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A group of Access to Law Initiative students

 Access to Law Initiative

Many California Western School of Law students plan to enter solo or small firm practice after graduation. In 2012, we became the first law school on the west coast to launch an incubator program to help graduates follow that career path.

The Access to Law Incubator (ALI) is a program created exclusively for graduates of California Western School of Law who intend to pursue solo practice.

The mission of ALI is to provide tools and training to empower entrepreneurial and public service minded California Western School of Law alumni to make a living while making a difference. While serving the community’s legal needs, ALI provides members with critical training and post-graduate education.

The goals of ALI are two-fold: 1) assist new solo attorneys with launching successful legal businesses; and 2) provide pro bono and affordable legal services to underserved populations within the greater San Diego community.

ALI attorneys work together in two different downtown office locations. Each attorney owns and operates an independent law practice. Currently, there are 14 active ALI members and more than 25 ALI alumni. The program is 18-months in duration with 12-months spent in-residence at one of the office locations and 6-months of maintenance support.  

ALI offers assistance in the form of practical training on subjects vital to a successful business like marketing, advertising, networking, practice management, business planning, finances, and technology. Other benefits of ALI include affordable office space, a community of other solo attorneys, and vendor resources like research and case management software.

In exchange for membership in ALI, member attorneys agrees to provide 100 hours of pro bono publico service each year by volunteering with legal service organizations, community clinics, and other nonprofits.

To be considered for the program, you must:

  • Demonstrate a strong interest in solo practice and commitment to public service and access to law
  • Possess an entrepreneurial spirit and be flexible and adaptable to change
  • Work well in intimate settings with a diverse group of individuals
  • Be a member of The State Bar of California in good standing at the start of the program (those who have taken the CA bar exam and are awaiting exam results may apply; acceptance into the program will be conditioned on passing the bar exam and being admitted to practice)
  • Have graduated from California Western School of Law in 2011 or later (the program is intended for new attorneys; however, exceptions will be considered on a case by case basis)
  • Be willing to commit 18-months to membership in ALI

Applications for the July 2016 ALI Cohort are now available and will be accepted until Sunday, May 22, 2016 at 5:00 pm. Information sessions to learn more about ALI will be held as follows:

Thursday, May 12, 2016 – 12:00 pm to 1:30 pm – 750 B Street, Suite 3300
Monday, May 16, 2016 – 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm – 600 W. Broadway, Suite 700
Wednesday, May 18, 2016 – 9:00 am to 10:30 am – 750 B Street, Suite 3300

Applications for the January 2017 ALI Cohort will be available this fall. Please check back for more information or email Anne-Marie Rábago, Director of ALI to have your name placed on the ALI interest list.

If you are interested in applying or learning more about the Access to Law Incubator, please contact Anne-Marie Rábago, Director of ALI at or (619)-525-7091.

Disclaimer: Each of the attorneys in ALI maintains an independent law practice, which is separate from each of the other lawyers and law practices in the program and from California Western School of Law. Retention of one attorney is not retention of any of the other attorneys, nor of the school.

Anne-Marie Rabago, Esq.
Director, Access to Law Incubator (ALI)
p: 619-525-7091
Anne-Marie Rábago