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How to Become a Business Law and Innovation (BLI) or Entrepreneurship and Community Development (ECD) Clinic Client

Who can become a client?

Missouri or Illinois residents, nonprofits, or for-profits that need legal assistance in the BLI or ECD Clinics’ practice areas may complete the Prospective Client Intake Form to request such assistance.

Clients are selected considering a variety of factors, including the Clinics’ current capacity, the suitability of the matter for student educational purposes, the applicant’s available resources and access to market-rate legal services (including the applicant’s income and family size), timing needs, and the applicant’s potential community impact. The Clinics’ services are best suited for applicants who have developed clear ideas, goals and plans for their ventures (for example, as evidenced by a viable business plan or other written document).

Generally, the BLI and ECD Clinics do not litigate in a court of law, provide bankruptcy services, provide advice concerning securities law or tax law compliance, or provide patent prosecution. Also, the Clinics do not field quick questions or accept walk-ins.

How do I become a client?

Contact the BLI or ECD Clinic by completing the Prospective Client Intake Form. If you do not have internet access, please call (314) 977-2778 to request that a student call you back to complete the form by phone.

Your request will be evaluated based on a number of criteria, and someone from the BLI or ECD Clinic may contact you for more information about your needs. The information provided in the Prospective Client Intake Form is needed to help make a preliminary evaluation concerning whether the BLI or ECD Clinic can assist you. Importantly, completing the form does not create any attorney-client relationship. It is merely a request for free legal services.

If the BLI or ECD Clinic believes it may be able to offer you legal services, you will be contacted to set up an intake interview. If the BLI or ECD Clinic is able to offer you legal assistance, any agreement to provide legal services will be set out in an engagement letter.

The BLI and ECD Clinics serve the majority of their clients during the academic year (mid-August through December and January through early May). However, requests for representation are accepted on a rolling basis throughout the year. The Clinics generally add new clients at the beginning of each semester (August and January).

How much does it cost?

The BLI and ECD Clinics provide legal services to clients free of charge. However, clients are responsible for paying all third-party costs associated with the representation (e.g., filing fees, application fees, appraisals).