Wendy Kaplan

Clinical Professor of Law

AB with distinction, Mount Holyoke College
JD, Boston College

Areas of Interest
Criminal Law & Procedure
Contact
Biography

Wendy Kaplan began her career at Boston University School of Law in the Criminal Justice Clinic in 1977, and became a clinical associate professor in 1988. Her primary clinical work involves the education, training and case supervision of third-year law students who represent defendants in criminal and delinquency trials. Her clinical teaching examines criminal law, criminal procedure, professional responsibility and trial advocacy. “In the Clinic, student defenders build upon the legal knowledge they’ve acquired in traditional courses and apply that learning to the development of a defense strategy in each of their cases,” she explains.

Many of the clients that Professor Kaplan’s students defend are juveniles, and this experience, she says, gives students important insight into the sociological issues affecting youthful offenders in the criminal justice system. “Students learn to appreciate how school and family issues affect juvenile cases, and they learn about the many responsibilities that accompany client representation.”

Professor Kaplan’s interest in juvenile justice has led her to teach a seminar on juvenile delinquency that explores the historical and legal foundations for our juvenile system. Students investigate policy changes regarding the treatment of delinquent children that have evolved since the establishment of the first juvenile court.

Professor Kaplan is a member of the Disproportionate Minority Contact subcommittee of the state’s Juvenile Justice Advisory Committee and a member of the Board of Directors of Suffolk Lawyers for Justice, Inc., a non-profit organization providing legal services to indigent criminal defendants. She is a former Massachusetts Bar Association delegate-at-large member of the Board of Delegates, as well as former chair of the Access to Justice section. Professor Kaplan is also a faculty member for the Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education and the Committee for Public Counsel Services’ zealous advocacy training program.

Publications
  1. Wendy Kaplan & Mark Rapisarda, "Juvenile Competency and Pretrial Due Process: A Call for Greater Protections in Massachusetts for Juveniles Residing in Procedural Purgatory," 67 no.4 Juvenile & Family Court Journal 5 (Dec 2016).
  2. Wendy Kaplan & Howard Friedman, "Civil Consequences of Criminal Cases," in Massachusetts Criminal Practice Chapter 43, 4th ed., Eric D. Blumenson & Arthur B. Leavens, eds., Eric Blumenson (2012). Publisher
  3. Wendy Kaplan & J. W. Carney Jr., "Dispositions and Sentencing Advocacy," in Massachusetts Criminal Practice Chapter 39, 4th ed., Eric D. Blumenson & Arthur B. Leavens, eds., Eric Blumenson (2012). Publisher
  4. Wendy Kaplan & David Rossman, "Called 'Out' at Home: The One Strike Eviction Policy and Juvenile Court," in Symposium Our Youth at a Crossroad: The Collateral Consequences of Juvenile Adjudication, 3 Duke Forum for Law and Social Change 109 (2011).
    Publisher
  5. Wendy Kaplan, "Revisiting Dispositions and Sentencing Advocacy in the Massachusetts District Courts," 92 Massachusetts Law Review 65 (2009).
    HeinOnline (BU) | HeinOnline
  6. Wendy Kaplan, "Sentencing Advocacy in the Massachusetts District Courts," 80 Massachusetts Law Review 22 (1995).
    HeinOnline (BU) | HeinOnline
Courses

8 credits

THIS CLASS IS RESTRICTED to students who have formally applied to and been accepted to the Criminal Law Clinical Program. Criminal Trial Practice II is for students in their second semester of the Program and who have been assigned to the Defender section. Students represent indigent defendants charged with criminal offenses in either the Boston Municipal Court or the Boston Juvenile Court. Students gain exposure to lawyering experiences such as investigation, interviewing, counseling and trial advocacy with a primary emphasis on the development of trial skills. Students spend the first part of the semester acting as defense counsel in misdemeanor cases of increasing complexity. Later in the semester, representation in felony cases is possible, as well as exposure to a number of other aspects of the criminal justice system. Students must be available to be in court two days a week, from Monday through Thursday. NOTE: The Criminal Clinical Program satisfies the upper-class professional skills requirement and counts towards the 6 credit Experiential Learning requirement. GRADING NOTICE: This course does not offer the CR/NC/H option.

SPRG 2017: LAW JD 898 A1 , Jan 19th to Apr 20th 2017
Days Start End Credits Instructors Bldg Room
Thu 4:20 pm 6:20 pm 8 Wendy KaplanDavid Rossman LAW 702
FALL 2017: LAW JD 898 A1 , Sep 8th to Dec 1st 2017
Days Start End Credits Instructors Bldg Room
Fri 10:30 am 12:30 pm 8 Wendy KaplanDavid Rossman LAW 702
SPRG 2018: LAW JD 898 A1 , Jan 18th to Apr 19th 2018
Days Start End Credits Instructors Bldg Room
Thu 4:20 pm 6:20 pm 8 Wendy KaplanDavid Rossman

3 credits

The American juvenile justice system was established over one hundred years ago to address the problem of young offenders. This course examines the historical, social and legal foundations for our current system. We will examine the issue of "rights" as applied to children and look at the effects of ideology and politics on the current juvenile justice system. How have assumptions of childhood and responsibility changed? Has the juvenile court been "criminalized" with the introduction of due process rights for children? Under what circumstances are children treated as adult offenders? Selected issues for inquiry include: police interrogation of juveniles; school safety and zero tolerance policies; adjudicative competency; anti-youth crime policies; conditions of incarceration; and changes brought about by elimination of mandatory juvenile life without parole. We will examine these issues through use of court cases, law review articles, governmental and private organizational position papers, and legislative history. Using the Massachusetts model, one of the early and often emulated juvenile systems, we will examine the changes in the prosecution and incarceration of juveniles over the past century. As we consider the overarching issue of whether it makes sense to maintain a separate justice system for juveniles, we will compare our system to those of other nations. We will visit the Boston Juvenile Court to observe a delinquency session and speak with court personnel. Students are expected to attend each class prepared to discuss the assigned readings. Course requirements include a 15-20 page final paper, a class presentation based on the paper topic or related class readings, and several assigned reading response papers over the course of the semester. NOTE: This class may be used to satisfy the Professional Skills requirement. GRADING NOTICE: This course does not offer the CR/NC/H option. **A student who fails to attend the initial meeting of a seminar (designated by an (S) in the title), or to obtain permission to be absent from either the instructor or the Registrar, may be administratively dropped from the seminar. Students who are on a wait list for a seminar are required to attend the first seminar meeting to be considered for enrollment.

FALL 2016: LAW JD 824 A1 , Sep 8th to Dec 8th 2016
Days Start End Credits Instructors Bldg Room
Thu 10:40 am 12:40 pm 3 Wendy Kaplan LAW 702
FALL 2017: LAW JD 824 A1 , Sep 7th to Dec 7th 2017
Days Start End Credits Instructors Bldg Room
Thu 10:40 am 12:40 pm 3 Wendy Kaplan LAW 702
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