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
  • 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 2014
    Anup Malani
  • 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. Regular attendance is essential. Through exercises and group critiques, students will learn to write more succinctly and effectively. Better writers make better lawyers. 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 requirements of the Writing Project writing requirement. Legal Research and Writing is a pre-requisite. NB: The first meeting of this class will be 6:10-8:10 p.m. on Thursday, March 27. All other meetings will be on Tuesdays, 4:00-6:00 p.m. The class will not meet Tuesday, April 1.
    Spring 2014
    Elizabeth Duquette
  • Advanced Topics in Corporate Reorganizations

    LAWS 43702 - 01 (2 to 3) +, m, w, 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: asset sales, inter-creditor agreements, post-petition financing, and the safe harbors for financial contracts. 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 Professor Edward Morrison and Judge Christopher Sontchi of the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware. Students wishing to take the seminar for three credits must write an additional 10-12 page research paper.
    Spring 2014
    Christopher Sontchi, Edward Morrison
  • Advanced Topics in Moral, Political, and Legal Philosophy

    LAWS 78603 - 01 (3) c/l, m, r, w, x
    The topic for Winter 2014 will be "Ideology." What makes some moral, political, economic, or legal ideas "ideological," in the pejorative sense associated with the Marxian tradition? How do facts about the genesis of an ideology bear on its epistemic warrant? What is the relationship between ideology and "false consciousness"? How can an individual be mistaken about his interests? What concept of interests is needed for the theory of ideology and false consciousness? We will use some aspects of contemporary economics as a case study for the theory of ideology. Readings from some or all of Hegel, Marx, Horkheimer, Adorno, J. Elster, R. Geuss, M. Rosen, G. Becker.
    Winter 2014
    Brian Leiter, Michael Forster
  • Advanced Trademarks and Unfair Competition

    LAWS 69902 - 01 (2 to 3) 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 thought papers for two credits, or a series of short research papers totaling at least 25 pages, or a major research paper, both for three credits.
    Winter 2014
    Chad J. Doellinger, Uli Widmaier
  • American Indian Law

    LAWS 80302 - 01 (3) m, r, w, x
    This seminar will consider two distinct bodies of law regarding the 565 federally recognized Indian tribes in the United States. First, we will study the law governing the relation between non-tribal law and tribal law. This is the law of treaties, federal jurisdiction, and sovereignty. The flavor for this part of the seminar will be international law, although with a decidedly American approach. Second, we will study the law within several prominent tribal areas. The Navajo Nation, for instance, has a court system that is roughly parallel to the American one, but with key differences for handling crimes, contracts, torts, and so on. The flavor for this part of the seminar will be comparative law, since we will compare how different legal rules develop in distinct but related legal systems.
    Spring 2014
    M. Todd Henderson
  • Arbitration in the United States

    LAWS 96404 - 01 (3) m, w, x
    This seminar focuses on arbitration as a method of alternative dispute resolution in the United States. The seminar will explore the advantages and disadvantages of arbitration as compared to both mediation and litigation in the courts. The seminar will also address the statutory basis for U.S. arbitration; the nature and scope of arbitral jurisdiction; the nature of the arbitral process; techniques of effective advocacy in arbitral hearings; the enforcement of arbitral awards; and judicial review of arbitral proceedings. Students will also review a series of recent Supreme Court decisions in which the Court has limited the scope of judicial review of arbitral awards and clarified the ways in which arbitral agreements can limit liability (for example, by barring class actions).
    Winter 2014
    James R. Ferguson
  • Brief-writing and Appellate Advocacy Seminar

    LAWS 79905 - 01 (3) m, s, w, x
    This seminar will be devoted to the art of brief-writing and appellate advocacy. Topics will include how to select the best arguments, how to choose a theme and structure the facts and the argument, and how to write the brief in a way that it is clear, concise and persuasive on the first read. Grades will be based on two papers -- an opening brief and a reply.
    Spring 2014
    Michele Odorizzi
  • Buyouts

    LAWS 42602 - 01 (3) m, w, x
    In this seminar we will examine conflicts of interest in mergers and acquisitions, and especially in going private transactions in which publicly held companies are acquired by affiliates of private equity firms with the participation of the company's management or by controlling shareholders. Both types of transactions raise conflict of interest issues because some of the company's directors or officers, who are charged with protecting the public shareholders, may be accused of having interests adverse to those of the public shareholders. We will examine the methods that Delaware law has provided for dealing with these conflicts of interest and whether those methods are likely to be effective. We will also look at a variety of other issues raised by going private transactions, including why they occur, whether they are likely to be beneficial to shareholders in spite of the existence of conflicts of interest, the consequences to society of these transactions and certain conflict and other issues that can arise in transactions even if they are neither management nor controlling shareholder buyouts. Finally, we will examine the role of the lawyers and financial advisors who are involved in these transactions. Grades will be based on a paper and class participation. Some of the topics in this course will also be covered less intensively in Mergers and Acquisitions, but that course is not a prerequisite for this course and students may take both courses.
    Spring 2014
    Scott Davis
  • Canonical Ideas in Legal Thought

    LAWS 57013 - 01 (2) +, a, m, r, w
    This year-long research seminar is the equivalent of a research colloquium in a PhD program. During the Autumn quarter, students will read, discuss, and critique some of the most influential law review articles from the twentieth century, as well as newer papers that extend and apply those canonical ideas to modern legal problems. The readings will consist of a healthy mix of public law and private law, and various scholarly methodologies. During the Autumn quarter, students will write short reaction papers on the readings, and each student will once during the term facilitate the class discussion of an article, drawing on their outside research to do so. Students will also work with faculty to identify a topic for a substantial research paper. During the Winter quarter, the seminar will not meet in formal sessions, but each student will work on his or her research paper and will meet individually with the instructors to assess the paper’s progress. During the Spring quarter, the seminar will reconvene, and students will workshop their drafts (i.e., each student will circulate his or her draft in advance and answer questions from students and faculty). Students are expected to produce papers of publishable quality because the seminar’s ultimate goal is to prepare students for the process of entering the legal academy. Students will receive an Autumn quarter grade based on the reaction papers, discussion facilitation, and class participation. Students will receive a separate grade for the Winter and Spring quarters based on the quality of their research papers and class participation. Every student must enroll for the entire year; students may not drop the class after the Autumn quarter. Students may only enroll with the permission of the instructors. Students interested in enrolling should email Professors Abebe, Miles, and Strahilevitz a resume and a one-paragraph statement explaining why they would like to enroll in the seminar no later than August 20.
    Winter 2014
    Daniel Abebe, Thomas J. Miles, Lior Strahilevitz
  • Canonical Ideas in Legal Thought

    LAWS 57013 - 01 (2) +, a, m, r, w
    This year-long research seminar is the equivalent of a research colloquium in a PhD program. During the Autumn quarter, students will read, discuss, and critique some of the most influential law review articles from the twentieth century, as well as newer papers that extend and apply those canonical ideas to modern legal problems. The readings will consist of a healthy mix of public law and private law, and various scholarly methodologies. During the Autumn quarter, students will write short reaction papers on the readings, and each student will once during the term facilitate the class discussion of an article, drawing on their outside research to do so. Students will also work with faculty to identify a topic for a substantial research paper. During the Winter quarter, the seminar will not meet in formal sessions, but each student will work on his or her research paper and will meet individually with the instructors to assess the paper’s progress. During the Spring quarter, the seminar will reconvene, and students will workshop their drafts (i.e., each student will circulate his or her draft in advance and answer questions from students and faculty). Students are expected to produce papers of publishable quality because the seminar’s ultimate goal is to prepare students for the process of entering the legal academy. Students will receive an Autumn quarter grade based on the reaction papers, discussion facilitation, and class participation. Students will receive a separate grade for the Winter and Spring quarters based on the quality of their research papers and class participation. Every student must enroll for the entire year; students may not drop the class after the Autumn quarter. Students may only enroll with the permission of the instructors. Students interested in enrolling should email Professors Abebe, Miles, and Strahilevitz a resume and a one-paragraph statement explaining why they would like to enroll in the seminar no later than August 20.
    Spring 2014
    Daniel Abebe, Thomas J. Miles, Lior Strahilevitz
  • Child Exploitation and Human Trafficking

    LAWS 47103 - 01 (3) m, w, x
    This seminar provides a comprehensive, practical introduction to the history and present-day reality of child sexual exploitation, as well as to the interconnected web of domestic and transnational federal laws and law enforcement efforts launched in response to this global challenge. The seminar will use a text written by the professor and a colleague who have the distinctive perspective of two individuals who have spent their careers in the trenches investigating, prosecuting, and adjudicating these intricate and commonly emotional cases. The seminar will offer open debate about child sexual abuse by stripping it of its unhelpful, constricted definitions, and by candidly discussing the state of the law, the criminal justice process, and the treatment of offenders and victims. The seminar examines today's system of federal anti-exploitation laws; the connection between modern communications technologies, such as the Internet, and the rise in U.S. and foreign child exploitation; the unique challenges posed by transnational investigations; organized crime's increasing domination over the commercial sexual exploitation of children; the current state of the U.S. government's transnational anti-trafficking efforts; the myriad international legal instruments designed to enhance transnational enforcement efforts; how, during investigations and trials, to avoid re-injuring the child-victims; the hallmarks of an effective trial strategy; the most promising investigative and trial avenues for the defense; and, what contemporary research tells us about charging and sentencing-related issues, including victimization and recidivism rates. Taught by federal district court judge, Hon. Virginia M. Kendall.
    Winter 2014
    Virginia Kendall
  • Civil Rights Clinic: Police Accountability

    LAWS 90913 - 01 (1) +, a, s, w
    The Civil Rights and Police Accountability Project (PAP) is one of the nation’s leading law civil rights clinics focusing on issues of criminal justice. Through the lens of live-client work, students examine how and where litigation fits into broader efforts to improve police accountability and ultimately the criminal justice system. Students provide legal services to indigent victims of police abuse in federal and state courts. They litigate civil rights cases at each level of the court system from trial through appeals. Some students also represent children and adults in related juvenile or criminal defense matters. Students take primary responsibility for all aspects of the litigation, including client counseling, fact investigation, case strategy, witness interviews, legal research, pleadings and legal memoranda, discovery, depositions, motion practice, evidentiary hearings, trials, and appeals. A significant amount of legal writing is expected. Students work in teams on cases or projects, and meet with the instructor on at minimum a weekly basis. Students also take primary responsibility for the Clinic’s policy and public education work. PAP teaches students to apply and critically examine legal theory in the context of representation of people in need. It teaches students to analyze how and why individual cases of abuse occur and to connect them to systemic problems, often leading to “public impact” litigation and other strategies for policy reform. Through our immersion in live client work, we engage fundamental issues of race, class, and gender, and their intersection with legal institutions. We instruct students in legal ethics and advocacy skills. And we seek to instill in them a public service ethos, as they begin their legal careers. Students are required to complete, prior to their third year, Evidence, Criminal Procedure I, and the Intensive Trial Practice Workshop. Constitutional Law III is also recommended.
    Winter 2014
    Craig B. Futterman
  • Civil Rights Clinic: Police Accountability

    LAWS 90913 - 01 (1) +, a, s, w
    The Civil Rights and Police Accountability Project (PAP) is one of the nation’s leading law civil rights clinics focusing on issues of criminal justice. Through the lens of live-client work, students examine how and where litigation fits into broader efforts to improve police accountability and ultimately the criminal justice system. Students provide legal services to indigent victims of police abuse in federal and state courts. They litigate civil rights cases at each level of the court system from trial through appeals. Some students also represent children and adults in related juvenile or criminal defense matters. Students take primary responsibility for all aspects of the litigation, including client counseling, fact investigation, case strategy, witness interviews, legal research, pleadings and legal memoranda, discovery, depositions, motion practice, evidentiary hearings, trials, and appeals. A significant amount of legal writing is expected. Students work in teams on cases or projects, and meet with the instructor on at minimum a weekly basis. Students also take primary responsibility for the Clinic’s policy and public education work. PAP teaches students to apply and critically examine legal theory in the context of representation of people in need. It teaches students to analyze how and why individual cases of abuse occur and to connect them to systemic problems, often leading to “public impact” litigation and other strategies for policy reform. Through our immersion in live client work, we engage fundamental issues of race, class, and gender, and their intersection with legal institutions. We instruct students in legal ethics and advocacy skills. And we seek to instill in them a public service ethos, as they begin their legal careers. Students are required to complete, prior to their third year, Evidence, Criminal Procedure I, and the Intensive Trial Practice Workshop. Constitutional Law III is also recommended.
    Autumn 2013
    Craig B. Futterman
  • Civil Rights Clinic: Police Accountability

    LAWS 90913 - 01 (1) +, a, s, w
    The Civil Rights and Police Accountability Project (PAP) is one of the nation’s leading law civil rights clinics focusing on issues of criminal justice. Through the lens of live-client work, students examine how and where litigation fits into broader efforts to improve police accountability and ultimately the criminal justice system. Students provide legal services to indigent victims of police abuse in federal and state courts. They litigate civil rights cases at each level of the court system from trial through appeals. Some students also represent children and adults in related juvenile or criminal defense matters. Students take primary responsibility for all aspects of the litigation, including client counseling, fact investigation, case strategy, witness interviews, legal research, pleadings and legal memoranda, discovery, depositions, motion practice, evidentiary hearings, trials, and appeals. A significant amount of legal writing is expected. Students work in teams on cases or projects, and meet with the instructor on at minimum a weekly basis. Students also take primary responsibility for the Clinic’s policy and public education work. PAP teaches students to apply and critically examine legal theory in the context of representation of people in need. It teaches students to analyze how and why individual cases of abuse occur and to connect them to systemic problems, often leading to “public impact” litigation and other strategies for policy reform. Through our immersion in live client work, we engage fundamental issues of race, class, and gender, and their intersection with legal institutions. We instruct students in legal ethics and advocacy skills. And we seek to instill in them a public service ethos, as they begin their legal careers. Students are required to complete, prior to their third year, Evidence, Criminal Procedure I, and the Intensive Trial Practice Workshop. Constitutional Law III is also recommended.
    Spring 2014
    Craig B. Futterman
  • Class Action Controversies

    LAWS 93602 - 01 (2 to 3) m, w, x
    This seminar will address the legal principles that govern class action litigation in federal and state courts. The seminar will discuss the requirements of Rule 23, current issues and recent court decisions, legislative modifications to class action practice, constitutional principles applicable to class actions, and the legal, practical, and ethical issues that arise in class actions. Students will be evaluated based on class participation and their final option. Students have the option of submitting a seminar paper or taking an examination at the conclusion of the quarter. Students wishing to receive a third credit will need to submit additional written work.
    Winter 2014
    Michael Brody
  • Comparative Constitutional Design Seminar

    LAWS 50103 - 01 (3) m, r, w, x
    In this seminar, we will explore the considerations and challenges in designing a constitution. The first part of this seminar draws on leading legal, economic and political theories to explore the origins of constitutions: why do countries adopt written constitutions? And what explains their constitutional choices? The second part of the seminar explores different substantive constitutional design topics, or the different ways in which constitutions deal with rights, checks and balances, and the protection of ethnic minorities. The last part of the seminar addresses potential implications of constitutional design choices. We draw on interdisciplinary research to explore an important puzzle in constitutional design: why do governments comply with their constitutional commitments? And to what extent can smart constitutional design aid compliance? Every student has to select one country and become an expert on this country’s constitution over the course of the quarter. In the class discussions, students will have to apply various constitutional design theories to their country of expertise, and bring insights from this country into the discussion.
    Autumn 2013
    Mila Versteeg
  • Comparative Legal Institutions

    LAWS 50101 - 01 (3) r, w, x
    This course is designed to examine a range of legal institutions from a comparative and interdisciplinary perspective. It is not a traditional course in comparative law, in that it focuses not so much on particular rules of substantive law but on the structure of different legal systems and the consequences of those structural differences for law and society, especially for economic development. Readings will be drawn from legal and social science literature, including works from anthropology, economics, political science and sociology. The course will explicitly cover non-Western legal traditions to an extent not found in conventional comparative law courses. The course will conclude with reflections on what a comparative perspective tells us about American legal institutions. Course grades will be given on the basis of a take-home written exam, with a small component for class participation. There is a paper option.
    Winter 2014
    Tom Ginsburg
  • Computer Crime

    LAWS 68402 - 01 (2 to 3) m, w, x
    This seminar will explore the legal issues involved in the investigation and prosecution of computer crime. We will examine how computers and network technologies are challenging settled legal understandings of the Fourth Amendment, the First Amendment, and the laws of electronic surveillance. The first part of the seminar will address the prosecution of substantive computer crime, which falls into two general categories: computer misuse offenses and traditional crimes facilitated by computers. The second part of the seminar will cover computer crime procedure. We will evaluate the statutory and constitutional regimes that govern the investigation of computer crime, including the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, the Wiretap Act, and the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. Our primary source will be a casebook: ORIN KERR, COMPUTER CRIME LAW (3r ed. 2012). In addition to the casebook, I will be providing supplemental materials as listed in the syllabus. Students are required to participate in class sessions, prepare discussion papers, and write a paper on an approved topic. Students may opt to write a major research paper for three credits.
    Winter 2014
    William Ridgway
  • Constitutional Decisionmaking

    LAWS 50202 - 01 (3) +, m, r, s, w
    Students enrolled in this seminar work as courts consisting of five Justices each. During each of the first eight weeks of the quarter, the courts are assigned several hypothetical cases raising issues under either the Equal Protection Clause or the First Amendment's guarantee of freedom of speech and press. Each court must select in advance whether it will focus on equal protection or the First Amendment. All cases must be decided with opinions (concurring and dissenting opinions are, of course, permitted). The decisions may be premised on the legislative history of the amendment (materials on that history will be provided) and on any doctrines or precedents created by the Justices themselves. The Justices may not rely, however, on any actual decisions of the United States Supreme Court. The seminar is designed to give students some insight into the problems a justice confronts in collaborating with colleagues, interpreting an ambiguous constitutional provision, and then living with the doctrines and precedents he or she creates. Constitutional Law is not a prerequisite for participation in this seminar. Enrollment will be limited to three courts. Since the members of each court must work together closely under rigid time constraints, it is preferable for students to form their own complete courts. Students will complete a major research paper. First Meeting is on Thursday, March 27th from 12:30-1:30 in room C. Second Meeting is TBD.
    Spring 2014
    Geoffrey R. Stone