The Housing and Consumer Law Clinic provides representation in housing-related civil litigation. Students enrolled in this clinic represent individuals and small groups in eviction defenses, affirmative habitability actions, illegal rent increases, and real property actions, including predatory loans and foreclosure, fair housing and miscellaneous torts. Students also represent consumers against merchants and homeowners against home improvement contractors in disputes involving sales and services.
The clinic’s seminar is designed to teach students substantive housing and consumer law, as well as thoroughly ground them in motion practice, trial, and appellate advocacy. In preparing their cases, students draw liberally from their course work in contracts, torts, real property, administrative law, business associations, evidence, trial practice and moot court. The professors provide students feedback on their case work in individual tutorials that occur at least once per week.
Students are normally certified to appear in the District of Columbia Superior Court as well as the Office of Administrative Hearings and are primary counsel on a wide variety of civil litigation matters. Students interview clients, draft complaints and answers, propound interrogatories, conduct depositions, and write a wide variety of civil motions and appellate briefs. Many students represent clients at trials or lengthy administrative hearings. The professors select the clinic’s cases based upon their compelling pedagogical value and the needs of the client community.
Housing problems have traditionally been the paramount concern of indigent clients. The Housing and Consumer Law Clinic has a pedigree of nearly forty years and its graduates have become tenant and housing lawyers across the country, including leaders of the local tenant bar. Proud of its tradition of feisty litigation, it has achieved expertise over the last decade in affirmative warranty litigation, fair housing eviction issues, and, currently, administrative rental housing litigation. It has adjudicated numerous tenant petitions before D.C. administrative law judges, more than most other public interest organizations.
Contacting the Housing and Consumer Law Clinic
If you are seeking legal assistance, please call (202) 274-5073.
Housing and Consumer Law Clinic
UDC David A. Clarke School of Law
4340 Connecticut Avenue NW, Room 302
Washington, DC 20008
Clinic Director: Professor Ron Hochbaum