Subject offered Semester 2 in 2024
What is the NDIS and Disability Benefits Clinic?
The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and Disability Benefits Clinic will provide students with the opportunity to undertake advice and representation work for people with disabilities, their families and carers. Students will engage one-to-one with clients and conduct legal research for partner organisations that are doing systemic advocacy work. Students will be engaged in all aspects of the Clinic’s operation and will work under the guidance and supervision of the Clinic Supervisor to provide information and resolve issues presented by clients.
What will I learn?
The NDIS and Disability Benefits Clinic will enhance students’ understanding of the NDIS Act and other disability benefits related law and practice. Students will also develop fundamental legal skills of general application such as client interviewing, file and practice management, research and writing and public engagement. Examples of matters that may be dealt with by the NDIS and Disability Benefits Clinic include: NDIS eligibility, managing NDIS plans, appealing decisions under the NDIS, and legal issues related to disability support pensions.
What will I do?
Students will be involved in all aspects of the Clinic’s work. An intensive orientation will be held in the week before the start of semester. Much of the substantive course content will then be covered in the first few weeks of semester, preparing students to commence and focus on clinic activities as soon as possible, with further lectures and guest speakers in later weeks as appropriate. Students will be required to attend a weekly seminar for group discussion of the week’s topic/s, practical skills-building exercises and legal supervision of clinical work. Students will also take part in individual supervision and debrief sessions with an MLS academic and the Clinic Supervisor, where students will evaluate their progress and discuss their reflections on the law in practice and their own role.
Where will this take me?
This subject will give you unique practical legal training. You will have the opportunity to engage in client interaction and partner engagement. These are skills that are essential for practising lawyers and are highly valued by employers. It will also give you specialised knowledge of the NDIS and disability benefits in Australia, which is an area of high priority for many Community Legal Centres across Australia. This knowledge and expertise will make students competitive candidates for employment in both public and private legal practices.
How do I apply?
Melbourne Law School Clinics recommend that students interested in the NDIS and Disability Benefits Clinic attend one of our information sessions aimed at providing key information and answering any questions students may have about the subject.
Information sessions and application details will be announced on the Canvas LMS JD Community.