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Civil Procedure concerns the rules, statutes, Constitutional provisions, and principles that govern the litigation of a civil case in federal court. The course begins with procedural due process, then familiarizes the student with the stages of a civil lawsuit including: pleading; structuring the lawsuit; discovery; termination of a lawsuit without trial (including settlement and use of dispute resolution processes); trial; and actions that may be taken after a jury verdict or bench trial. The course then addresses systemic issues related to how and where a lawsuit is filed including: personal and subject matter jurisdiction; venue; notice; removal; and which substantive law-- state or federal - should apply in federal court. Although reference is made to state rules and laws, the course concentrates on the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.
REQ 902: Constitutional Law I
Constitutional Law I
Course examines the roles assigned by the Constitution to the executive, legislative and judicial branches of the federal government and how federalism limits state and local authority.
REQ 903: Contracts
Contracts is concerned with the formation of contracts. The traditional offer and acceptance are analyzed in light of problems presented by modern bargaining techniques. Voidability of contracts formed by fraud, mistake, illegality, and unconscionable advantage is also stressed. The performance of contracts and the parol evidence rule are discussed.
REQ 904: Criminal Law
Criminal Law is an introduction to the legal principles of criminal law. The course is taught by analyzing actual criminal cases involving crimes including: murder, conspiracy, hate crimes and crimes of sexual violence. The course also examines legal defenses such as justification and psychiatric excuse defenses. The course also incorporates principles of statutory interpretation.
REQ 905: Legal Argument & Factual Persuasion
Legal Argument & Factual Persuasion
This course systematically introduces how lawyers develop a legal argument using a) case precedents, and b) statutes, including various interpretive tools beyond the language of the statute. The course also will instruct how to find these authorities through legal research. Students also will learn the very different protocol a lawyer uses when attempting the persuade the judge or jury to accept her version of disputed facts, culminating in every student presenting a closing argument to the jury.
REQ 906: Practicing Law in a Global World: Competencies
Practicing Law in a Global World: Competencies
While U.S. law schools generally do an excellent job of teaching students to ¿think like a lawyer,¿ there is a growing consensus that legal education has not provided students with the knowledge and skills they will need to help clients address multi-faceted issues in an interdisciplinary world. The goal of this course is fill this gap by introducing students to topics that typically are not taught in the required law school curriculum but that are important for lawyers to know. The ¿extra-legal competencies¿ that will be covered in this course include topics such as ¿how to read a financial statement,¿ project management, negotiation theories, and cultural competency. The goal of the course is to help make lawyers better problem-solvers for their clients.
REQ 907: Practicing Law in a Global World: Contexts & Competencies
Practicing Law in a Global World: Contexts & Competencies
Most law students come to law school in order to become a lawyer. But what does it mean to be a lawyer? Are there qualities, characteristics, and competencies that lawyers have in common? Is all of the work performed by lawyers the same? If not, how can a student determine those practice settings for which the student's skills, interests, and attributes would be a good fit? This course focuses on professional identity, which has been called the underdeveloped "third apprenticeship" of legal education. Students will hear from a number of speakers who work in different practice settings. Students will be required to conduct informational interviews with lawyers and prepare a portfolio. They will have numerous opportunities for reflection about the competencies that make one a good lawyer. This course will help students make more informed choices while in law school and will help prepare them for life after law school.
REQ 908: Problem Solving I: The Lawyer & Client
Problem Solving I: The Lawyer & Client
Problem Solving I introduces first-year students to cases in the manner that a case would unfold in the real world. The course is based on two simulated civil case files. Students work through a litigation file and a transaction file to practice skills that lawyers use to begin and maintain relationships with clients. The clients may be individuals, corporations, or government. Working with law school faculty and practicing lawyers, students interview a client to determine the facts of the case and to understand the client's goals, interview a witness, conduct a deposition and participate in a negotiation. In addition, students work collaboratively to discover the relevant law, to assess the client's options and to communicate the legal strategy to the client.
REQ 909: Problem Solving II: The Lawyer as Writer
Problem Solving II: The Lawyer as Writer
In Problem Solving II, students continue to hone and practice essential lawyering skills: analyzing a client's case by researching the relevant law, including cases, statutes, constitutional provisions, and administrative regulations; explaining and applying the law to the client's situation using two of the most common written forms (objective or predictive writing in an office memorandum, and persuasive writing in a trial brief); and presenting oral arguments. Because research, analysis, writing and oral argument skills improve only with practice, students will work through a variety of exercises and client problems, receiving individualized feedback from their professor during the course. Throughout the semester, we will remain mindful of the relationship between the concepts of law, order and justice - and will continually examine the role of the lawyer in that relationship.
REQ 910: Problem Solving III: The Lawyer as Persuader
Problem Solving III: The Lawyer as Persuader
Lawyers must be able to advocate effectively both orally and in writing. In Problem Solving III, students learn the essential skills of advocacy by using research and writing tools to craft arguments that are powerful, fair, well-reasoned, clearly-stated, and respectful of their adversaries and the court. Students communicate their arguments in both written briefs and in oral arguments to the court, at the trial and appellate levels. Students practice the skills of effective advocacy by exploring a variety of client problems, and they receive individualized instruction throughout the process. As the course progresses, students explore the principles of fairness, order and justice in the context of the lawyer's duties and responsibilities as an advocate.
REQ 911: Professional Responsibility
This course focuses on the regulation of lawyers. Although we will study other law, the ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct will be the primary focus of the course. The class will be taught primarily through the hypotheticals found in the casebook. The class discussions will focus on what the ABA Model Rules require, state variations that are common, and other sources of law that regulate lawyers' behavior. The class discussions will explore whether students agree with the policy choices reflected in ABA Model Rules, how the rules might apply in particular fact settings, the pressures that might cause a lawyer to ignore regulatory rules, and the steps that a lawyer might take to better serve his or her clients and to minimize the chance of a regulatory violation.
REQ 912: Property
The course examines the nature of property. While intellectual property and personal property are explored, the focus of the course is on real property - i.e., land. The course explores what real property ownership entails, estates and future interests, concurrent ownership, marital property, leasing property, selling property, private land use planning, public land use regulation, eminent domain, and regulatory takings.
REQ 913: Torts
Tort law seeks to remedy civil wrongs that result in harm to people or their property. The course will focus on the elements and proof of intentional, negligence, and strict liability causes of action, along with affirmative defenses.