SPJ Pro Bono Internship in the Probate and Family Court
Senior Partners for Justice, a unique pro bono initiative of the Volunteer Lawyers Project, is pleased to offer an internship program for law students who want to provide critical assistance to low-income clients while gaining valuable insight into how the Probate and Family Court operates. The internship operates during each semester and in the summer.
ABOUT SENIOR PARTNERS FOR JUSTICE
Founded in 2002 by Hon. Edward M. Ginsburg, a retired justice of the Massachusetts Probate and Family Court, Senior Partners for Justice includes practitioners of all levels of experience, from retired attorneys and judges to new members admitted to the bar and law students, who handle family law matters pro bono for low-income clients who would otherwise go unrepresented.
ABOUT THE INTERNSHIP PROGRAM
The program is a 10-week commitment. Interns are placed in the Suffolk, Middlesex, and Norfolk Probate and Family Court Register’s Office, working directly alongside courthouse staff. This is an unpaid, non-credit internship, but it offers invaluable experience and a flexible schedule that can fit around other commitments.
We ask interns to spend at least one full day or two half days, preferably mornings, at their courthouse each week. Students provide information and the appropriate forms to pro se litigants navigating through the Probate and Family Court. In addition interested students have the opportunity to also participate in VLP’s Guardianship and Family Law Clinics
The nature of the internship is a little different at each court:
- At the Suffolk Probate and Family Court in Boston interns staff the very busy Register’s office and have the chance to help the Lawyer for the Day, and observe court proceedings. Click for court information and directions.
- At the Middlesex Probate and Family Court in Cambridge interns rotate between different departments, gaining broad exposure to areas including Divorce, Paternity, and Probate. Click for court information and directions.
- At the Norfolk Probate and Family Court in Canton (accessible only by car), interns work directly with the court staff members who assist unrepresented litigants, and have a chance for more one-on-one interaction at a less busy court. Click for court information and directions.
All participants in the internship program will receive support from the staff at the Volunteer Lawyers Project, invitations to trainings, luncheons, and other events through Senior Partners and VLP. We encourage incoming interns to take the family law training at our office either before or during the internship. This training provides a foundation for the work the interns will be doing in the courts. The list of family law and guardianship trainings is available on our website at www.vlpnet.org.