Monday, August 17, 2020

How Law Students Are Helping During COVID-19

Illustration of Computer Screen

Illustration by Alondra Pulido

The pandemic has put a halt on many people’s lives, but legal assistance is still an essential need and numerous communities have been made vulnerable due to COVID-19. Due to these urgent needs, Law students around the country are actively providing legal research during the COVID-19 crisis. For instance, the ABA Journal reports “more than 300 law students, paralegals, and student paralegals have offered to provide remote pro-bono support for coronavirus-related matters." At the UW Law School's Entrepreneurial Law Clinic, students and advisors are working to help small businesses and non-profits find and leverage the right opportunities and application information during the pandemic. The People’s Parity Project, a national organization, even gives you a chance to volunteer for research projects via a web form!

While many of the work requires immediate assistance, clinics and faculty from law schools have also been looking ahead to long-term systemic problems and researching policy improvements. Gallagher Law Library provides an extensive collection of topics and online databases useful for research during this time. Below is a list of high-demand topics that students can learn more about by accessing the many databases and resources available from our website.

  • Wills and Estate Planning

  • Research regarding paid leave

  • Drafting bail motions

  • Immigration Needs

  • Release from Immigration custody

  • Emergency Unemployment Expansion

  • Cash Transfers

  • Paid sick leave and paid medical/caregiving leave

  • Create Know Your Rights materials

  • Support legal action and advocacy for the release of incarcerated people 

Since the COVID-19 crisis has affected so much of our daily lives—and therefore impacts legal issues—you might find some useful resources in our Law in the Time of COVID-19 guide.

Whatever you’re doing during this time—externships, pro bono work, or paid work—remember that you can still ask for research help from the library, via phone or email. Check out this page for information about online access to Bloomberg Law, Lexis, and Westlaw.

For more information on this subject check out these websites:

COVID Legal Research Natural Disaster Aid

How can Law students help in the midst of COVID-19

For some law students, clinic work during COVID-19 feels more real than ever before