Federal Legislation & Administrative Clinic
The Federal Legislation & Administrative Clinic (FLAC) trains lawyers to practice in and advocate to Congress and the Executive Branch, with special emphasis on advising senior leaders.
Some aspects of these practice environments are distinct. Article I (congressional) and Article II (administrative) legal processes produce law and policy under rules and procedures that are different from Article III (judicial) legal process. Lawyers within the Article I and II branches must be as comfortable with non-lawyer principals and informal practice environments as they are with lawyer supervisors and formal proceedings. Lawyers in Article I and II practice must brief, advise, and advocate in written and oral formats under timelines far shorter than a typical court filing deadline and under field conditions less predictable than a courtroom or law firm conference room. And, they must think prospectively and creatively about what the law could or should be, not just what it is or was at the time a case or controversy arose.
Through practice for clients, classroom discussion, and intensive exercises, the FLAC trains lawyers to be ready to practice effectively on day one of a job in Congress, the Executive Branch, or advocacy community. The skills honed in the FLAC are fully transferrable and useful in other practice environments as well.
The FLAC teaches lawyers to write and speak both precisely and concisely. The Clinic also trains lawyers to analyze fully the legal, process, policy, political, and personality (LP4) aspects of their client’s or principal’s options, preferences, and obligations. Finally, the FLAC emphasizes self-reflective lawyering, and practicing with integrity despite serious pressures of time, personality, and consequence.
Creating Legislative Lawyers
Established in 1993, the Clinic is a one semester program designed to teach students how to become effective legislative lawyers. As theorized by its founder, Professor Chai Feldblum, a legislative lawyer is a person who is trained to:
recognize and assess legal and political aspects of legislative, regulatory, or policy issues;
perform the background research necessary to address legal and political issues;
develop creative solutions to problems posed by legal and policy concerns;
present such solutions in clear and persuasive oral and written forms; and
engage in the negotiations necessary to ensure the adoption of legislative solutions.
The Clinic's Dual Mission
We undertake projects that advance the public interest and provide quality representation to our non-profit clients. We provide Georgetown law students with the training, supervision, and field experience necessary for them to become effective in advocacy to or practice within the federal Legislative and Executive Branches.