This past week I selected an assignment from the Environmental department that required me to analyze the Code of Miami-Dade County and formulate an argument that our client complied with the criteria needed to obtain a specific type of permit. Finding no case law or secondary sources that interpreted the code section I was researching, this complex assignment required me to “think outside the box” in terms of legal research. I turned to Google, where I found memoranda by the County that explained why a proposal was permitted, and under what criteria. I then had to think critically and creatively to analogize our client’s proposal to prior approved proposals.
What was great about this assignment was that I got the opportunity to work closely with two of the most talented and experienced land use attorneys around, Cristina Lumpkin and Howard Nelson. With their guidance, I was able to narrow down my research and focus on what was pertinent to our client’s proposal. I was also able to sit in and participate in one of their many brainstorming sessions, helping jumpstart my legal analysis. More than anything, however, I was touched by how accommodating they were and how they fielded all my questions. I’m looking forward to my next Environmental assignment!