Legal Internship

Deakin’s Legal Internship enables Bachelor of Laws students to gain an appreciation of certain aspects of legal practice and to extend and deepen their theoretical knowledge and critical thinking skills while working in a legal environment.

During your legal placement you will receive instruction in the following areas of legal practice: taking instructions and client interviewing; fact finding; alternative dispute resolution and negotiation; providing advice and counselling of a legal nature; legal research and problem solving; the litigation process; advocacy.

At the successful completion of Legal Internship you will gain 1 credit point towards your degree. This elective unit allows you to gain first-hand experience in a legal environment.

What is Legal Internship?

Selection criteria

Please note cross-institutional students are ineligible to apply.

Applicants are required to:

  • Ensure you are available throughout the entire Trimester on the days required by the host
  • Have successfully completed or completing 16 units of their law/combined degree.
  • Provide a maximum of 500 words outlining your preferred Legal area of interest.
  • Provide an up-to-date statement of results and resume including all current and past professional experience placements and employment.

Please give careful consideration to your application, as there are limited places available.

Please note: The host organisation may require an interview prior to final offer being made.

How to apply

Expressions of Interest for the Trimester 3 are now open and will close at 5pm on Tuesday 4 September 2018.

Apply now

Compulsory induction session and enrolment details

If you are offered a Legal Internship placement you will be required to attend a one day compulsory induction session prior to you enrolling and commencing MLL351 Legal Internship. On completion of the induction you will receive enrolment instructions.

The induction session covers area such as: duty of confidentiality, interviewing diverse clients, working with interpreters, how to write file notes, how to draft letters etc. You will hear from past students and be given assessment information. Additionally you will be given information about enrolment on completion of this compulsory session.

The compulsory induction session is held at Deakin Downtown -  Level 12, Tower 2, 727 Collins Street, Melbourne,  towards the end of each Trimester.

Participating centres

Participating Centres LocationDays
AED Legal Centre  Melbourne1+ days per week
Ann Valos Criminal Lawyer Werribee and Abbotsford1+ days per week
Barwon Community Legal Service Inc. Geelong1+ days per week
Brimbank Melton Community Legal Centre St Albans and Melton 1+ days per week
Daimler (best known as Mercedes Benz)Mulgrave1+ days per week
Department of Health and Human Services  Geelong1+ days per week or block during trimester break
Disability Discrimination Legal ServiceMelbourne1+ days per week
Etihad Stadium Melbourne1 day per week for 30 days
Australian Building and Construction Commission Melbourne -  (Pre-req MLL342 Workplace Law) 1+ days per week
Goulburn Valley Community Legal Centre Shepparton 3-week block placement
Inside Access Mental Health  Melbourne (working with imprisoned persons) 1+ days 3 days per week (for 5 weeks)
JobWatch Melbourne 1+ days per week
Kimberley Community Legal Services Inc. Kunnunnara and Broome, WABlock placement
Moonee Valley CLC Legal Service  Ascot Vale 1+ days per week
Northern Community Legal CentreGladstone Park1+ days per week (usually Mondays)
Peninsula Community Legal Centre Frankston 1+ days per week
Social Security Rights Victoria Fitzroy 1+ days per week
St Kilda Legal Service St. Kilda1+ days per week
Victoria Legal Aid: Ringwood Ringwood 1 day per week
Villamanta Disability Legal Rights Service Geelong 2 days per week
West Heidleberg Community Legal Centre West Heidleberg 1+ days per week
Women's Legal Service Victoria and Family Law Legal Service  Melbourne (Pre-req MLL408 Family Law) 1+ days per week
Yarra Trams Melbourne 1+ days per week
Youth Law Melbourne 1+ days per week
Young Workers Centre - Victorian Trades Hall Council Carlton (Pre-req MLL342 Workplace Law or MLC309 Employment Law) 1-2 days per week

Please note: Not all centres participate in all trimesters.

Legal Internship Induction dates

Student profile

I found myself interacting with a lot more clients than I expected; completing initial intakes, making appointments, as well as sitting in on a number of interviews (including ones with translators and a woman who was completely deaf.)

I was given a couple of cases that were mine to manage with supervision. I was able to do the research, letter writing and provide advice. I assisted in court on the Centre's duty lawyer day, primarily in Seymour with IVO lists and even waited at the GV Public Hospital for 4 hours with a client as a representative of the Centre trying to get him admitted!

I know metropolitan centres seem more appealing, however after my experience at Goulburn Valley I honestly believe that you can gain more experience from a regional centre where you deal with a much wider variety of clients.

Goulburn Valley is a particularly disadvantaged area, and for a Centre that's supposed to focus only on advice there was a lot of case work - especially with criminal matters that VLA couldn't work and for immigrants who have trouble navigating the legal system.

One of the cases I worked was actually three separate matters against superannuation companies which is not something you would usually see worked at a CLC.

I believe it would be incredibly beneficial to students if there was the possibility of expanding our ties with regional and rural community centres, especially as they are the ones most in need of lawyers and the ones, in my opinion, who seem to be more willing to train graduate lawyers. There willingness to take on and train students was evident by the number of students in attendance.

The lawyers there were incredible and very accessible and were always up for a chat explaining what was going on or to outline future plans.

I would highly recommend to other students from the area if they wanted to do Law Clinic! (now called Legal Internship).

Christine Mellino
Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Laws

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