William and Mary Law School’s Katheryn Maldonado and Nick Armah won the 2020-2021 ABA Law Student Division Client Counseling Competition—held this year via Zoom.
About the Client Counseling Competition
The Client Counseling competition addresses fundamental skills necessary for all successful attorneys, namely the ability to interview, counsel, and support a client through their legal issue. Competitors conduct an initial interview with a person playing the role of the client and then address both the client’s legal and non-legal needs. Students are called on to explain various aspects of the attorney-client relationship, build rapport, determine client goals, and consider applicable law and options that may be available to the client.
Please contact Competitions with any questions.
2021-2022 Registration Information
The ABA Law Student Division Client Counseling Competition Registration is now open!
These practical skills competitions offer students an opportunity to hone the skills that students will use as a practitioner through intraschool, regional, and national competitions.
All regional and national competitions for 2021-2022 will be held remotely.
Entry and Fee Payment Deadline
November 1, 2021
2021-2022 Topic: TBD
First Team: $200
Second Team: $175
Third Team: $175 (if space is available)
*All schools may register up to two teams before the registration deadline and may request a third team that will be allowed where space is available. Notices about which requested third teams will be able to compete will be sent out mid to late November. The registration fee for each approved third team will be due within one week of receiving the notification.
2021-2022 Host Schools: TBD
Client Counseling Problems and Final Round Recordings
Recent problems and final round recordings are also now available at no cost. These resources may be downloaded and shared within your school for educational purposes. Downloadable and viewing links can be found here.
Client Counseling Competition Finalists
- 2020-2021 winners and results
- 2019-2020 winners and results
- 2018-2019 winners and results
- 2017-2018 winners and results
- 2016-2017 winners and results
- 2015-2016 winners and results
Competition Rules and Guidelines
- 2020-2021 Client Counseling Virtual Rules and Host School Instructions
- 2020-2021 Client Counseling Host School Instructions
- Summary of 2020-2021 Major Rule Changes
- 2020-2021 Client Counseling Competition Rules
- Membership Requirements
- 2019-2020 Client Counseling Rules
- 2019-2020 Client Counseling Host School Instructions
- CCC Host School Checklists to Run a Successful Competition
- CCC Host School Sample Communications to Competitors, Judges and Clients
- Instructions for Judging
- Instructions for Clients
- CCC Score Tabulation Sheet (excel)
- Judge and Client Grids (excel)
Regional Host School Rotation
The Client Counseling Competition depends on law schools to host the regional competitions. To create a fair rotation of this responsibility we have created the Host Rotation Schedule and assigned participating schools to upcoming years. Please review this rotation to see when your school is assigned to host. If you cannot host in the year assigned, please contact
*Schools listed in the rotation schedule are not confirmed hosts. Please see the 2020-21 Client Counseling Dates and Locations for this year’s host schools.
Each school will receive official notification of its regional assignment in early October. The Law Student Division will use its best efforts to assign each school to its first or second choice. For 2021-2022, all regionals this year will be held virtually, the usual states assigned to each region will not apply. Preference will be given to teams based on a geographic proximity and a shared time zone with their requested host school.
If the number of teams registered for a particular region does not equal a multiple of four, the ABA Law Student Division reserves the right to move schools to a different region.
Competition Format & Team Composition
A team consists of three JD candidates attending the same ABA-approved law school. The regional competition consists of three qualifying rounds with each team competing indirectly against one or two other teams in each round. The teams are presented with a different client matter in each round. After the qualifying rounds, the top six teams advance to the semifinal round, culminating with the three winning teams in the final round.