationship to conclusion. On the date of final trial, the students worked with the parties to reach an agreement and proved it up with the court.