Levin College of Law

Pro Bono Program

UF Law Pro Bono Program

The mission of the UF Law Pro Bono Program is to help students develop an awareness of their future ethical and professional responsibilities to provide service to their community. Participation in the program gives students the opportunity to perform valuable community service while learning about the legal needs of the underserved and developing the legal skills necessary to help meet those needs.

Definition of “Law-Related Pro Bono Service”:  “Law-related pro bono service” is defined as work:

  • Of a legal nature,
  • Performed under the supervision of a licensed attorney,
  • Provided to persons of limited means or on behalf of the public interest,
  • For which no compensation or academic credit is provided.

For purposes of this definition:

  • Work “for which no compensation or academic credit is provided” includes:
    • Excess externship hours at an approved non-profit, judicial or government placement;
    • Excess clinical hours;
    • Service learning activities completed as part of an academic course requirement, provided that other coursework (exclusive of those activities) meets the minimum time required under ABA credit-hour standards for the number of credits awarded;
    • For students who are awarded public interest fellowships to participate in public service internships and externships, hours in excess of the minimum requirements of the fellowships.
  • “Compensation” does not include in-kind donations such as food, or travel subsidies provided to offset out-of-pocket expenses incurred by student volunteers.

Pro Bono Graduation Requirement:  Beginning with the Fall 2018 entering class, UF Law students must complete 40 hours of law-related pro bono service as a condition of graduation. Students who have not completed the required hours prior to the start of their final semester of law school must meet with an advisor. A student may include a maximum of 10% of time spent in training and certification in the total hours. Transfer students may seek pro bono credit for work completed at their prior law school.

Recognition of Extraordinary Service: The Law School will recognize students who commit an extraordinary amount of pro bono service at award levels of 75 and 150 hours.

Reporting of Service Hours: In order to have your pro bono hours counted, students must record pro bono hours on a pro bono log, signed by an attorney supervisor and report their pro bono hours within the Symplicity system. Instructions for submitting your pro bono hours can be found in Symplicity, under the Resources tab of the Document Library.

Pro Bono Placements: Approved pro bono placements include:

  • UF Law’s in-house pro bono projects, including Alternative Spring Break, the Restoration of Civil Rights Projects, VITA, or other approved student-led pro bono initiatives.
  • Uncompensated law-related work at a government agency, legal aid entity, or non-profit or advocacy organization that advances the public good.
  • Community legal education, including participation in “Know Your Rights” presentations designed to provide information about the law or the legal system to those who might not otherwise have such information.
  • Judicial internships for which the student receives neither compensation nor academic credit.
  • Unpaid work with a law firm which is providing legal assistance on a pro bono basis.

Corporate internships/externships do not qualify as pro bono placements.