Thomas Law School Pro Bono Program

There’s more to learning than what goes on in the classroom. We understand that practical experience while you study will enhance your employment prospects. That’s why pro bono service is at the heart of Thomas More Law School.

Thomas Law School Pro Bono Program

Real world experience

Our pro bono program provides you with an exceptional opportunity to experience the operation of the law and ethics in a practice setting. You’ll gain first-hand experience with real clients and real cases, gaining exposure to the challenges experienced by those who are disadvantaged in Australia.

When you study with us, you’ll also have the opportunity to get involved in other practical activities including moots, negotiations and witness interview competitions.

We’ll make sure you graduate with advanced legal skills that are backed by practical experience.

Professional recognition

Licensing and accreditation bodies around the world are increasingly requiring lawyers to undertake pro bono legal services. This program ensures that not only will you graduate with a world-class degree, but also the job-ready skills and experience future employers are looking for.

ACU Refugee Law Project

Our Sydney law school gives students the opportunity to assist asylum seekers in matters before the Federal Circuit Court.

The Refugee Law Project is a ground-breaking pro bono program that offers support to asylum seekers who are considering taking their cases to court. For most, English is their second language, and many have little faith in the legal process.

By assisting these refugees through their court cases our students not only gain exceptional hands on legal experience, they are exposed to the real world challenges many people in Australia face.

Frances Coyne

Making a real difference

Bachelor of Law/Global Studies graduate Frances Coyne joined the Refugee Law Project as part of her studies. She took on the deportation case against a Bangladeshi man.

Her actions secured a major court win for the asylum seeker, giving hope to him and to thousands of refugees.

“This is a big win. Frances took it on with no experience other than the Refugee Law Project and was able to identify a legal precedent that ensured we won the case,” project founder and Sydney barrister Victor Kline said.

“You meet these people, hear their stories and many of them are quite sad,” Frances said. “So, to be involved in a favourable outcome for the client is great for the soul.”

“This isn’t filing, this is going into court, meeting clients, analysing documents, corresponding with the Minister’s solicitors and making recommendations to one of our team of pro bono barristers,” Mr Kline said.

“For someone like Frances, meeting refugees and offering a service that makes them feel comfortable and restores trust gives everyone hope that we can achieve something.”

Thomas Law School Pro Bono Program

International experience

While some of our placements take place abroad, others, such as the ground-breaking Refugee Law Program detailed above, will give you an awareness of the international refugee crisis and exposure to international law. Where will your legal studies take you? Some examples of recent study tours include the Law Immersion Human Rights study tour to Myanmar, annual mooting competition Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot in Vienna and Hong Kong, Rome study tours, New Colombo Plan study tours to the Philippines and EU study tour of United Nations Brussels.

Our partners

Previous ACU students have completed pro bono work for organisations such as:

  • Magistrates Court of Victoria
  • Salvos Legal
  • Clayton Utz
  • Justice Connect
  • CARE Australia
  • Uphold and Recognise
  • Various community based legal centres
Gazi Abbas
Sydney law student Gazi Abbas spent his pro bono time with Legal Aid NSW and said it was "...by far the best part of my studies. My pro bono experience added a practical element to my studies and it was a privilege that students don’t get at other law schools."
Gazi Abbas
Bachelor of Laws, Sydney

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