Inmate Legal Assistance Project
The Inmate Legal Assistance Project offers students a unique opportunity to sharpen their practical legal skills while providing free legal assistance to incarcerated individuals at the federal penitentiary in Terre Haute, Indiana and other prisons across the country.
ILAP is a student-run organization funded by the U.S. Department of Justice. Working under the guidance of an experienced appellate attorney, students counsel incarcerated individuals on a variety of legal issues, from direct appeals and ineffective assistance of counsel claims to tort claims and petitions for habeas corpus relief. During a typical year, students have the opportunity to meet with and interview potential clients on regular visits to the U.S. penitentiary in Terre Haute. During the COVID-19 pandemic, however, ILAP is exploring the possibility of virtual visits for the fall 2020 semester.
The opportunities with ILAP go beyond prison visits and letter-writing. ILAP members have the chance to develop their legal research and writing skills by drafting internal memoranda on the most current legal issues facing incarcerated people. Recent memo topics include the federal death penalty and access to legal resources in prisons during the COVID-19 pandemic.
We encourage students to participate in this project even if they do not plan to practice criminal law. Aside from dealing with criminal law issues, ILAP offers assistance for many civil claims and often provides law students with their first client interaction in a legal setting. The knowledge and skills learned through volunteering with ILAP will help students develop experience-based careers in the legal community.
If you are interested in joining ILAP, please come to one of our virtual training sessions, join our Canvas page, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We hope you will join us.
- Maggie Bott, Student Director
- Stephen Morris, Director of Administration
- Mounir Jamal, Director of Communications
- Kaitlin Willbanks, Lead Research Director
- Alex Dowland, Research Director
- Hannah Clarke, Research Director
- Josh Felty, Research Director
- Brian Hudson , Research Director
- Michael Froedge, Research Director
- Tori Peterson, Student Advisor