What is a Certified Legal Intern?
A Certified Legal Intern is a law student who is certified by the Florida Supreme Court to represent clients in court under the supervision of a licensed Florida attorney pursuant to Rule 11. A certified student participates in an optional program at Miami Law, such as a Clinic or the Litigation Skills II internship program. Please visit respective Clinics pages or the Litigation Skills Externship Program page for specific information regarding their certification requirements.
What are the benefits to becoming a Certified Legal Intern?
A Certified Legal Intern can represent clients in and out of court and speak on the official court record as long as he/she is supervised by a licensed Florida attorney. This provides the certified student with valuable real-life experience as a lawyer. Students who are not certified are not allowed to represent clients in this way.
How does a law student become a Certified Legal Intern?
Rule 11-1.2(a) of the Rules Regulating the Florida Bar requires that law students register with the Florida Board of Bar Examiners and receive registrant clearance as one of the eligibility requirements for participating in a Certified Legal Internship program at a law school.
Is there a certain timeframe in which a student should apply for CLI?
Students must provide detailed information about their background and be ethically approved by the Florida Board of Bar examiners to become a Certified Legal Intern. Since this process can take a while, it is recommended students apply in their first semester of law school.
Requirement 1: Obtaining CLI clearance from the Florida Bar (There are 2 Options* for obtaining Certified Legal Internship clearance from the Florida Bar):
Option 1 - Student Registration: From the Florida Bar homepage, click on "checklists," and then select "Register as a First Year Student." This filing status not only begins the processing track for bar admission in Florida but also provides the registrant clearance that is one of the eligibility requirements for participating in a Certified Legal Internship program. Students who anticipate pursuing admission to the Florida Bar upon graduation should choose this option.
Option 2 - Certified Legal Intern Registration: From the Florida Bar homepage, click on "checklists," and then select "Register for Certified Legal Internship Clearance only." This filing status provides CLI clearance only, it does not pursue admission to practice law in Florida. If filed within the first 250 days of beginning law school. Students who do not initially anticipate practicing law in Florida, and only apply for Certified Legal Intern Registration are not foreclosed from applying to take the Florida bar. The Certified Legal Intern Registration can be converted to a bar application, but the total fee paid for the application would be higher.
Requirement 2: Supervising Attorney Approval or Externship Program Registration
After a student has received CLI clearance from the Florida Bar, the student must be approved by a supervising attorney or be registered in an externship program where the student can work as a CLI.
*Note on Requirement 1: Filing a Student Registration (Option 1) or a Certified Legal Intern Registration (Option 2) does not guarantee a student will be cleared by the Florida Bar as a Certified Legal Intern. Students must provide detailed information about their background and be ethically approved by the Florida Board of Bar examiners as a Certified Legal Intern.
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