Baylor Law School to Inaugurate 'People's Law School'Jan. 24, 2006
by Alan Hunt, (254) 710-6271
Baylor Law School will open its classrooms to the public on Saturday, Feb. 25, as it hosts the first "People's Law School." The program is free and open to the public.
The People's Law School is a half-day event where volunteer attorneys and legal experts teach courses designed to educate consumers about their legal rights and to make the law "user friendly." Baylor Law School plans to sponsor the program annually for the Central Texas community.
"The Law School is so pleased to host this event," said Law Dean Brad Toben. "Our theme in our law school educational program is one that emphasizes service as the essence of lawyering. This program is one that focuses upon equipping laypersons to understand the legal issues that may touch their lives. That, of course, is one of the touchstones of a helping profession -- meeting people at their point of need."
Twelve 60-minute courses are being offered at this year's event, which will be held at the Sheila and Walter Umphrey Law Center on the north side of University Parks Drive on the Baylor campus. Registered participants can attend any two courses of their choosing. The courses focus on useful issues such as consumer rights, small businesses, landlord/tenant rights, health insurance, bankruptcy, retirement planning, wills, elder law, employment law, and family law. (A complete list of the courses offered appears below.)
The program begins at 8:30 a.m. with check-in, followed by introductory statements at 9:15 a.m. Courses will be taught from 9:30 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. during two timeslots. For example, participants can take a Wills and Estate Planning course at 9:30 a.m. and a Small Business course at 10:40 a.m. The courses are directed toward people who need general legal information about the law.
Anyone interested in attending this event must register online or by mail. To register by mail, participants should pick up a registration card at any of the seven Shipley Do-Nut locations in McLennan County. The registration card contains a detachable postcard, which must be mailed by Friday, Feb. 17. Participants also can register online by visiting Baylor Law School's website at http://law.baylor.edu and clicking on the "People's Law School" link. The deadline for online registrations is Tuesday, Feb. 21. Only those who have registered for this event before the relevant deadlines will be eligible to attend.
The first 200 participants to check-in on the day of the event will receive a free copy of Richard Alderman's book "Know Your Rights: Answers to Texan's Everyday Legal Questions." Professor Alderman, who is commonly referred to as the "People's Lawyer," is the director of the Center for Consumer Law at the University of Houston Law Center. More information on Texans' legal rights will be available at the event via brochures covering a vast area of legal issues.
For more information, visit the People's Law School website, or contact the program coordinators, Professor Patricia Wilson at Baylor Law School, (254) 710-6591, Patricia_Wilson@baylor.edu; and law student Mollie C. McGraw, phone (254) 644-9962, Mollie_McGraw@baylor.edu.
Participants can register for up to two courses from the following list:
Access to the Law
Small Claims Court
How to find and work with an attorney
Arbitration and mediation
Consumer Law I
Deceptive car sales
Shoddy home and car repairs
Consumer Law II
Dealing with debt collectors
Fair Credit Reporting Act
Hiring and firing employees
Discrimination at work
How to get paid for your work
The New Medicare Prescription Drug Plan
Scams against the elderly
Social Security and Medicare
Divorce, child custody and support
Finding the Law
Where to find the law
How to use the library and Internet
Rights and responsibilities
Fair Housing Act
Dealing with insurance companies
Auto insurance and auto accidents
What to do when you have a claim
Maximizing insurance claim recovery
Homeowner and health insurance claims
Consumer bankruptcy laws
What bankruptcy means for individuals
Choice of business entity
Tips to avoid legal pitfalls
Wills and Estate Planning
Requirements of a valid will
Basic estate planning techniques
Powers of Attorney