Offerings

Key:
+ subject to prerequisites, co-requisites, exclusions, or professor permission
1L first year required course
a extends over more than one quarter
c/l cross listed
e first-year elective
l Lecturer-taught seminar/simulation class
m seminar
p meets the professional responsibility/ethics requirement
r papers may meet substantial research paper (SRP) graduation requirement
s meets the professional skills requirement
u simulation class
w may meet writing project (WP) graduation requirement
x offering available for bidding
(#) the number of Law School credit hours earned for successful completion
  • Abrams Environmental Law Clinic

    LAWS 67813 - 01 (1 to 3) a, s
    Primarily through litigation, students in the Abrams Environmental Law Clinic work to address climate change, water pollution and legacy contamination and to protect natural resources and human health. To date, the Clinic has focused on holding accountable natural resource extraction companies for actual or anticipated damage to the environment, as well as the government agencies that permit such activities. The Clinic has also recently become more involved in the development and implementation of rules and regulations regarding climate change, renewable energy, and energy efficiency, with an eye toward future litigation on these issues. Clinic students engage in a wide variety of activities to learn practical legal skills, from conducting factual investigations, to interviewing witnesses and preparing affidavits, to reviewing administrative determinations, to drafting motions, to conducting depositions, to working with experts, to arguing motions and to presenting at trial or an administrative hearing. The Clinic generally represents regional and national environmental organizations and works with co-counsel, thus exposing students to the staff of these organizations and other experienced environmental lawyers. The Clinic may also engage in legislative reform and rule-making efforts; students interested solely in that kind of work should notify the instructor before joining the clinic, if possible. While it helps for students to have taken or be taking one or more of Environmental Law, Administrative Law, Evidence, or Trial Advocacy, these courses are not pre-requisites or co-requisites. A student should plan to enroll in the clinic for two credits per quarter, although he or she may enroll for one or three credits per quarter after consultation with clinic faculty.
    Autumn 2015
    Mark N. Templeton, Sean Helle
  • Abrams Environmental Law Clinic

    LAWS 67813 - 01 (1 to 3) a, s
    Primarily through litigation, students in the Abrams Environmental Law Clinic work to address climate change, water pollution and legacy contamination and to protect natural resources and human health. To date, the Clinic has focused on holding accountable natural resource extraction companies for actual or anticipated damage to the environment, as well as the government agencies that permit such activities. The Clinic has also recently become more involved in the development and implementation of rules and regulations regarding climate change, renewable energy, and energy efficiency, with an eye toward future litigation on these issues. Clinic students engage in a wide variety of activities to learn practical legal skills, from conducting factual investigations, to interviewing witnesses and preparing affidavits, to reviewing administrative determinations, to drafting motions, to conducting depositions, to working with experts, to arguing motions and to presenting at trial or an administrative hearing. The Clinic generally represents regional and national environmental organizations and works with co-counsel, thus exposing students to the staff of these organizations and other experienced environmental lawyers. The Clinic may also engage in legislative reform and rule-making efforts; students interested solely in that kind of work should notify the instructor before joining the clinic, if possible. While it helps for students to have taken or be taking one or more of Environmental Law, Administrative Law, Evidence, or Trial Advocacy, these courses are not pre-requisites or co-requisites. A student should plan to enroll in the clinic for two credits per quarter, although he or she may enroll for one or three credits per quarter after consultation with clinic faculty.
    Winter 2016
    Mark N. Templeton, Sean Helle
  • Abrams Environmental Law Clinic

    LAWS 67813 - 01 (1 to 3) a, s
    Primarily through litigation, students in the Abrams Environmental Law Clinic work to address climate change, water pollution and legacy contamination and to protect natural resources and human health. To date, the Clinic has focused on holding accountable natural resource extraction companies for actual or anticipated damage to the environment, as well as the government agencies that permit such activities. The Clinic has also recently become more involved in the development and implementation of rules and regulations regarding climate change, renewable energy, and energy efficiency, with an eye toward future litigation on these issues. Clinic students engage in a wide variety of activities to learn practical legal skills, from conducting factual investigations, to interviewing witnesses and preparing affidavits, to reviewing administrative determinations, to drafting motions, to conducting depositions, to working with experts, to arguing motions and to presenting at trial or an administrative hearing. The Clinic generally represents regional and national environmental organizations and works with co-counsel, thus exposing students to the staff of these organizations and other experienced environmental lawyers. The Clinic may also engage in legislative reform and rule-making efforts; students interested solely in that kind of work should notify the instructor before joining the clinic, if possible. While it helps for students to have taken or be taking one or more of Environmental Law, Administrative Law, Evidence, or Trial Advocacy, these courses are not pre-requisites or co-requisites. A student should plan to enroll in the clinic for two credits per quarter, although he or she may enroll for one or three credits per quarter after consultation with clinic faculty.
    Spring 2016
    Mark N. Templeton, Sean Helle
  • Accounting and Financial Analysis

    LAWS 79103 - 01 (3) +, s, x
    This course is designed to refresh your knowledge of basic financial accounting [first two weeks of class] and then aims to aggressively increase your ability to be a highly sophisticated user of financial statements. After taking this course, you should improve your ability to determine a firm's accounting policy for a particular type of transaction and to determine how that policy choice affects its primary financial statements. You will also learn how to question whether these effects fairly reflect the underlying economics of the firm's transactions. Asking these questions involves an interplay between accounting, economics, finance, law and business strategy. You should therefore greatly improve your ability to use an accounting report as part of an overall assessment of the firm's strategy and the potential rewards and risks of dealing with the firm. The teaching approach will be a roughly equal combination of lecture time and demanding case applications of the lecture material that will involve group case assignments that will form the basis for in-class discussion of the cases. The technical knowledge acquired from the lecture material is applied to cases where the main goal is to examine how the reported financial statements would differ if the firm had used different accounting policies. The focus is on modifying the reported financial statements in order to obtain the cleanest possible inputs for use in such applications as equity valuation, transaction structuring and credit analysis. The topics to be discussed are likely to include the accounting for, and interpretation of: revenue recognition, intercorporate investments, organizational structures (e.g., franchising), debt, and leases. Intensive group hand-in cases will be used to illustrate how the flexibility in financial reporting can reflect both the economics of the firm and the incentives of the managers creating the financial statements. It is REQUIRED that students registering for this course have prior exposure to accounting course work, at least at the level of Fundamentals of Accounting for Attorneys (LAWS 79112), but with a strong preference for the stronger background knowledge provided by the Booth course Financial Accounting (B30000). Note that Legal Elements of Accounting (LAWS 79102) is NOT ACCEPTABLE TO MEET THE PREREQUISITE. Grading will be based on case assignments, short homework assignments, class participation, and a final exam. Prerequisite: Fundamentals of Accounting for Attorneys (LAWS 79112).
    Spring 2016
    Philip G. Berger
  • Administrative Law

    LAWS 46101 - 01 (3) x
    This course examines the structure of the administrative state, its relations to the other branches of government and private citizens, and the constitutional, statutory, and common law rules that govern the substance and procedure of administration action and inaction. The course focuses on some constitutional topics, including the non-delegation doctrine, presidential control over administrative agencies, and the delegation of adjudicative authority to non-Article III officers. Substantial attention is given to the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) and other statutory requirements for lawful agency action. Covered topics include the proper role of agencies in interpreting statutory and regulatory law; judicial review of agency decisions; and public participation in agency rulemaking. A central theme of the course is how the law manages the tension between rule of law values (e.g., procedural regularity, accountability, and substantive limits on arbitrary action) and the desire for flexible, effective administrative governance. The student's grade is based on class participation and a final examination.
    Winter 2016
    Daniel Hemel
  • Administrative Law

    LAWS 46101 - 01 (3) x
    This course examines the structure of the administrative state, its relations to the other branches of government and private citizens, and the constitutional, statutory, and common law rules that govern the substance and procedure of administration action and inaction. A central theme is how the law manages the tension between rule of law values (e.g., procedural regularity, accountability, and substantive limits on arbitrary action) and the desire for flexible, effective administrative governance. In particular, the course focuses on constitutional topics, including the non-delegation doctrine, presidential control over administrative agencies, and the delegation of adjudicative authority to non-Article III officers. Substantial attention is also given to the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) and other statutory requirements for lawful agency action. Other covered topics include the proper role of agencies in interpreting statutory and regulatory law; judicial review of agency decisions; and public participation in agency rulemaking. The student's grade is based on class participation and a final examination.
    Spring 2016
    Jennifer Nou
  • Admiralty Law

    LAWS 71001 - 01 (3)
    This course will cover the development and scope of this part of the jurisdiction of the federal courts, the role of the Supreme Court in the common law development of the substantive law of the admiralty, and several of the main elements of substantive maritime law: maritime torts, industrial accidents, collisions, salvage, and limitation of liability. The student's grade is based on class participation and a final take-home examination.
    Autumn 2015
    Randall D. Schmidt
  • Advanced Contracts: Sales Law for a Modern Economy

    LAWS 48601 - 01 (3) s, u, x
    This class is an advanced contracts class that focuses on Article 2 of the Uniform Commercial Code. It presents the material from a hybrid jurisprudential, transactional and litigation perspective in an effort to help students integrate what they have learned about contracts in theory, into the types of tasks that they will face as a transactional lawyer. For (almost) every class students will prepare a written exercise (about 2-4 pages) applying the material in the reading, these range from writing letters to clients, to lecturing the loading dock staff of a company, to researching the content of industry norms, to drafting contract clauses to deal with particular transactional realities. During the quarter students will do a mock appellate argument, a negotiation, and will draft a sales agreement. There is no exam. Written assignments and the final contract will count for 60% of the grade, the other 40% will be based on class preparation and participation.
    Spring 2016
    Lisa Bernstein
  • Advanced Corporate Law: Mergers and Acquisitions

    LAWS 42311 - 01 (2 to 3) +, l, m, x
    This seminar develops and applies the student’s knowledge of corporate and contracts law in the context of mergers and acquisitions. After introducing the general subject, the seminar studies a progression of landmark Delaware cases delineating the fiduciary duties of directors and controlling stockholders in the contexts of (i) selling a company; (ii) defending against takeovers and proxy contests; (iii) protecting transactions against interlopers and changed circumstances; (iv) squeezing out minority stockholders; (v) going private in a leveraged buyout; and (vi) responding to stockholder activism. In reading and discussing these cases, the students will come to understand not only the relevant legal issues, but also a fair amount about the broader non-legal context of corporate transactions. The seminar then concludes with a comprehensive look at structuring, negotiating, drafting, and other elements of modern practice in the contexts of friendly and unfriendly transactions involving both public and private companies. Contracts is a prerequisite for Law School students, and either Corporations or Business Associations I is also recommended (but may be taken concurrently). Chicago Booth MBA students have taken the seminar recently and done well, and do not need the instructor's consent in order to submit a registration request. Grades will be based on an eight-hour take-home final exam, with exceptional class participation taken into account. Students wishing to take the seminar for three credits must write an additional 10-12 page research paper.
    Autumn 2015
    Douglas Barnard
  • Advanced Issues in Delaware Corporate Law

    LAWS 52203 - 01 (1) +, x
    This course is not a survey or an introduction to corporate law. It is a class designed to help students understand why Delaware dominates the corporate chartering market by examining recent issues arising in the Delaware courts and the Delaware legislature. Students will be expected to read a variety of articles, as well as judicial decisions and statutory material, addressing the most current topical issues in Delaware corporate law and corporate governance, ranging from M&A issues to recent bylaw battles and to developments in shareholder activism. Students must have had a basic business organizations course or M&A course, as familiarity with basic corporate law principles is necessary and essential. Student participation is required. There will not be a casebook; instead, students will read materials and reported decisions that are easily accessible in the public domain. The mini-course will meet April 25, 26, 27 and 28. Grades will be awarded based on class participation and an in-class final examination that will be based on the materials covered in class.
    Spring 2016
    William Chandler
  • Advanced Law and Economics: Theory and Practice

    LAWS 55401 - 01 (3) +, c/l, r, w
    This course examines theoretical and empirical work in the economic analysis of law. It will cover, among other things, optimal tort rules, models of contract liability and remedies, optimal criminal rules, settlement and plea bargaining, and models of judicial behavior. Students are required to be PhD students in the Economics Department, the Harris School or the Booth School, or law students. Students should have the equivalent of an undergraduate economics degree or have taken Economic Analysis of the Law in the Law School. The course will expect students to have Economics PhD-level math skills. Students will be required to submit 3-4 short research proposals related to topics covered in class. These proposals are sketches of original research that, once developed, could yield publishable academic papers.
    Spring 2016
    Anup Malani
  • Advanced Legal Research

    LAWS 79802 - 01 (2 to 3) l, m, s, x
    The purpose of this seminar is to enhance students' knowledge of legal sources and to develop their ability to research the law. The seminar will cover the basic categories of legal research in depth and with a focus on practical skills and efficiency, including statutes, administrative law, legislative history, cases, and secondary sources. This seminar also will address a series of practice areas such as corporate and securities, tax, transactional, federal procedure, and intellectual property, focusing on the substantive resources and practical research skills for each. Upon successful completion of the seminar, students will expand their understanding of research resources in a variety of areas, will improve their skills in using legal research tools, and will develop extensive research knowledge in at least one area from their work on a final research paper. The seminar will be limited to twenty-five students with priority to third year students. To receive credit for this seminar, students must complete research assignments (30 percent of grade), submit a research paper on a topic approved by the instructor (60 percent of grade), and attend and participate in course meetings (10 percent). Students may earn either 2 or 3 credits for this seminar depending upon the number of assignments completed and the length of their final paper. A 20-25 page paper will be required for the 3-credit option for this course, along with 4 research assignments. For the 2-credit option for this course, students will write a 10-15 page paper and complete 2 research assignments. Research assignments will count towards 30% of the final grade; the research paper 60%. Class participation counts for 10%. In the research paper, the student should extensively and comprehensively address sources for researching the topic, discuss successful and less useful techniques, and recommend research strategies.
    Autumn 2015
    Todd Ito
  • Advanced Legal Research

    LAWS 79802 - 01 (2 to 3) m, s, x
    The purpose of this seminar is to enhance students’ knowledge of legal sources and to develop their ability to research the law. The seminar will cover the basic categories of legal research in depth and with a focus on practical skills and efficiency, including statutes, administrative law, legislative history, cases, and secondary sources. This seminar also will address a series of practice areas such as corporate and securities, tax, transactional, federal procedure, and intellectual property, focusing on the substantive resources and practical research skills for each. Upon successful completion of the seminar, students will expand their understanding of research resources in a variety of areas, will improve their skills in using legal research tools, and will develop extensive research knowledge in at least one area from their work on a final research paper. The seminar will be limited to twenty-five students with priority to third year students. To receive credit for this seminar, students must complete research assignments (30 percent of grade), submit a research paper on a topic approved by the instructor (60 percent of grade), and attend and participate in course meetings (10 percent). Students may earn either 2 or 3 credits for this seminar depending upon the number of assignments completed and the length of their final paper (minimum 20 pages for 3 credits; 10 pages for 2 credits). In the research paper, the student should extensively and comprehensively address sources for researching the topic, discuss successful and less useful techniques, and recommend research strategies.
    Winter 2016
    Sheri H. Lewis
  • Advanced Legal Writing

    LAWS 79901 - 01 (2) +, s, w, x
    This course will prepare law students for the working world by honing writing skills for briefs, memoranda, motions and contracts. We will discuss and practice the major principles of legal writing in plain English -- no jargon, no legalese, no anachronistic fluff. In addition to fine-tuning basic and more advanced writing skills, students will learn how to use their writing to win arguments, persuade clients and sharpen their own thinking. The class will function largely as a workshop where we analyze the impact of various writing styles. Through exercises and group critiques, students will learn to write more succinctly and effectively. Better writers make better lawyers. Regular attendance is essential. The course concludes with an eight-hour take-home examination, which determines the student's grade. Students must complete all assignments before the exam. This course satisfies the Writing Project writing requirement. Legal Research and Writing is a pre-requisite.
    Spring 2016
    Elizabeth Duquette
  • Advanced Topics in Corporate Reorganizations

    LAWS 43702 - 01 (2 to 3) +, m, x
    This seminar will explore emerging issues in corporate reorganization. We are principally interested in the ever-present tension between bankruptcy law and policy and the practical reality of managing a company’s business in Chapter 11. The seminar will address four broad topics: (i) asset sales, (ii) post-petition financing, (iii) cross-border insolvency and (iv) plan confirmation. We will devote two seminar meetings to each topic. During the first, we will discuss case law and hypotheticals, academic and practice-oriented articles, and pleadings, briefs and orders from recent Chapter 11 cases. During the second meeting, we will invite a leading professional to join our seminar and discuss his or her perspectives on the topic that we are studying. Students will lead this discussion. If time permits, our group will join the professional for dinner after the seminar. Grades will be based on class participation (40%) and four short papers (60%). The papers are intended to prepare you to engage deeply in discussion with the invited professionals. Each paper should not exceed six double-spaced pages, should analyze and raise questions about an aspect of a topic that we are studying, and should be submitted no later than noon on the day when we are hosting a professional. Although there is no pre- or co-requisite for this seminar, we recommend that you have taken or are currently taking a course in bankruptcy law. The instructors are Judge Christopher Sontchi of the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware and Douglas Baird. Students wishing to take the seminar for three credits must write an additional 10-12 page research paper.
    Spring 2016
    Douglas G. Baird, Christopher Sontchi
  • Advanced Topics in Moral, Political, and Legal Philosophy

    LAWS 78603 - 01 (3) c/l, m, r, w, x
    The topic for Winter 2016 is “Etiological/Genealogical Critiques of Concepts, Beliefs and Values.” If you had been brought up in a different family, or a different culture, your religious and moral beliefs would likely have been very different than they are—perhaps even your beliefs about the world around you. Should this fact bother us? Should the origin of our beliefs and values make us skeptical about them, or should it lead us to revise them? Historians and social scientists, from Marvis Harris to Ian Morris, have regularly proffered etiological/explanatory accounts and think they have debunking implications; recently, a number of Anglophone philosophers have begun to address variations on this question, including G.A. Cohen, George Sher, Sharon Street, and Roger White, among others. But interest in the etiology (or genealogy) of beliefs and values, and its significance, long predates these 20th-century writers. We will also give extended consideration to at least Herder, Hegel, Marx and Nietzsche—time permitting, perhaps some others.
    Winter 2016
    Brian Leiter, Michael Forster
  • Advanced Trademarks and Unfair Competition

    LAWS 69902 - 01 (2 to 3) +, l, m, w, x
    This seminar addresses current issues in trademark law and their evolution since the latter half of the 19th century, such as trademark law's constitutional foundations; competing justifications of trademark rights (incentivizing manufacturers while lowering consumer search costs, fostering commercial morality, protecting property rights, vindicating speech interests, and so on); the reciprocal development of trademark doctrine and commercial practice; the interplay of trademark and First Amendment law; statutory and judicial limitations on trademark rights and those limitations' normative underpinnings; counterfeiting, contributory infringement, and the online marketplace; and the peculiar role (especially in light of other nations' practices) of federal registrations in the acquisition and maintenance of U.S. trademark rights. Enrollment is limited to twenty-five students. Previous or concurrent coursework or professional experience in intellectual property is recommended but not required. A student's grade is based on class participation and either a series of short thought papers for two credits, or a series of longer research papers totaling at least 20 pages, or a major research paper, both for three credits.
    Winter 2016
    Chad J. Doellinger, Uli Widmaier
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution

    LAWS 58402 - 01 (2 to 3) l, s, u, x
    This is a class in the dispute resolution methods that attorneys often use in the practice of law. The class provides experiential simulations in negotiation, mediation, and arbitration. The class differs from most other law classes in the following ways: 1. Many classes teach a substantive body of law; this class, in contrast, is designed to teach a variety of lawyering skills. 2. In most classes, students participate strictly as individuals; in contrast, students in this class often interact in small group settings and simulations, and therefore, must listen to and cooperate with peers while working through their disagreements. 3. Many classes measure student performance once, at the end of the semester, through an issue-spotting exam; in contrast, this class requires brief reflection papers that are based on a combination of readings, group activities, and simulated exercises. 4. Most classes involve little or no role playing; in contrast, this class gives students the experience of being a negotiator, trial advocate, arbitrator, mediator, victim/complainant and defendant/respondent in an adversarial proceeding. The instructor will base simulations on cases from his private arbitration practice. Students will be required to sign and abide by a confidentiality agreement with respect to these sensitive materials. Students who have taken Strategies and Processes of Negotiations (LAWS 46702) may take this class, but must register for and will receive only two credits.
    Spring 2016
    Michael LeRoy
  • Amartya Sen

    LAWS 78604 - 01 (3) +, c/l, m, r
    Amartya Sen is, of course, a distinguished economist, winner of the 1998 Nobel Prize. But he is also a philosopher whose philosophical thought informs his economic writings and who has long defended the importance of philosophy for economic thought. This seminar will study the philosophical aspects of his thought, not attempting to separate them from his economic contributions, which would be wrong, but attempting to focus on the specific contributions Sen has been able to make to economics in virtue of being a philosopher. We will begin by studying two distinct though related strands of his thought: work on choice, welfare, and measurement, and work on development. We continue with his influential critique of Utilitarianism on the nature of preference and value, and the importance of equality. We will then devote substantial time to The Idea of Justice, a major contribution to political philosophy. Finally, we will examine more recent writings on Indian rationalist philosophy and on religious identity. Admission by permission of the instructor. Permission must be sought in writing by September 15. Prerequisite: An undergraduate major in philosophy or some equivalent solid philosophy preparation. This is a 500 level course. Ph.D. students in Philosophy and Political Theory may enroll without permission. I am eager to have some Economics graduate students in the class, and will discuss the philosophy prerequisite in a flexible way with such students.
    Autumn 2015
    Martha Nussbaum
  • American Law and the Rhetoric of Race

    LAWS 49801 - 01 (3) c/l
    This course presents an episodic study of the ways in which American law has treated legal issues involving race. Two episodes are studied in detail: the criminal law of slavery during the antebellum period and the constitutional attack on state-imposed segregation in the twentieth century. The case method is used, although close attention is paid to litigation strategy as well as to judicial opinions. Undergraduate students registering in LLSO, PLSC, HIST cross-listed offerings must request faculty consent prior to registration. Law students do NOT need consent. Grades are based on class participation and a final examination.
    Spring 2016
    Dennis J. Hutchinson