COVID-19 Law Community Updates

This page provides information for the UCI Law community related to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak and will be updated as new information becomes available.

University of California and UCI Information

Law Community Updates

Below are messages that were sent specifically to the Law School community. For campus messages sent out to the larger UCI community, please visit UCI's Coronavirus Messages page.

Dear Students,

Now is a more important time than ever to be a law student. The world needs you. It needs lawyers dedicated to racial justice, a diverse and inclusive legal profession, and the public interest. It needs lawyers ready to ensure equal access to legal representation and to help communities and businesses rebuild as we emerge from the global pandemic. We’re committed to equipping you to meet these important legal needs, preparing you to be leaders for systemic improvement of our justice system, and giving you the foundations for launching successful careers as lawyers. We can’t wait to get started in the fall.

We hope you’re as eager for the fall semester as we are. We understand, however, that not knowing exactly what the fall semester will look like can cause anxiety. We’re so appreciative of your patience and understanding as UCI Law’s faculty and administration work to navigate the uncertainties of the COVID-19 pandemic and frequently changing public health directives to plan the best legal education possible for you. Although these unprecedented circumstances mean we can’t offer definitive answers to all of your questions, we’d like to give you this further update on UCI Law’s planning for the fall semester.

Law school orientation and fall classes will begin on schedule. We look forward to welcoming you and to the amazing things we’ll all do together, inside and outside of class, in the fall and beyond.

All UCI Law students who need or want to take their fall classes online will be able to do so. We know that while many of you will be on campus, some of you might not be ready to return due to the public health situation. You will be able to pursue your UCI Law education on schedule whether or not you are physically present.

UCI Law’s commitment to teaching distinguishes us from other top law schools—and that commitment extends to our online courses. What law students across the country experienced last spring was emergency remote instruction implemented on only a few days’ notice. Now, some law schools are proposing to offer an online option to students who cannot be physically present by allowing them to “Zoom in” to ordinary in-person class sessions—an approach that, in our view, does not treat those students equitably.

Our fall online courses will be different. Some of you may know that UCI’s School of Education and its Division of Teaching Excellence and Innovation are national leaders in research on online education. Drawing on their expertise, UCI Law’s Teaching and Learning Committee, chaired by Professor Jane Stoever, has developed an intensive series of workshops for UCI Law faculty to train them on research-based best practices for online teaching and learning and give them the technological skills needed for effective online courses. Since May, our faculty has been regularly attending the workshops and refining their already excellent courses for an online environment. We’re also implementing a plan to rigorously support our students’ learning by equipping them with strategies that are known to improve student success in online courses.

Law schools across the country are planning for online courses to be part of the fall semester—but we’re not aware of any law school that is devoting more time and effort than UCI Law to help ensure the highest quality online learning experience for its students.

We also want you to have the option to attend in-person activities at UCI Law this fall to the extent the public health situation allows, with an emphasis on opportunities for first-year students. We’re working intensely both internally and with various other campus units to determine what might be possible.

Although some law schools continue to make bold promises about in-person courses in the fall semester, we think we owe it to our students to take a candid and realistic approach—one that makes the health of our community the highest priority—and that is the spirit in which we offer this update. We need to be clear that all of our plans, including those presented in this update, are subject to change based on the public health situation and government and university public health guidance.

We’re currently hopeful that first-year students will have an option to take one or two of their fall courses with an in-person component. Under this plan, a class would be split into two smaller groups. Each group would have one in-person class session each week, and the other class sessions would be online with the entire class meeting together. Limiting the number of students present in a classroom at one time is intended to enable physical distancing, in accordance with public health guidance. Other first-year courses would be fully online, and we do not expect any courses to be held completely in person.

We expect all upper division class sessions to be online. UCI Law has assured all students that they may take their courses online. Because almost all upper division courses have only one section, those courses will be offered online to meet that promise.

We know some of you would like more options for in-person courses this fall. We share with you a strong longing for law school to be back in person as soon as possible. However, the health of the UCI Law community is the top priority, and the capacity of our classrooms, with physical distancing, limits what can be done consistently with public health guidance.

Beyond class sessions, the outside-of-class activities that are such an important part of the UCI Law experience will be as robust as ever. We currently expect that some of these activities will be able to take place partly in person, such as faculty office hours, faculty-led discussion groups, student organization meetings, community-building activities (such as Community Fellow meetings with first-year students), and student study groups. Any such in-person activities would be limited to enable physical distancing and follow public health guidance. The same range of activities will also be available online.

The health of the UCI Law community continues to be our highest priority. Any in-person activities must be conducted in accordance with government and campus public health guidance, which will likely include not only physical distancing, but also face coverings, use of a daily symptom self-check app, completion of an online COVID-19 training module, acknowledgement of a campus code of conduct, and possibly temperature checks upon entry to campus buildings. This means that it will not be “law school as usual”—but as caring and responsible members of the UCI Law community, we owe it to each other to take those measures seriously.

Already, UCI Law has demonstrated that we will not—and we have not—let the challenges of the day keep us from doing all that we do so well. Our commitment to teaching is stronger than ever. Our students continue to offer extensive pro bono legal services to those in need, and our legal clinics are as busy as ever helping their clients and giving our students the unparalleled practical training that UCI Law is known for. We are providing some of the nation’s leading programming on the legal aspects of the pandemic, including a COVID and the Law lecture series. Through UCI Law’s centers of excellence such as our Center on Law, Equality and Race and our Center for Biotechnology and Global Health Policy, our students, faculty, and community grapple with critical topics at the intersection of law and society. Working together, our students and faculty continue to have an important impact on law and policy.

In addition, the supportive community that is a signature of the UCI Law experience continues to thrive. Over the summer, we’ve been engaging with our admitted students through continuous online programming including Town Halls with the Dean, Law Talks by UCI Law faculty, and meetings with the Career Development Office, the Externship Office, the Public Interest Office, and other student facing departments. We’ve held virtual Happy Hours hosted by the Student Bar Association (SBA) and other student organizations. We’ll continue our wonderful Community Fellows Program, which pairs second-year and third-year students with first-year students for mentoring and social activities, as well as our Family and Friends Day that gives you an opportunity to invite your friends and loved ones to participate in a day of your life as a UCI Law student. Fun social events brought to you by SBA, student organizations, and the Student Affairs Office are also on the agenda.

We want to hear from you about your current plans for participating in the fall semester. We ask you to complete this brief survey by Monday, June 29: []

Your responses will help us as we continue our planning and move closer to the start of classes. We will also schedule a town hall to hear more from you about the fall semester. As always, if you have questions, you may contact Dr. Jennah Jones, Assistant Dean for Student Affairs and Inclusive Excellence (jjones@law.uci.edu) if you are a current student, or Cristina Gapasin Tortal, Assistant Dean for Admissions & Student Financial Services (cgapasin@law.uci.edu) if you are a new UCI Law student.

All our best,

L. Song Richardson, Dean

Christopher A. Whytock, Vice Dean

Dear students,

I am writing to provide an update on UCI Law’s Fall 2020 academic calendar.

The Fall 2020 semester will begin and end on the previously scheduled dates. Orientation for first-year law students will begin on Tuesday, August 11 and continue through Friday afternoon, August 14. Fall semester classes will begin on Monday, August 17 and the last day of exams will be Wednesday, December 16.

However, there are several changes:

  • The last day of Fall 2020 classes will be Friday, November 20 (instead of Wednesday, November 25).
  • We will not have a five-day Mid-Semester Review Week (previously scheduled for the week of October 5). Instead, there will be classes that week.
  • Five review days with no classes have been added to the Fall 2020 academic calendar: Thursday, October 15; Tuesday, November 3; and the three days before Thanksgiving (Monday, November 23; Tuesday, November 24; and Wednesday, November 25).

As you have likely heard, a growing number of campuses across the country have made similar changes in an effort to reduce spread of the COVID-19 that might result from travel to and from campuses during fall breaks and the Thanksgiving holiday. This public health concern is the primary reason for our Fall 2020 academic calendar changes.

There are other benefits, too. For the first time in UCI Law’s history, students will have no classes on election day, allowing them to fully engage in the democratic process and participate in related UCI Law activities. Students wishing to be off campus for Thanksgiving will be able to travel before the typical holiday crowds. The three new review days before Thanksgiving will give students valuable time to prepare for class review sessions and study for final exams.

Class review sessions will be held fully online on the previously scheduled days (Monday, November 30 through Thursday, December 3). Final exams will also take place as previously scheduled (December 4 to December 16) and will be administered online. With this format, students who leave campus for Thanksgiving will not need to return to campus for these review sessions or for final exams.

Due to the dynamic public health situation, UCI Law continues to engage in extensive contingency planning regarding other aspects of the Fall 2020 semester so we can be prepared for whatever scenario may face us. This planning continues to be guided by two overarching principles: the health and safety of the UCI Law community and the quality of your legal education and law school experience. We will continue to send you updates.

Fall 2020 Academic Calendar

 (No classes on days bolded.)

 

 

Previous Schedule

Revised Schedule

1L Orientation

August 11 - 14

August 11 - 14

Instruction Begins

August 17

August 17

Labor Day

September 7 (M)

September 7 (M)

Mid-Semester Review Week

October 5-9 (M-F)

N/A

Day Off

N/A

October 15 (Th)

Election Day

N/A

November 3 (T)

Veterans Day

November 11 (W)

November 11 (W)

Instruction Ends

November 25

November 20

Added Review Days (No classes)

N/A

November 23 – November 25

Review Period (Review Classes)

November 30 – December 3

November 30 – December 3

Exam Period

December 4 – December 16

December 4 – December 16

 

Yours,

Liz Schroeder

 

Elizabeth Schroeder | Assistant Dean for Student Services   

Please see the letter from Khary Hornsby providing an update to instruction for the fall 2020 semester. Read the letter (PDF) >
Please see the letter from Omri Marian, Joshua Blank, Victor Fleischer, Natascha Fastabend and D'lorah Hughes providing an update to instruction for the fall 2020 semester for students of the Graduate Tax Program. Read the letter (PDF) >
Please see the letter from Dean L. Song Richardson and Vice Dean Christopher Whytock providing an update to instruction for the fall 2020 semester. Read the letter (PDF) >

Dear 3Ls,

The question arose today about continuing GSHIP coverage after graduation.

Your current policy is in effect until September 27, 2020. Information on post-grad coverage is here: https://shc.uci.edu/insurance/uc-ship-benefits-and-information/voluntary-enrollment. Scroll down to the bottom of the page under Continuing Coverage Following Graduation.

Yours,

Liz Schroeder

Elizabeth Schroeder | Assistant Dean for Student Services

UCI Law Dean L. Song Richardson joined more than 100 alumni from every graduating class and all areas of legal practice to provide recommendations to the California Supreme Court on the California Bar Exam. Read the full letter here (PDF).

Dear UCI Law Community,

The past few weeks have been unlike anything we’ve ever experienced. I want to take a moment to express my gratitude and thanks for the remarkable efforts you have made during this challenging time. If anything, our collective response to this global pandemic leaves me even more confident in the strength of our community and our ability to overcome any obstacle.

Our creative spirit remains strong. In a matter of days, our faculty transitioned to remote teaching and our students to remote learning. Our staff and administrators now operate the law school from kitchens and living rooms. Our entire community is self-isolating.  Yet, despite our physical separation, I feel even more connected to the UCI Law community than ever before. 

The abrupt and unwelcome transition to this new normal hasn’t been easy. We’ve all had to make some difficult decisions, choices and sacrifices. Disappointment, sadness, fear, and frustration are inevitable.

Even in the face of these challenges, our care and concern for each other and for our broader community still perseveres. Remarkable acts of kindness demonstrate the strength of our culture and our public service orientation. These include our students coming together to deliver groceries to those in need, helping with humanitarian parole requests to remove individuals from immigration detention where they are more susceptible to COVID 19, and supporting legal services by delivering documents to seniors and the medically compromised who are unable to go out to get their documents signed or to pick up important legal papers.

As we continue through these uncertain times, let’s continue to show kindness, empathy and compassion to each other and to ourselves. UCI Law started as a different kind of law school, one where collegiality and care for one another defined our community. This is what must guide us now.

Let’s remember that we will always face uncertainty, change, obstacles and failure in our lives. It’s how we respond to these challenges that matters the most to our happiness and success both personally and professionally. Our response matters to the continued strength of our UCI Law community.

Finally, let’s continue to rely on the courage, grit and perseverance that define who we are at UCI Law. Remembering who we are as a community will help us emerge stronger and more resilient than we were before. For this too shall pass. It always does.

Our community matters more now than ever before. We are in this together. I am grateful for you all, and wish you continued good health.

All my best,


L. Song Richardson 
Dean | Chancellor’s Professor of Law 

Dear Faculty and Staff,

I hope this email finds everyone well.  I wanted to follow-up on the Friday, March 27th email regarding campus building closures to provide additional information for our school community. I have clarified with the Campus Executive Planning Group that effective April 3, 2020 at 9pm faculty or staff who continue to need access to the building, for safety and security reasons, must have Dean’s office approval before entering the buildings.  If you need access to your office or classroom please send a request email before you enter the building to lrehbaum@law.uci.edu with a cc: facilities@law.uci.edu with the date, purpose, location and approximate time you wish time to be in the building and I will respond with an approval for you.  Please put in the subject line – Building Access Request so I can quickly identify it and respond to you.

Faculty and staff can still access the Law and Education building with hard keys and classrooms with card keys.  Faculty can also access the MPAA building and classrooms with card key.  Staff can access the Law and Education building with hard keys.  Staff access to the MPAA building may be impacted.  Staff should check with the facilities team in advance of entering the MPAA building to check on their access.  The facilities team can make adjustments to your key card security permissions as needed.

Unit 18 lecturers do not have building keys and will be unable to access the facilities.

Students do not have access the Law, Education, or MPAA buildings.  Students cannot be in the buildings without a faculty or staff member present.  If such access is necessary, preapproval and confirmation of faculty or staff availability to be onsite must be arranged in advance.

Please be mindful of practicing social distancing if you come in contact with others.

If you have any further questions please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Thank you and stay well!

Lisa

 

Lisa Rehbaum

Chief Financial Officer

Dear students,

I want to send my personal thanks to each of you for your thoughtful comments and insightful questions as we move to CR/NC (S/U) grades in the spring 2020 semester.  We’ve put together an FAQ about CR/NC grading, attached: Spring 2020 Mandatory Credit/No Credit Policy – Frequently Asked Questions (PDF)

Please let me know if you have additional questions that were not answered in the FAQ. 

Stay healthy!

Yours,

Liz Schroeder

Elizabeth Schroeder | Assistant Dean for Student Services   

Dear Students,

We have just been informed by the Registrar’s office on main campus that official transcript requests, submitted today through March 30, will be processed and mailed on March 30.

You can print unofficial transcripts through StudentAccess. Unlike in the past, those unofficial transcripts will now include your name.  If you would also like a letter from our office explaining why the official transcript is currently unavailable, please send that request to registrar@law.uci.edu.  We will email you a letter on UCI Law letterhead explaining the current situation and the date we expect official transcripts to be made available.

We, and I’m sure the staff on main campus, thank you for your patience.

Best,

Stephanie

Stephanie M. Santoro | Registrar

Dear Students,

In our last email to you we gave you the option, if your transcript request was time sensitive, to bring the request form to Aldrich Hall in person to have your transcript printed on the spot for you. In light of recent changes, Registrar window services at Aldrich Hall are suspended until further notice and all transcripts will be mailed.
You can continue to complete the request form found here and return to registrar@law.uci.edu for processing. You can also make the request by using the main campus online request by following the links found here.  If you make the request using the online system we are unable to track the status of the request (but you do receive a status update and order number through the online request system).

At this time we have not been informed that transcript services are not available but we will update you if that changes.

Thank you!

Stephanie

Stephanie M. Santoro | Registrar

Dear Law School Community,

As I mentioned in my earlier email, Governor Newsom has issued a stay at home order which goes into effect this evening.  More guidance will be coming from main campus. In the meantime, the Law School building will be closed and everyone should work, study and/or take classes from home.

Importantly, the Law School remains operational. Classes will continue. Our administration and staff will be working and will be available by phone, email and electronically.   Meetings – such as the faculty meeting on Tuesday and committee meetings – will happen by Zoom.  I will set up a Zoom call for staff and faculty tomorrow to share what I have learned and to answer questions as best I can.  I will continue to write updates to the community when appropriate.  I also look forward to “Coffee with the Dean” via Zoom tomorrow afternoon.  

We are here for you and want to help as best we can. Please don’t hesitate to let me know if I or the Law School administration can be of help.

UCI Law IT assistance will be available from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Please email help@law.uci.edu or leave a voicemail at 949-824-1434. All assistance will be done remotely.

Here is a copy of the Governor’s order, in case you are interested in reading it: https://covid19.ca.gov/img/Executive-Order-N-33-20.pdf.

I want to thank each and every one of you for the remarkable things we have accomplished together.  I will miss seeing you in person, but look forward to continuing to build our community on-line. We are ready for this. 

With every wish for your good health,

Song

L. Song Richardson
Dean and Chancellor's Professor of Law

Dear Law School Students,

I hope you are doing well and staying healthy. We understand you are navigating many challenges during this difficult time. The Law School is fully committed to providing you with study space and access Wi-Fi for your remote learning. For those who have been using the law library I wanted to make you aware of options available to you upon the library mandatory closure tonight at 6pm. I have attached a list of Law School classroom spaces you may have access to during regular hours when classrooms are not being used by instructors to maintain remote instruction. You will also find on each door of our classrooms the class schedule when the room is in use and the maximum capacity of students that may be in the room to maintain social distancing requirements. Please do not enter the rooms when instruction is in use. You may not enter the class even if it is your regularly scheduled class in session.

For after-hours study space, you may use your key cards to access MPAA student lounge and MPAA 408, 420, and 430 after the final classes have been offered for that day. Library course reserve material will be available in the student lounge on the honor system.

Your safety and security is important.

You must following social distancing practicing when using classroom space. Please adhere to these basic guidelines:

  • Practice social distancing – maintain a six foot distance.
  • Always wash your hands with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
  • Stop touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Instead of shaking hands, find alternate ways to greet people.
  • Cover your mouth with your elbow when you cough.
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces often.
  • If you are sick, stay home and do not travel.

If you require a safety escort after hours Campus police can provide a walking CSO escort anytime between 6 PM and 1 AM - they can't give rides anymore due to social distancing. After 1 AM escort for safety would be a PD officer but they can provide an escort 24/7. Information about CSO escort can be found on their website at the following link https://police.uci.edu/cso/index.php#escorts. There is also a CSO specific FAQ at the following website https://police.uci.edu/cso/safety_escort_faq.php and anyone can call 949.814.SAFE (7233) to schedule/request an escort 24/7.

Please take care of yourselves and please don’t hesitate to reach out to me if you have any questions.
Sincerely,

Lisa Rehbaum
Chief Financial Officer
UCI School of Law
949/824-0938
lrehbaum@law.uci.edu

Hello All, 

Although our building is closed, the law library continues to offer remote services that will hopefully make the transition to remote teaching and research as seamless as possible.

For detailed, up-to-date information on the library’s Off-Campus Library Services, please consult https://libguides.law.uci.edu/coronavirus/.

Please continue to use the request@law.uci.edu email for all library related questions (such as “How do I return the books I have checked out?”  “Do students have access to course reserves?”).

While operating remotely, we will continue:

  • Reference and research services via request@law.uci.edu
    • Please understand there will be a slower turnaround time
    • All work product will be delivered electronically via S: drive, Dropbox, or attachments
  • Library collection purchases
  • Guest teaching conducted online via Zoom
  • RA training sessions conducted online via Zoom

Unfortunately, we are unable to provide:

  • Access to the library’s print collection
  • Interlibrary loan
  • Document delivery of print materials

Please don’t hesitate to contact me with questions.

 

Best,

Jessica

Jessica Wimer
Associate Dean of the Law Library | Research Professor of Law

FAQ for International Students and Scholars

The International Center has published an FAQ to address travel, visa and other questions coming into the center.

Dear Law School Community,

Starting tomorrow the campus will be temporarily suspending direct pickup and delivery of mail to our School.  Our facilities team, Garth and Jimmy will be making runs to the North Campus mail processing center on Mondays and Thursday at 10am to drop-off mail and pickup mail for distribution.  If demand requires additional runs we will adjust the schedule accordingly.

Cynthia at the front desk remains available for receiving UPS and FedEx deliveries and will continue mail distribution received from North Campus pickups.

If you have any questions please let me know.

Thank you and stay well!

Lisa

Lisa Rehbaum

Chief Financial Officer

Dear Students,

Although our building is closed, the law library staff continues to be available to you and committed to your success.

Remote Library Services:  For detailed, up-to-date information on the services we offer, please consult https://libguides.law.uci.edu/coronavirus/.

Research and Reference help:  We are happy to set up Zoom consultations Monday thru Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Contact us at refdesk@law.uci.edu. We are available to help you locate available library materials and assist you with your research.

Access to library resources: Use the Law School’s VPN to access to our vast digital collection. We apologize, but we are unable to provide interlibrary loan or access to our print collection.

Course Reserves: Print course reserves will be available in the MPAA student lounge after 6pm this evening. Please use the books in MPAA and return them to the cart when you have finished.

Many course reserve books are also available online. Each publisher has their own approach, and we are working on a comprehensive list with links. For now:

  • West Academic and Foundation Press titles: call for access (877) 888-1330
  • Wolters Kluwer and Carolina Academic Press titles: look out for access coming soon
  • Other titles: check the Google Sheet we are updating as we arrange for access: docs.google.com/spreadsheets

Items you’ve checked out:  Please contact Jeff Latta, Access Services Manager, at jlatta@law.uci.edu, to discuss your options.

Please contact us if you have questions. 

Jessica Wimer
Associate Dean of the Law Library | Research Professor of Law

Dear UCI Law Students,

It is with tremendous disappointment I tell you that the University closed all libraries, including the law library, effective today at 6:00 p.m.  The amazing law library staff has been fully committed to providing you with a space to study and attend classes, and we remain committed to your success and well-being.  

We are working to identify other spaces, including at the law school, that might be available for you. In the meantime, I will send out an email shortly that updates you on library resources and research assistance that is available to you remotely.

During these unprecedented and challenging times, the UCI Law faculty, administrators, and staff, are working all day, every day, to support you as the situation evolves. Please take good care and reach out to me with questions.

All my best,

Jessica

Jessica Wimer
Associate Dean of the Law Library | Research Professor of Law

Dear Law School Community,

I would like to make you aware of the following options for your phone continuity.

  1. Retrieving voicemails from your work desk phone remotely:
    Dial 949/824-8989 – you will be prompted for your desk phone #  - enter  your extension as follows  x4XXXX then enter your passcode.

  2. You can submit a request to Jimmy  - facilities@law.uci.edu to request your voicemail be sent to your email.  Please note that OIT is currently backlogged and are asking for your patience while they process everyone’s requests.  In the meantime they recommend you indicate on your outgoing phone message that you are working remotely and provide your email address in the message.  You should also check your voicemail mailbox periodically for messages.  You can change your outgoing message by following the steps above and then following the system prompts.  Select 3 for phone manager and then select 6 to record your new out of office message.

  3. You can forward your desk phone to your cell phone.  Be advised that if you do this you must initiate this from your office desk phone and to deactivate the function you also must be at your desk phone.  If you are interested in this option but are not able to go to your office to do this yourself, you can email facilities@law.uci.edu and Jimmy or Garth can assist you.

    To forward your extension to your cell phone, the user will need to do the following to activate it:

    *23 # 9 (area code and phone number) #

    To deactivate the call forward function:

    # 23 #

    Please note, they do not need to pick up the receiver to activate or deactivate this function.

If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to reach out to our facilities team or to me.

Thank you,

Lisa

Lisa Rehbaum
Chief Financial Officer
UCI School of Law
949/824-0938
lrehbaum@law.uci.edu

Greetings,

On behalf of Provost Michael T. Brown I am transmitting the attached letter regarding temporary amendment to University of California Residency Policy.

Best,
Nasreen

____________________________

Nasreen B. Zia, M.P.A  | Director of Student Financial Services

Dear students,

I’ve had some inquiries from students about the July bar exam.  The State Bar just sent the following information to the Law School, which I am forwarding to you.

Stay healthy!

Liz Schroeder

PREPARING FOR THE JULY 2020 BAR EXAM

Quick Facts

Please note: Until further notice, the June First-Year Law Students' Exam and the July Bar Exam are proceeding as planned. The State Bar is closely monitoring the evolving COVID-19 guidelines and has posted a webpage for all related updates. Admission staff will alert you if there any changes, and they will be posted on the COVID-19 Updates page and the Admissions home page

Here are some of the quick facts that students will see in their Applicant Portal when they register for the July 2020 bar exam taking place on July 28–29. Registration is already open, and the timely filing deadline is April 1. Students registering between April 2 and April 30 will be subject to a $50 late fee, while students registering between May 1 and June 1 will be subject to a $250 late fee. After 11:59 p.m. on June 1, no applications will be accepted. 
 
Immediate repeaters will be able to access the registration application on May 8 at 6:30 p.m., 30 minutes after results from the February exam are released. They may register timely until May 26, and can still register until June 1, though they will be subject to a $50 late fee.
 
Please encourage your students to register as soon as possible to avoid any unexpected circumstance that could prevent them from completing their registration by the deadline.

Strategies and Stories Program Available for July Bar Exam Registrants

The California Bar Exam Strategies and Stories Program showed promising results in its first test during the July 2018 bar exam, but the sample size was small. We are awaiting analysis of results from the July 2019 administration of the program. Now, an enhanced version of the program will be available at no charge for those taking the July 2020 bar exam. Students will see the option to sign up when registering for the bar exam between March 1 and June 1, or they can register later by using one of the reminder emails that will be sent to applicants. While students will be able to register for the Bar Exam Strategies and Stories program until June 7, students must register for the July 2020 bar exam no later than June 1.

The program is delivered online and takes about one hour to complete. It includes an introductory film, stories from prior test takers, and a writing activity in which participants share insights and strategies that may be useful to them and future test takers. The content is tailored based on whether a student is taking the exam for the first time or repeating it.

This program is not a substitute for bar preparation programs, but it complements traditional bar preparation by helping applicants maintain a productive mindset and envision the possibility for success.

Students Should Apply Now for Testing Accommodations 

It's not too early for your students to apply for testing accommodations. The application for testing accommodations is submitted and processed separately from the bar exam application, and can be submitted up to two years before the exam as long as the student is registered as a law student with the State Bar/Committee of Bar Examiners on the Applicant Portal.
 
All applications for testing accommodations are evaluated and determined on a case-by-case basis in the order received in a complete status. Particularly for students with permanent disabilities, filing and obtaining a decision early provides peace of mind in knowing which accommodations are in place. Initial processing of the application generally takes about 60 days, but could take longer if the student is asked to provide additional information and/or if the file requires review by one or more outside consultants retained by the State Bar/Committee.

The Office of Admissions typically receives a high volume of applications at or near the final filing deadline. By waiting until the last minute to file, students take the risk of not being able to exhaust all administrative remedies before the exam, including appealing an adverse decision. More information about testing accommodations.

Southern California Locations

As we previously informed you, the San Diego location formerly used for bar exam laptop applicants was not a viable option for the July 2020 bar exam. State Bar staff explored other San Diego-area options, but were unable to find an appropriate alternative. As a result, the closest sites available for laptop applicants who would otherwise have taken the exam in San Diego are as follows:

Palm Springs Convention Center
277 N Avenida Caballeros, Palm Springs

Anaheim Convention Center
800 W. Katella Avenue, Anaheim

Pasadena Convention Center
300 East Green Street, Pasadena

Ontario Convention Center
2000 Convention Center Way, Ontario

We are still hosting a testing accommodations site at the Sheraton Mission Valley, 1433 Camino Del Rio South, San Diego. While this is the situation for the July 2020 exam, we do hope to return San Diego to the test center list for laptop applicants for future examinations. 

Dear Students,

We are doing our best to provide you with access to the law school library and classrooms so you can participate in your classes.  We are also strongly encouraging you to follow recommended guidelines on social distancing and working remotely.  Some of you may be coming to the law school because you do not have access to WiFi at home, and are balancing many competing financial priorities.

The law school has pulled together what we know to be current free or low cost internet options for you to consider.  In case Orange County follows the path we’re seeing nationwide of being told to shelter in place, we encourage you to secure access to WiFI as soon as possible.  https://www.law.uci.edu/portals/low-cost-internet.html

For those who have concerns about the costs associated with remote access, please contact Nasreen Zia,  Director of Student Financial Services, to determine what resources might be available. nzia@law.uci.edu, (949)824-0516

Jessica Wimer
Associate Dean of the Law Library | Research Professor of Law

Elizabeth Schroeder
Assistant Dean for Student Services

As you work through cancelling your travel arrangements a UC Irvine trip cancellation form has been created solely for UCI business trips that have been cancelled under the Travel Policy Amendment COVID-19.

Below are the guidelines on how the School of Law will be handling all applicable travel cancellations due to COVID-19. The UC Irvine trip cancellation form is solely to be used for UCI business trips that have been cancelled due to COVID-19 (Domestic and International).

  • Complete the travel reimbursement to the best of your ability. If you are unclear on how to answer a particular question, please leave it blank and Finance will complete the question.
  • Email the completed form to finance@law.uci.edu
  • Once the document has been received, the Finance unit will sign the document and submit it to Risk Services along with all of the appropriate backup documentation.

Please keep in mind that even if travel was canceled but a CTS or Corporate Card was used to make the travel arrangements it is still necessary to process the reimbursement through KFS. All CTS and Corporate Card charges need to be cleared. In order for the Dean’s office to accurately capture all of these expenses, it is imperative that you input Project Code COVID-19 when submitting a reimbursement for a cancelled trip due to the COVID-19. 

If you have questions please email finance@law.uci.edu.

Dear Law Student:

The Law School’s Student Financial Services team, with guidance from the Department of Education, is working to address concerns from those directly or indirectly affected by COVID-19.  We have prepared this FAQ to answer some of the most frequently asked questions and will continue to update this document as new information is received.

I have questions for Student Financial Services. Can I make an appointment?

SFS will remain open for in-person appointments through Friday March 20.  However, for everyone’s safety, appointments will adhere to social distancing guidelines. Starting Monday, March 23, SFS will be closed to in-person visitors but transition to Zoom or phone appointments. You can reach us via email to finaid@law.uci.edu.

How can I submit a required document?

Required documents must be scanned and emailed to finaid@law.uci.edu.  If you do not have access to a scanner, please email us to determine a suitable alternative. Please redact social security and account numbers.

What if I currently live on-campus, but will live off-campus the remainder of the semester?

If you decide to leave on-campus housing, you will need to terminate your lease and move out by your lease termination date. Billing will stop on the day you return your keys and have everything out of the unit following that date. If you currently have a housing guarantee, it will be intact when you return. Student Housing will do its best to provide you an assignment consistent with your current unit type (i.e. studio, one, two or three bedroom) and move-in date closest to your return. You should make the choice you believe will best allow you to maximize risk reduction.

Please keep our office informed. We will adjust your budget and revise your financial aid offer for additional federal loans to help you with your relocation expenses. It is important that students who leave campus to update their local mailing address with the Registrar’s Office.

What if I have extra expenses caused by COVID-19?

Our office can evaluate your circumstances and may increase your budget to cover illness-related expenses with remaining loan eligibility. To initiate an appeal and wish to have additional expenses added to your budget you must complete UCI Budget Increase Forms (PDF) and provide original receipts of your additional expenses directly t0 Student Financial Services by mid-April.

What happens if I withdraw?

If you withdraw, Student Financial Services is required to perform a calculation to determine if financial aid you received for the term must be returned based on the number of days of the term you attended.  So long as you are participating in classes remotely, you are still considered a student. The later in the term that you withdraw, the more of your financial aid will be considered “earned.” You can find additional information at UCI Registrar page under Withdrawal Policy.

Please contact us at finaid@law.uci.edu for any additional questions or concerns. Assistant Director Jennifer Terrazas and I are here to help you.

Best,

Nasreen

Nasreen B. Zia, M.P.A| Director of Student Financial Services

Dear UCI Law Community:

We know that these are unsettling times. We wanted to reach out to you as soon as possible to follow up on Chancellor Gillman's March 10, 2020 email to the UCI Community regarding COVID-19 and Academic and Operational Activity. As Chancellor Gillman’s message indicates, there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 within the UCI community at this time, and the UCI campus remains open.

Your health and safety is of paramount importance. As a precaution, by Monday, March 16, all law school class sessions will be held remotely until further notice. 

To ensure a coordinated and effective transition to remote instruction, we will begin phasing in remote instruction immediately, beginning this Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. If any of your courses are part of this phase-in, your instructor will notify you right away with detailed instructions.

For courses meeting in person this week, it is essential that you stay home if you have symptoms of illness, including fever or symptoms of respiratory illness, such as a cough, difficulty breathing, or shortness of breath, or if you have reason to believe that you have been exposed to COVID-19.

You will not be penalized if you miss class this week. As many courses as possible are being recorded, and as previously indicated, instructors understand the need to be flexible with attendance policies.

If you are a student, who does not have access to either a computer and/or the internet, please contact Dr. Jennah Jones at jjones@law.uci.edu.

Although the law school is implementing remote instruction, the campus remains open, and courses will continue, with final exams administered on a take-home or other appropriate basis, and grades submitted according to the normal schedule.

In response to student questions, we reached out to campus housing. We were assured that graduate students are welcome to stay in their campus homes. Housing will send additional information to residents.

We are committed to maintaining our daily operations, completing the semester, and ensuring that all students can fulfill their academic requirements.

For more information, campus has established the UCI Coronavirus (COVID-19) Response Center. Students, staff, faculty, parents, and community partners may email covid19@uci.edu to or visit the website: https://ehs.uci.edu/PublicHealth/coronavirus.html.

We will provide additional information as we implement the transition to remote instruction. We appreciate everybody’s understanding through these challenging times.

L. Song Richardson
Dean and Chancellor's Professor of Law

Chris Whytock
Vice Dean and Professor of Law