Investor Advocacy Clinic Welcomes Back G. Kevin Mathis

G. Kevin Mathis, Jr., joins the Investor Advocacy Clinic for its fall 2018 semester.  A graduate of the University of South Florida with a degree in Behavioral Sciences and an MBA from Saint Leo University, Kevin plans to help people resolve IP and Corporate law issues when he graduates in May 2019.

According to Kevin, he returned to the clinic because “Last semester I enjoyed helping investors who were not otherwise able to obtain legal assistance.  Many investors suffer losses at the hands of their brokers, and they aren’t always able to obtain assistance.  I want to make sure that those investors are able to get legal assistance and remedy their losses.”

My Clinic Story: Diverse and Dynamic Terrain

By Lynn Mckeel, Fall 2018 IAC Student Intern

My year in the Investor Advocacy Clinic exposed me to a wide range of topics and introduced me to Americans from many backgrounds and cultures. From working on education crossword puzzles, to helping families who were harmed, the Clinic has the opportunity to touch all aspects of American consumer life. In the Clinic we focus on four main programs, our FINRA dispute resolution matters, our partnership with the Georgia Secretary of State, educational outreach, and our blog. Each of these unwrap a wide range of dilemmas, legal analysis, and creative thinking. The Clinic prepares law students for the real world diversity of practicing law in a structure conducive to independent learning and personal responsibility. Continue reading

Brook Ptacek Returns to Investor Advocacy Clinic

Brook Ptacek joined the Investor Advocacy Clinic in fall 2018 and has returned this spring to continue her work with the Clinic.  Brook is a full time 3L. She graduated from Loyola University New Orleans with a degree in Mass Communication and French language.  Brook will graduate from Georgia State University College of Law in May 2019.

Brook joined the clinic because of her interest in fighting for others who have been wronged. She says:

“The world is made up of two kinds of people: those who help others and those who help themselves. I’m here to fight for those people who otherwise cannot fight for themselves.”

Upon graduation, Brook will be practicing complex litigation in Atlanta.

Tips on How to Tell Your Client “No”

HeLP - Juliana Mesa

By: Juliana Mesa, Fall 2018 HeLP Legal Services Clinic Intern

Prior to coming to law school, I worked at a nonprofit where I worked with clients ranging from some of the largest corporations in Atlanta, to small nonprofits which specialized on narrow issues in our community. All of my clients were very good at what they did, but all came to us because they were looking for experts in a different area they needed help with. For some of our corporate partners, this often came in questions on how to make a bigger impact in our community and how to get their employees more engaged through volunteer opportunities.

Just as in many other client-facing careers, clients come to us at the HeLP clinic because of our expertise and ability to help in a specific area, and often come with a specific goal in mind. For example, in the HeLP Clinic we might have clients that know they want help in receiving SSA disability benefits or want to get out of their lease with their landlord.

In both settings, I have had to encounter situations in which I have had to tell a client “no.” This is often an uncomfortable situation because, although we want to make our clients happy and give them the answers they want, as the experts in the field we have a duty to give them honest and correct advice, even if it is not exactly what the client envisioned.

A seemingly small example, but one which surprisingly brought up how difficult it can be to tell a client “no,” was when corporate clients wanted to put together a volunteer event for their employees by creating hundreds of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for the hungry across Atlanta.

At face value, this sounds like a great idea. This is a project where volunteers can work together in a fun environment, which often serves as a team builder, while at the same time feeding people who don’t have access to food.

Continue reading

Caitlyn Scofield Joins Investor Advocacy Clinic

Caitlyn Scofield is a student intern in the Investor Advocacy Clinic’s spring 2019 semester. Scofield completed her undergraduate at the University of Georgia where she obtained a B.S. in Political Science and a B.A. in Psychology. Scofield is excited to be a part of this clinic.  She says:

It provides a vital role in protecting and helping those investors that are unable to obtain legal services while simultaneously allowing law students to gain vital experience. This relationship helps investors gain the help they need while allowing the interns to gain the skills they need to help others.”

After graduation Scofield plans to go into commercial real estate litigation.

Investor Advocacy Clinic Welcomes Caleb Swiney

Caleb L. Swiney joins the Investor Advocacy Clinic for its spring 2019 semester. A graduate of Hampden-Sydney College with a degree in Economics and Business, Swiney plans to work in commercial law once he graduates in May 2019.

According to Swiney, he joined the clinic “To make a difference in real people’s lives. To me, the most exciting part about the legal profession has always been our ability to make a positive impact on people’s lives at a time when they need it most and, in doing so, hopefully shape businesses’ behavior by deterring them from engaging in deceptive practices.”

Investor Alert: Keep Your Hands of My Insurance Payout: SEC releases Investor Alert warning victims of Hurricane Florence and Michael

By Lynn Mckeel, Fall 2018 IAC Student Intern

The SEC’s recent Investor Alert comes in the wake of history’s most devastating hurricanes. Riding the coat tails of devastation, con artists and fraudsters are capitalizing on the chaos and destruction. Recognizing the influx of cash and the kindness and virtue of others, these fraudsters manipulate situations in order to separate people from their money. Anyone can be vulnerable to their tactics.

If you have been affected by the storm and received a lump sum insurance payout, please be hyper-vigilant with your insurance proceeds. Continue reading