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June 2019                                                                    Volume 5, Number 18
CILS Supervises University of Denver Law Students Tribal Will Clinic
Escondido, CA - June 5, 2019: Directing Attorney Mark Vezzola and Staff Attorney Mica Llerandi supervised a group of law students from the University of Denver during a tribal will clinic in Anza, California May 21st - 24th at the request of the Cahuilla Band of Mission Indians.
The will clinic resulted in 23 tribal members completing wills. Attorney Mica Llerandi stated,  "The Wills Clinic was a tremendous success. Since everyone should have an estate plan, CILS was very happy to work with the law students to ensure tribal members memorialized their wishes in Wills, Powers of Attorney, and Advanced Medical Directives."
Professor Lucy Marsh and the students appreciated that CILS Attorneys took time to meet with them in advance of the clinic to discuss the unique Cahuilla land assignment ordinance which the students would be following in executing wills for tribal member. Professor Marsh smiled as she said, "It was great to be coached by a Tribal Judge! We all enjoyed the chance to do something which we hope will be useful." 

Pictured: Escondido Directing Attorney  Mark   Vezzola  (back row, third from left) supervised a group of University of Denver law students at a will clinic on the Cahuilla Reservation, May 20-24, 2019. Professor Lucy Marsh, founder of the school's Tribal Wills Project, is standing in the back row, second from left. 
Settlement for Bishop Paiute Tribe's Impersonating an Officer Case
Escondido, CA - May 14, 2019:  Bishop Paiute Tribe v. Inyo County et al.:
In March of 2015  CILS on behalf of the Bishop Paiute Tribe sued the County of Inyo, its District Attorney, and Sheriff, alleging that their prosecution of a tribal police officer interfered with the Tribe's authority to police its lands.

A Settlement Conference was held in Bakersfield on May 6th, and the parties agreed to the terms and conditions of a negotiated Settlement Agreement. Following the conference, Inyo County made several proposed revisions, which are being reviewed by the Tribe. The final Settlement Agreement will be filed with the Court in June.

  CILS Program Highlights 

On March 8th CILS gave a presentation on the  White et al. v University of California and KCRC  case to an Archaeology class at California State University at San Marcos.

CILS participated in the Noli Indian School 's Career Fair at the Soboba Reservation on March 22nd. We spoke with students about Federal Indian law and the process of becoming an attorney.

CILS presented "Qualified Expert Witness" training at the Cahuilla Band of Mission  Indians on April 10th.

On May 16th CILS provided training on "Indian Law 101" in Las Vegas, Nevada and the same training on May 17th in Reno, Nevada to the private bar and Nevada Indian Legal Service attorneys. These events were sponsored by the Nevada State Bar.

  Free Walk-in Legal Clinics at Indian Health Councils in San Diego County
CILS offers two free walk-in legal clinics from 11:00 am - 2:00 pm on the second Wednesday of each month at Indian Health Council on the Rincon Indian Reservation and fourth   Wednesday of each month at the Southern Indian Health Council in Alpine. Clinics are staffed by a Legal Advocate and Attorney who assist with domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking and sex trafficking issues. Services can include helping with safety planning and crisis intervention; assistance with filling out restraining orders; restraining order hearing preparation; and other legal consultations relating to victimization.  

The walk-in clinics operate on a first come, first served basis. There are no income guidelines for assistance. The Legal Advocate and Attorney are very experienced in these areas of law, provide trauma victims with informed, confidential, and culturally appropriate services.

Good News Stories
Native American Prisoner Religious Rights Case
Elvin Ray Buck v R. Ndoh: Update on a Native American inmate Elvin Buck's case. CILS' Sacramento office filed a motion for leave to file a first amended complaint, and it was argued May 10th. We believe the motion will be granted. If granted, we will file and serve the amended complaint and seek preliminary injunctive relief on the issue of smudging.

Placement with Her Aunt
On May 14th CILS successfully secured placement of an Indian child with her aunt in Utah after living with a non-Indian foster home for two years. On behalf of our tribal client, CILS lobbied Utah to approve the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC) and was successful in arguing that bonding is not grounds to deviate from the ICWA placement preferences.
Elder Abuse Restraining Order
Staff Attorney Susan Dalati obtained an elder abuse restraining order against a woman who was abusing CILS' elderly male client. The former partner/caretaker was also convicted of felony domestic violence and misdemeanor elder abuse. A ten-year criminal protective order is also in place.

New Chief Judge at Pala
CILS Escondido Directing Attorney Mark Vezzola was appointed the Chief Judge for the Pala Band of Mission Indians in April. 

Allotment Gift Deed Upheld
CILS' Bishop office successfully challenged a BIA Central California Agency decision that found an elderly client did not have a valid interest in an allotment he received from his son by a gift deed. Solicitor concurred with CILS' legal argument that the gift deed did not need the consent of the other allotment interest holders to be valid.

We encourage you to think about CILS while you are shopping on Amazon. Give us a big smile because you are making a difference for California Indians that need low cost or free legal services. With your donation through Amazon we can continue to provide legal services to California Indians.

California Indian Legal Services