Advanced Legal Research

This guide is designed for students taking the Fall 2014 Advanced Legal Research Course.


Class Review Exercise

Dear Associate,

We are representing a client, Carla Client, who is a victim of “reparative therapy” she received from a local clinic here in Santa Clara.  Reparative therapy is an attempt to alter or change an individual’s sexual orientation.  Our client went to the clinic when she was 17 years old at the urging of her religious parents after discovering she is a lesbian.  She spent 12 months in “therapy” at this clinic during which she had her 18th birthday.  She now reports that the therapy she received there has caused her extensive psychological trauma and emotional distress.  She would like to pursue any legal remedies available to her against the clinic, including a claim for consumer fraud against the therapist and an complaint filed with the appropriate state administrative agency.  


The state of California recently banned the practice of reparative therapy with minor clients (Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code 865.2).  Please research what penalties are available and how to pursue disciplinary action with the state licensing entity. I would like to see secondary materials (including legal scholarship), relevant regulatory code, administrative decisions (if available), and any case law (including from other state jurisdictions that have similar statutes).


Also, I have a personal interest in the role international law plays in the rights of children. Take a look and see if the Convention on the Rights of the Child plays any role in restrictions on reparative therapy.


Please spend no more than 45 minutes on this project.  Email me a short memo when you are done.




Linda Lawyer

Heafey Law Library Research Team