Stetson University College of Law opened a new Veterans Law Institute May 31 in Gulfport.
The institute will serve the growing population of active duty military, veterans, and their families in the Tampa Bay area, home to one of the largest concentrations of veterans in the United States.
The institute’s Veterans Advocacy Clinic will provide representation to veterans seeking government benefits as well as those appealing decisions denying benefits. The institute will also work in partnership with other organizations, including Legal Assistance for Warriors, to provide pro bono legal services for active duty personnel and their families.
“Stetson’s Veterans Law Institute will be an important part of our nation’s efforts to carry out President Lincoln’s command that we all should care for those who have borne the battle,” said Professor Michael Allen, the institute’s director, who also spearheaded an internship program for Stetson students in Washington, D.C., at the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims.
“It will be a unique institution in American law schools in its comprehensive scope,” Professor Allen said. “Not only will the institute provide legal services to veterans seeking the benefits to which they are entitled, it will also serve as a think tank on policy issues related to veterans.”
The institute will also develop and sponsor programs, including continuing legal education programs for attorneys representing veterans, seminars for veterans and members of the military, and academic conferences focused on veterans and military issues.