Pro Bono Service FAQs

What does pro bono mean?

pro bono publico is a Latin phrase that means “for the public good.” Pro bono publico service connotes service by professionals who use specialized skills to provide essential services to those who are unable to afford such services.

Why does Campbell Law encourage students to complete 50 hours of pro bono legal service, pro bono law-related public service, and community service before graduation?

The North Carolina State Bar urges attorneys licensed in North Carolina to perform at least 50 hours of pro bono legal services each year. Campbell Law encourages students to perform 50 hours of pro bono legal and law-related public services, as well as community service, before graduation to inculcate a culture of public service and fulfill Campbell Law’s mission of “developing lawyers who possess moral conviction, social compassion, and professional competence, and who view the practice of law as a calling to serve others and to create a more just society.”

What qualifies as pro bono work at Campbell Law?

You may count hours performing pro bono legal service, pro bono law-related public service, and community service. Notably, you may only count up to 15 hours of community service toward your total pro bono hours.

The following criteria must be met for a student’s work to qualify as pro bono legal or pro bono law-related service:

1.       The activity must be law related. Law-related means the activity will require the law student’s utilization of legal understanding in performing the activity.

2.       The activity of the law student must be supervised and/or approved by an attorney. At a minimum, the attorney must review the student’s work product.

3.       The law-related services must be provided for free or at a substantially reduced rate (whether reduced rate work will qualify as pro bono may depend on several factors, including the actual rate being charged the client, whether the attorney would normally bill for work performed by students, the economic factors preventing the client from obtaining full-rate services, and the population affected by the legal issues involved).

4.       The law-related activities must be on behalf of:

a. person(s) of limited financial means; or
b. person(s) with limited access to legal services; or
c. nonprofit, civic, community, religious, or governmental organizations.

5.       The following precludes the activity from qualifying as pro bono legal or pro bono law-related service:

a. Receiving class credit for the activity (except for excess internship or externship hours)
b. Receiving monetary compensation for the activity
c. Work done on law journals
d. Work resulting in submission of writing into competition or other journals
e. Work on law related symposiums, conferences, and panel discussions
f. Any and all fund-raising activities

How do I find pro bono opportunities?

You can find a list of current opportunities on the Pro Bono Opportunities page.

Why should I report my pro bono service hours?

It is important to report your pro bono hours so that you may receive credit toward any award or recognition criteria set by Campbell Law, the North Carolina State Bar, the North Carolina Bar Association, and other organizations. Further, recording your pro bono hours helps the Office of Student Life and Pro Bono Opportunities and the Pro Bono Council collect data on Campbell Law student pro bono work and identify areas for project improvement or new pro bono opportunities and highlight the extent of pro bono activity at Campbell Law to promote a culture of pro bono activity.

How do I report my pro bono hours?

You can report your pro bono hours using Symplicity. Your login information will be the same login information you use to access your career services on Symplicity. Once logged in, look for the pro bono tab to record your hours.

Report pro bono service hours

Are my community service hours tracked differently?

No. All community service hours and pro bono hours should be logged in Symplicity. You will have the option within Symplicity to denote whether certain hours are community service hours.