Trusts and Estates Clinic

The Clinical Law Program provides students with hands-on, professional experience in actual law practice. The program is generally the capstone of a student’s legal education at Willamette. During the first two years of law school, students learn to “think like a lawyer.” The Clinical Law Program teaches them to “be a lawyer.”

Students enrolled in the Trusts and Estates Clinic represent clients who need non-tax estate planning. Most clinic clients, whether single or married, have children who are too young to manage property themselves. Other clients have adult children, are childless, or are terminally ill or elderly.

Students in the Trusts and Estates Clinic may prepare client letters, wills, trusts, durable powers of attorney, life insurance and retirement plan beneficiary forms, advance medical directives, and other estate planning documents. Students gain experience in interviewing and counseling clients, gathering information about property ownership, drafting documents, and assisting clients in executing them.

For more information on all of our Clinical Law Programs, please view our main page and program overview.


Professor Valerie J. Vollmar teaches the Trusts and Estates Clinic. She has taught the College of Law's Trusts and Estates course since 1985 and also has taught Elder Law, Will and Trust Drafting, and Federal Estate and Gift Tax.