Deirdre M. Smith
Professor of Law and
Director of the Cumberland Legal Aid Clinic
B.A., University of Pennsylvania
J.D., University of Maine School of Law
Office Phone: (207) 780-4370
deirdre.smith (at) maine.edu
Professor Smith is the Director of the Law School's Cumberland Legal Aid Clinic, and she teaches General Practice Clinic, Evidence, and Law & Mental Illness. She graduated from the University of Maine School of Law, summa cum laude, and received her B.A. in American History, magna cum laude, from the University of Pennsylvania.
After graduating from the Law School, Professor Smith clerked for Chief Judge Gene Carter of the United States District Court for the District of Maine, and then joined the Portland law firm of Drummond Woodsum & MacMahon. Through her varied civil litigation practice at the firm, Professor Smith represented educational institutions, businesses, municipalities and individuals in jury and bench trials, arbitrations, and mediations, as well as in appeals before the Maine Supreme Judicial Court and the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit.
Professor Smith's scholarly research has focused primarily on the intersection of psychiatry, mental illness, and evidence law in the context of civil litigation. In addition to publishing several law review articles on these issues, she authored the 2010-2011 and 2011-2012 Supplements to the treatise, Psychiatric and Psychological Evidence (3rd ed., West 2005), written by the late Professor Daniel Shuman.
Professor Smith serves as Chair of the Maine Supreme Judicial Court's Advisory Committee on the Rules of Evidence and is on several committees addressing legal aid and access to justice for Maine residents with low incomes. She formerly served on Governor John Baldacci's Select Committee on Judicial Appointments and the Board of Directors of the Maine Bar Foundation. She was a founding board member of KIDS Legal.
She is the recipient of the Maine Judicial Branch's 2011 Advocate for Justice Award and the 2012 USM Faculty Senate Award for Teaching. She was the Law School's Glassman Faculty Research Scholar from 2010-2012.
- Diagnosing Liability: The Legal History of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, 84 Temple Law Review 1 ( 2011) [PDF] [SSRN]
- The Disordered and Discredited Plaintiff: Psychiatric Evidence in Civil Litigation, 31 Cardozo L. Rev. 749 (2009) [PDF] [SSRN]
- An Uncertain Privilege: Implied Waiver and the Evisceration of the Psychotherapist-Patient Privilege in Federal Courts, 58 DePaul Law Review 79 (2008) [PDF] [SSRN]
- Who Says You're Disabled? The Role of Medical Evidence in the ADA Definition of Disability, 82 Tulane L. Rev. 1 (2007) [PDF] [SSRN]
- The Paradox of Personality: Mental Illness, Employment Discrimination and the Americans with Disabilities Act, 17 Geo. Mason U. Civ. R.L.J. 79 (2006) [SSRN]
- Maine School Law, H. Pringle and A. Tchao, eds. (Drummond Woodsum & MacMahon 2001) (co-author of Chapter 6: “School Litigation and Liability”)
- Representing Deaf Clients: What Every Lawyer Should Know, 15 Me. Bar J. 128 (2000) (co-authored with Elizabeth Gallie, Esq.)
- Confronting Silence: The Constitution, Deaf Criminal Defendants and the Right to Interpretation During Trial, 46 Me. L. Rev. 87 (1994) (winner of 1994 SCRIBES Award) [PDF]