Information for Students

The Tribal Court Public Defense Clinic provided me with the opportunity to work as a public defender and actually help people, which is the reason I began pursuing my legal degree in the first place. Being a part of the Clinic has been one of my most valuable experiences at US School of Law.  
- Chalia Stallings-Ala’ilima 3L, Tribal Court Public Defense Clinic

What’s Unique about the Tribal Court Public Defense Clinic?

  • Direct client representation
  • Case management from start to finish
  • Frequent court appearances including trials
  • Contact with Native culture and communities

Substantive Practice Area:

  • Tribal Court Criminal Defense
  • Child Welfare – Parent Representation in Tribal Court

Where we practice:

  • Tulalip Tribal Court
  • Puyallup Tribal Court
  • Squaxin Island Tribal Court
  • Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribal Court
  • Chehalis Tribal Court

Typical cases:

Full range of criminal matters under the Tulalip Criminal Code, including:

  • Assault
  • DUI
  • Driving While License Suspended
  • Theft
  • Drug Possession and Delivery
  • Obstruction and Resisting Arrest
  • Disorderly Conduct
  • Parent Dependency Advocacy:
    • Represent parents whose children have been declared “in need of care” by the tribal court
    • Access services needed by parents
    • Negotiation of permanent plans for protection of children

Skills Focus:

  • Interviews of clients and witnesses
  • Factual investigation
  • Client counseling
  • Legal analysis
  • Plea negotiations
  • Trial and advocacy skills
  • Cultural competence

Tribal Court Criminal Defense (E529)
Quarters Offered:
Fall, Winter, Spring
Credits: 4 credits per quarter
Required quarters: Full year
Number of Students accepted: 12
Eligible Students: 3Ls (2Ls with permission)
Selection Basis:3Ls by Lottery; up to three 2Ls by Application
Prerequisite: Trial Advocacy I (B520) - may enroll concurrently
Recommended Courses: American Indian Law, Evidence, Criminal Procedure, Professional Resp.

How to Register

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Last updated 10/27/2010