Appellate Advocacy Project
The Public Justice Center's Appellate Advocacy Project provides the home for the Murnaghan Appellate Advocacy Fellow. Supervised by experienced attorneys and mentors, the Murnaghan Fellow is a key member of the appellate team.
The mission of the Appellate Advocacy Project is to influence the development of civil rights and poverty law before state and federal appellate courts. The Appellate Advocacy Project serves as a critical resource for the private bar, legal services organizations, community organizations, and a national network of poverty and civil rights advocates. With these partners, the PJC can identify cases that have the potential for accomplishing systemic change of the legal and social systems that create or permit injustice. The PJC also identifies emerging appellate issues by regularly reviewing the Maryland appellate court dockets. Once identified, the PJC is able to devote its resources and expertise to develop the appellate issues in several ways:
- participating as counsel or co-counsel with the appellate counsel or for pro se appellants;
- submitting amicus curiae (friend of the court) briefs that explain to the court the implications of the case on people living in poverty or victims of injustice that are not being adequately expressed by the parties;
- referring the case to a private law firm for briefing and/or argument;
- working with other counsel at the trial stage to guide the development of important issues for appeal; and
- offering assistance to appellate counsel through strategizing, editing appellate briefs, and mooting for appellate arguments.