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
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
  • Public Opinion, Public Policy, and the Law

    LAWS 69002 - 01 (3) m, r, w, x
    This seminar will explore the intersection of public opinion, public policy, and the law. To date, questions about whether and how public opinion influences public policy have been addressed primarily by political scientists. But these questions are also vital to several legal domains, in particular constitutional law and election law. In the constitutional law context, the mistranslation of public opinion into public policy may be evidence of a political malfunction that requires judicial intervention. In the election law context, one of the most important functions of elections is to align the preferences of the electorate with the policies enacted by their representatives. The seminar will tackle these complex and interesting issues through readings drawn from legal scholarship, political theory, and empirical political science. An effort will also be made to have outside speakers present papers once or twice during the quarter. The grade is based on a final written paper.
    Winter 2015
    Nicholas Stephanopoulos
  • Racism, Law, and Social Sciences

    LAWS 54303 - 01 (3) m, r, w, x
    This seminar will provide an in-depth study of theories and methods for analysis of racialization in past and present societies. Analyses of the social construction of racial and ethnic identities have facilitated studies of the ways in which social differences are created, maintained, and masked. Subjects to be addressed in this seminar include the interrelation of racializing ideologies with other cultural and social dimensions, such as class, ethnicity, gender, political and legal structures, and economic influences. We will also consider the related histories of biological and genetic concepts of different races within the human species as part of the context of our study of racism operating within social processes. The seminar includes a major writing project in the form of a seminar paper. The grade is based on a final written paper (80%) and class participation (20%).
    Winter 2015
    Christopher Fennell
  • Regulation of Sexuality

    LAWS 72201 - 01 (3) +, c/l, r
    This course explores the many ways in which the legal system regulates sexuality, sexual identity, and gender and considers such regulation in a number of substantive areas as well as the limits on placed on such regulation by constitutional guarantees including free speech, equal protection, and due process. Readings include cases and articles from the legal literature together with work by scholars in other fields. The grade is based on a substantial paper, series of short papers, or final examination, with class participation taken into account. Paper writers require permission of the instructor. Undergraduates require permission of the instructor. Constitutional Law I, III, and/or IV are recommended but not required prerequisites.
    Spring 2015
    Mary Anne Case
  • Regulatory Interpretation

    LAWS 51604 - 01 (3) +, m, r, w, x
    This seminar will explore whether regulatory texts warrant interpretive theories distinct from those applicable to statutes, and what those approaches should entail. Relevant topics will include the institutional differences between agencies and Congress; judicial doctrines regarding an agency’s interpretation of its own rules; and the extent to which agencies should interpret regulations differently than courts. Administrative Law or Legislation and Statutory Interpretation is a prerequisite (both are recommended); students who have not taken either will require instructor permission. Grades will be based on class participation, including weekly short questions or comments posted to Chalk, and a research paper.
    Spring 2015
    Jennifer Nou
  • Religion Law and Politics

    LAWS 97521 - 01 (3) c/l, m, w, x
    This seminar examines the conceptualization and realization of religious liberty and the separation of church and state. We explore philosophical precepts and historical contexts, review the state of the law, and address current controversial issues. There are no prerequisites. Grades are based on a paper and class participation.
    Spring 2015
    Sylvia Neil
  • Remedies

    LAWS 41401 - 01 (2)
    The way in which the law responds to violations of rights is no less important than the way in which those rights are allocated. The law of remedies determines the law's response to violations of rights, and in so doing, it delineates their boundaries and gives them legal meaning. Hence, the study of the law of remedies is closely related to the study of the substantive law, each field shedding light on the other. This course focuses on remedies in Contracts and Torts, referring to the goals of the substantive law to better understand the remedial law. It explores the law of damages in both Contracts and Torts and covers topics such as: restitutionary damages; probabilistic recoveries; the relationship between damages and non-legal sanctions; evidential damage; and liquidated damages. The course also covers the remedies of specific performance in Contracts and injunction in Torts and compares and contrasts these remedies with monetary ones. Some of the defenses available to both the breaching party and the wrongdoer, such as mitigation of damages and comparative fault, in Torts and Contracts will also be discussed. This mini-course meets during the first four full weeks of the quarter only (starting September 30 and ending October 24). A student's grade will be based on a 3-hour in-class exam.
    Autumn 2014
    Ariel Porat
  • Roman Law

    LAWS 47702 - 01 (3) e, m, r, w, x
    The seminar develops skill in analyzing legal problems according to the processes of the Roman civil law, in contrast with those of the common law, and does not purport to give a comprehensive treatment of its detailed workings. The material provides an outline of the sources and procedure of Roman private law, followed by an examination of the Roman institutional system, the basis of most modern civil law codes. Particular emphasis is given to property and to obligations (contracts and torts). No knowledge of Latin is required for the seminar. This class will be assessed via a series of short research papers. Because this is a 1L elective, it will be graded on the curve usually applied to courses (as all 1L electives are) and will not count against the seminar limit.
    Spring 2015
    Richard A. Epstein
  • Secured Transactions

    LAWS 42201 - 01 (3) x
    This course deals with the many legal issues that come into play when there are collateralized loans for which the collateral is personal property. Students focus on Article 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code, the Bankruptcy Code, and other related laws. This form of lending is central to our economy, and the applicable legal doctrines are ones that every corporate and commercial lawyer should firmly grasp. The course is a useful, though not absolutely essential, preparation for Bankruptcy and Reorganization: The Federal Bankruptcy Code (LAWS 73601). The student's grade is based on a proctored final examination.
    Autumn 2014
    Randal C. Picker
  • Secured Transactions

    LAWS 42201 - 01 (3) x
    Secured lending is central to our economy, and the applicable legal doctrines are ones that every corporate and commercial lawyer should grasp. Focusing primarily on Article 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code, students will learn about different forms of collateral, how security interests are created and perfected, and the remedies available to secured lenders. This course is a useful preparation for Bankruptcy and Reorganization courses, and will be worthwhile for students contemplating private practice in corporate, commercial finance or bankruptcy/workout groups. Grades will be based on a final examination. Open to MBA students.
    Winter 2015
    Erin Casey
  • State and Local Finance: Selected Topics

    LAWS 62202 - 01 (2) m, x
    This seminar looks at a variety of fiscal challenges facing state and local governments, and at the legal constraints on politically attractive solutions to these challenges. In past years, topics have included educational funding, pension funding, "welcome stranger" property tax assessment, eminent domain, tax nexus, and tax allocation formulas. The grade is based on a series of reaction papers and class participation.
    Spring 2015
    Julie Roin
  • Strategic Business Partnerships

    LAWS 79917 - 01 (2 to 3) s, u, x
    As modern businesses face increasing pressure to increase innovation and speed to market while cutting costs and mitigating risk, they have increasingly recognized that the path to success includes partnering with third parties. Success in these relationships requires significant advance planning, a focus on shared goals, and the ability to capture the essence of the transaction in a legal document that is often negotiated on an accelerated time frame. Lawyers working for or with these businesses must bring more than legal expertise and negotiating skills to the table; they must also draw upon sound business principles, their knowledge of the underlying business, its core competencies and strategic needs, to implement successful and durable arrangements. This class, intended for those planning careers as either business/transactional attorneys or business leaders, will explore various alternative partnering options and how they are documented by the legal and business teams. These alternatives, intersecting law and business, will be examined, discussed, and negotiated against a backdrop of real-world business intelligence and agreements, using a publicly traded Fortune 100 retailer as the business case upon which much of the class will be based. A former CEO of the company will join the class as a guest speaker to provide business context; external attorneys involved in many of the transactions will provide occasional commentary and additional context. Grades will be based on a series of short reflection papers, substantial in-class exercises and negotiations, and out-of-class projects. A 2-CREDIT OPTION IS AVAILABLE WITH PERMISSION OF INSTRUCTOR.
    Spring 2015
    David Zarfes, Matt Myren
  • Strategic Drafting

    LAWS 79914 - 01 (2) m, s, x
    Effective drafting requires not only clarity and precision, but also (a) an awareness of the fundamental principles of contract interpretation and (b) a consideration of the context and strategic objectives. In this seminar, we will discuss principles of contract interpretation and explore scenarios in which a lawyer may be called upon to draft/revise contracts and related documents. These scenarios may be informed by a variety of factors, including the objectives and leverage of the parties, the nature of the transaction, and the allotted resources (e.g., time, money) for drafting and negotiating. Through encountering these scenarios, students will develop the ability to draft strategically. Grades will be based on class participation, a series of short exercises, and a final exercise.
    Spring 2015
    David Finkelstein
  • Strategies and Processes of Negotiation

    LAWS 46702 - 01 (3) s, u, x
    Increasingly negotiation is part of the day-to-day life of managers. The aim of this class is to make students more effective negotiators. Students should leave the class with (1) a structured approach for preparing for and thinking about negotiations; and (2) a refined set of skills for carrying out negotiations. A central part of the class is an extensive set of negotiation simulations. These simulations take students through a variety of negotiations: single and multiple issue; two-negotiator and multiple-negotiator (coalitional); and internal (within organization) and external. In addition, the class includes a number of cases. Lectures, readings, and structured analytical exercises supplement the simulations and cases. The grade is based on a series of reaction papers and problem sets, class participation, and a final group paper. Note: The class will end at 11:30 a.m. on November 13 and 20.
    Autumn 2014
    George Wu
  • Structuring Venture Capital, Private Equity, and Entrepreneurial Transactions

    LAWS 71401 - 01 (3) +, s
    This course covers tax, legal, and economic principles applicable to a series of interesting, complex, current entrepreneurial transactions, utilizing venture capital or private equity financing, including (1) new business start up, (2) growth equity investment in existing business enterprise, (3) leveraged buyout of private or public company (including going-private transaction), (4) use of flow-through tax entity such as S corporation, partnership, or LLC for variety of venture capital or private equity financed transactions, (5) devising equity-based executive compensation program, (6) private equity financed restructuring or workout (in or out of bankruptcy) for troubled over-leveraged enterprise and utilizing troubled company’s NOL after restructuring, (7) devising exit scenario for successful venture capital or private equity financed enterprise (such as IPO, SEC rule 144 sale, sale of company, or merger of company into larger enterprise), and (8) forming new venture capital, LBO, or private equity fund. Substantive subjects include federal income tax, securities regulation, corporate law, partnership law, LLC law, bankruptcy law, fraudulent conveyance law, and other legal doctrines, as well as accounting rules and practical structuring issues (including use of common and preferred stock, subordinated debt, convertible debt, convertible preferred stock, warrants, and options), all reviewed in a transactional context, and with discussion of their policy underpinnings and likely future evolution. No specific prerequisites, but introductory income tax strongly recommended, entity taxation desirable, and knowledge of corporate law, securities regulation, bankruptcy, and accounting helpful. However, the course book and the course book appendix contain adequate discussion and supplemental precedents for an understanding of the material covered by the course. Booth students do not require instructor consent in order to submit a registration request. The grade is based on a final in-class examination.
    Spring 2015
    Jack S. Levin, Donald Rocap
  • Taxation of Corporations I

    LAWS 75801 - 01 (3) +
    This course examines income tax aspects of the formations, distributions, and liquidations of corporations. The focus is on transactional and planning aspects of the corporate tax. Prerequisite: Introductory Income Tax required except with permission of the instruction. The student's grade is based on class participation and a final examination.
    Winter 2015
    David A. Weisbach
  • Taxation of Corporations II

    LAWS 75901 - 01 (3) +
    This course surveys the taxation of reorganizations and other adjustments involving continuing businesses: mergers, asset and stock acquisitions and other similar shifts of ownership and control; recapitalizations; and divisions. Points of focus are the recognition of gain and loss and the survival and allocation of tax attributes (basis, earnings, and loss carryovers) in these transactions. Prerequisites: Taxation of Corporations I. Students' grades based on a final proctored examination.
    Spring 2015
    David A. Weisbach
  • Technology Policy

    LAWS 91311 - 01 (2 to 3) m, x
    This seminar will look at a mixture of old and new materials on technology and the law, with a special focus on the intersection of antitrust and intellectual property. We typically read 2-5 recent books. Students write blog posts on the readings which will be posted on the class blog. Students will also comment on posts by other students. The blog postings do not fulfill one of the substantial writing requirements. By default, this seminar is 2 credits, but you can take the seminar for 3 credits if you choose to write a meaningful additional paper for 1 credit. The syllabus for the seminar is at http://picker.uchicago.edu/seminar/syllabus.htm and the class blog is at http://picker.typepad.com/picker_seminar/. The student's grade is based on class and blog participation.
    Winter 2015
    Randal C. Picker
  • Telecommunications and Internet Law

    LAWS 64702 - 01 (3)
    This is an introductory course looking at the regulatory regimes in the U.S. that apply to telephony (both wireline and wireless) and the infrastructure of the Internet. In particular, this course will explore the legal and policy history behind such regulation and the difficulty of classifying new technologies and applying the existing regulatory regimes to new technologies. This course will not cover mass media regulation (broadcast television and radio, or cable television). Grades will be based upon class participation, a few short reaction papers, and a final in-class exam.
    Spring 2015
    Joan E. Neal
  • The Chicago Journal of International Law

    LAWS 99903 - 01 (1) a, r
    The Chicago Journal of International Law, a biannual student-edited journal, is the Law School’s newest journal. It publishes short Comments and articles by students and scholars on matters of international law and foreign affairs. Students gain access to participate as a staff member via the Write-on Competition or via the Topics Access process. Each student is paired with a faculty member who supervises the writing of the comment. Students may receive three credits for their work in writing the comments. The comments may also satisfy the SRP graduation requirement. Please see the Student Handbook for additional details regarding the competition, credits, and the SRP. For more information on the journal, please visit http://cjil.uchicago.edu.
    Autumn 2014
    Tom Ginsburg
  • The Chicago Journal of International Law

    LAWS 99903 - 01 (1) a, r
    The Chicago Journal of International Law, a biannual student-edited journal, is the Law School’s newest journal. It publishes short Comments and articles by students and scholars on matters of international law and foreign affairs. Students gain access to participate as a staff member via the Write-on Competition or via the Topics Access process. Each student is paired with a faculty member who supervises the writing of the comment. Students may receive three credits for their work in writing the comments. The comments may also satisfy the SRP graduation requirement. Please see the Student Handbook for additional details regarding the competition, credits, and the SRP. For more information on the jour