Sustainable farmers to get pro bono legal advice from law students

Farmers who attend the 21st annual conference of the Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture (PASA) will have the chance to get their top legal questions answered. Members of the Penn State Law Rural Economic Development Clinic will be available during the "Farming for the Future" conference being held at the Penn Stater Conference Center from Feb. 1-4 to address issues ranging from farmland leases to CSA (community-supported agriculture) membership agreements.

“Part of the clinic’s mission is to give students practical experience working with clients in agriculture and food law sectors,” said Penn State Law Professor Ross Pifer and director of the clinic. During these conference consultations, student attorneys and supervising faculty will discuss specific legal issues, and if necessary, students will perform additional legal work following the initial consultation, Pifer explained.

Supervising law faculty members are licensed Pennsylvania attorneys who work with clinic students in representing clients in a variety of legal matters including the preparation of leases for the rental of farmland and farm facilities, CSA membership agreements, farmers’ market rules, liability waivers, and sales agreements for purchasing businesses. Clinic students have also provided legal advice to clients regarding the establishment and operation of various business entity types. 

PASA conference attendees can take advantage of this opportunity by sending an email to Ross Pifer at rpifer@psu.edu with a detailed explanation of the specific legal services desired, along with background information. “We expect significant demand, so we are going to do our best to provide service to the greatest number of clients possible,” Pifer added.

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Last Updated January 18, 2012