About Legal Services
The Legal Services office provides legal advice and information in times of immediate need as well as preventative education and counseling in order to avoid unnecessary litigation. The attorney provides an initial consultation in all situations to all qualified full-time undergraduate students at no cost. The goal of the office is to provide legal advice and education to students in situtations where they would be unlikely to obtain those services or access. Furthermore, one of the goals of the service is to education students about their rights and their responsibilities as students and as citizens. Legal Services will provide representation in those situations enumerated below and whenever possibile without detracting from the necessity of being avilable to all covered students.
Availability of Services Defined
All students who pay the Student Activity Fee are eligible for an initial legal consultation. After consultation, the student will be offered free services for civil matters of less than $5,000.00 in dispute and violation level offenses. All matters requiring courtroom appearances must be within a 40-mile radius of Durham. The attorney may be available for other services that are consistent with the goals of the office and not unduly time consuming.
Representation in these and other areas may be limited by conflicts, such as student versus student disputes. Representation or advice regarding actions against the university is prohibited and the student will be referred to a private counsel at their own expense. Additionally, students are not entitled to advice or representation on intra-university disciplinary matters oftened referred to as judicial board. The attorney may decline any representation that would require more than 20 hours of legal work or which is without merit. The purpose of the exclusion is to ensure that the attorney is available to al lstudents and not involved in protracted or unmeritorious litigation on behalf of a single student.
Further inquiries may be directed to the Judicial Affairs Chairperson of the Student Senate.
The Legal Services contract is for a one-year term and is put out to bid every three years by the student government and the university. It has been in existence since the 1960's. Every semester hundreds of students receive legal advice and representation.