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2017-18 Clinic Highlights

Child and Family Advocacy with Medical-Legal Partnership

  • Appeared as counsel or as Guardian ad Litem in more than 10 cases. 
  • Represented a child and his family in a bullying case. 
  • Established guardianships in three cases involving adults with special needs. 
  • Drafted a will, durable power of attorney, and special needs trust for a couple with two adopted special needs children.
  • Worked on several custody cases involving parents or children with substance abuse issues.

Entrepreneurship and Innovation

  • Secured patents for three student entrepreneurs.
  • Secured four science and technology related patents, filed eight trademark applications.
  • Created a comprehensive broadband toolkit for community-owned broadband infrastructure.
  • Collaborated with West Virginia Secretary of State to create articles of association for Broadband Cooperatives.


  • Obtained a visa for a trafficked Filipino. 
  • Secured permanent residency for an Iranian national.
  • Advised clients during the legal uncertainty related to travel bans.
  • Helped release a Mexican national from detention, reuniting him with his U.S. citizen spouse and disabled stepchild. 
  • Obtained asylum for a Kenyan national and two Iraqi families.

Land Use and Sustainable Development

  • Hosted the third annual statewide Mountain State Land Use Academy that focused on the opioid epidemic in rural communities, broadband Internet, rural tourism, affordable housing, and dilapidated buildings.
  • Expanded work to support affordable housing agencies.
  • Helped a land trust client greatly expand a nature preserve.
  • Established a new nature preserve.
  • Received a $25,000 grant from the Greater Sum Foundation to research and recommend best practices for alternative wastewater treatment.

Litigation and Advocacy (including Taxpayer Advocacy)

  • Won an innocent spouse case regarding understated taxes. 
  • Won a case in the U.S. Fourth Circuit dealing with contract matters. 
  • Handled numerous property and estate disputes. 
  • Sued the West Virginia Division of Highways and an energy company for a client’s property damages. 
  • Served as Guardians ad Litem in 23 cases in Family Court and helped find safe custody placements for more than 30 children. 
  • Provided approximately 500 hours of pro bono service in hearings on domestic violence petitions.

United States Supreme Court

  • Granted certiorari by the Supreme Court of the United States for its case, Dawson v. Steager. A taxation discrimination case, Dawson concerns whether West Virginia can exempt certain state law enforcement officers’ retirement benefits from state taxes without providing the same exemption to the retirement benefits of former U.S. Marshals.

Veterans Advocacy

  • Conducted more than 100 legal intakes of potential veteran clients. 
  • Drafted more than four dozen wills, living wills, advanced health care directives and other legal documents for veterans. 
  • Successfully settled two pending civil cases on behalf of local combat veterans. 
  • Won three denial of claims appeals with the Department of Veterans Affairs.
  • Received a $22,000 gift from the American Association of Professional Landmen-Michael Late Benedum Chapter.

West Virginia Innocence Project

  • Obtained a vacated prison sentence for a client. 
  • Secured a reversal of a conviction for a client. 
  • Represented a client at an omnibus hearing in Biloxi, Mississippi. 
  • Partnered with Baker Botts LLP to gather and submit fire science evidence on behalf of a client, resulting in a re-investigation of the case in light of expert evidence.

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