Administrative Law Courses
The courses listed below provide a taste of the Administrative Law courses offered at the Law School, although no formal groupings exist in our curriculum. This list includes the courses taught in the 2017-18 and 2018-19 school years. Not all of these courses are offered every year, but this list will give you a representative sample of the variety of courses we might offer over any two-year period. Other new courses will likely be offered during your time at the Law School.
PLEASE NOTE: This page does not include courses for the current academic year. To browse current course offerings, visit my.UChicago.
Abrams Environmental Law Clinic
Spring 2019, Mark N. Templeton and Robert A. Weinstock
Students in the Abrams Environmental Law Clinic fight against water pollution, promote clean energy, protect natural resources and human health, and address legacy contamination. Clinic students engage in a wide variety of activities to learn practical legal skills, such as conducting factual investigations, interviewing witnesses and preparing affidavits, reviewing administrative determinations, drafting motions, working with experts, arguing motions and presenting at trial or an administrative hearing, among other activities. 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. In addition to litigation, 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. Environmental Law is a co-requisite. A student enrolling in the Clinic for the first time should sign up for two credits; in subsequent quarters, she or he may enroll for one, two or three credits per quarter after consultation with clinic faculty.
- Autumn 2017, Mark N. Templeton and Robert A. Weinstock
- Winter 2018, Mark N. Templeton and Robert A. Weinstock
- Spring 2018, Mark N. Templeton and Robert A. Weinstock
- Autumn 2018, Mark N. Templeton and Robert A. Weinstock
- Winter 2019, Mark N. Templeton and Robert A. Weinstock
Spring 2019, Jennifer Nou
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 in-class examination.
- Autumn 2017, Nicholas Stephanopoulos
- Spring 2018, Jennifer Nou
Advanced Administrative Law
Spring 2019, Jennifer Nou
This seminar will explore contemporary issues and controversies in administrative law through recent cases, contemporary scholarship, and in-depth case studies. One aim of the course is to help participants develop greater familiarity with regulatory materials and a more grounded understanding of the practical development of regulatory policy. Students will have option between writing a major paper of 20-25 pages or a series of reaction papers. Class participation may also be considered in final grading. Prerequisite: Administrative Law
Advanced Topics in Financial Regulation
Winter 2018, Eric Posner
This seminar looks at recent topics in financial regulation with special attention to the continuing effects of the financial crisis of 2008. Among other topics, we will examine the LIBOR scandal, the litigation over financial crisis era bailouts, the European debt crisis, and the current push for financial deregulation. While there is no formal prerequisite, students should have some background in the law and some familiarity with financial concepts, or be willing to do some outside reading in order to catch up with the class.Final grade will be based on: a major paper, a series of short research papers.
Bankruptcy and Reorganization: The Federal Bankruptcy Code
Autumn 2018, Douglas Baird
This course studies the Federal Bankruptcy Code and the law of corporate reorganization. Topics include the rights of creditors in bankruptcy, the relationship between bankruptcy law and state law, the treatment of executory contracts, bankruptcy planning, the restructuring of corporations in Chapter 11, and the procedure for confirming plans of reorganization. There are no prerequisites for this course.
- Autumn 2017, Douglas Baird
Civil Rights Practicum
Spring 2019, Aziz Huq
In this practicum, students will engage in a range of research and analysis under the supervision of Prof. Huq, in relation to a number of active civil rights cases or other matters. Initial projects will include work on hate-crimes regulation. The aim is to cultivate experience in litigation and advocacy-related tasks in a real world setting, albeit without the structured format of a clinic.
- Autumn 2017, Aziz Huq
- Winter 2018, Aziz Huq
- Spring 2018, Aziz Huq
- Autumn 2018, Aziz Huq
- Winter 2019, Aziz Huq
Comparative Legal Institutions
Spring 2019, Thomas Ginsburg
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. In particular, we will focus on the economic impact of legal traditions. 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. Furthermore, American institutions are explicitly included in the comparison: this is not simply a course in foreign law. Assessment is by a three-hour take-home exam. There is an option to write a research paper sufficient to fulfill the substantial writing requirement; LLM, second-year and third-year students can exercise this option freely but only a limited number of first-year students may avail themselves of it.
- Spring 2018, Thomas Ginsburg
Complex Financial Institutions—the conundrum of "too big to fail?"
Spring 2019, Barry Zubrow
This seminar will examine how events during the financial crisis shaped the debate about global systemically important financial institutions and whether they are "too big to fail"; how current and proposed regulations in the US and EU have sought to address these issues; and what the implications are from the current debate over "repeal" of the Dodd-Frank Act. Final grade will be based on: a series of short research postings, class participation and a final team paper.
- Spring 2018, Barry Zubrow
Compliance and Regulatory Strategy
Spring 2018, Charles Senatore
Since the financial crisis of 2008, regulators and prosecutors around the world increasingly expect companies to have state of the art governance, risk and compliance programs as a condition for remaining in business and for avoiding liabilities for regulatory missteps. Increasingly, regulatory rules are becoming more complex and authorities are becoming more unforgiving, with stepped up efforts to secure criminal and civil penalties against companies, their executives, lawyers and auditors. For companies, such liability can at best result in plummeting share prices, and at worst the shutting down of an enterprise. For individuals, they can result in incarceration, fines, penalties and removal from the business. While many of the principles apply to all industries, the seminar will explore the regulatory and legal foundations for these programs primarily through the lens of the financial services sector, which includes banks, brokerage firms, investment companies and investment advisers. We will also explore how the design and execution of these programs can avoid or limit potential liabilities from regulatory and criminal authorities. From the perspective of a corporate executive, board member or counsel, students will develop the ability to understand the fundamentals of regulatory regimes overseeing these businesses, as well as strategies for successfully engaging the regulators. Students will consider the steps a firm should take to mitigate regulatory and reputation risk, including the importance of an effective corporate ethics program, as well as how, in the process, a firm can enhance its brand, meet the expectations of its board of directors and create value for its shareholders. The grade is based on a series of short reaction papers, attendance and class participation.While courses which contain elements of securities or financial services regulation would be helpful, they are not required. However, the course should be limited to students who have completed their first year, whether in the Law School, the Booth School of Business or other graduate level programs at the university.
Constitutional Law VII: Parent, Child, and State
Spring 2019, Emily Buss
This course considers the role that constitutional law plays in shaping children's development. Among the topics discussed are children's and parent's rights of expression and religious exercise; parental identity rights including rights associated with paternity claims, termination proceedings, assisted reproduction, and adoption; the scope of the state's authority to intervene to protect children, to regulate their conduct, or to influence their upbringing; and the role of race and culture in defining the family.
- Spring 2018, Emily Buss
Corporate Compliance and Business Integration
Autumn 2018, Forrest Deegan
This seminar explores the rapidly expanding scope of Corporate Compliance across industries and the evolving role of corporate compliance officers as business partners and culture champions. Study begins with a foundational overview of the relevant legal and policy mandates, proceeds to explore Corporate Compliance's role in operational oversight and risk mitigation, and finishes with an examination of Corporate Compliance's evolving role in enterprise risk, strategy and culture. The first section of the course will provide insight into the legal, regulatory and risk management considerations that have driven business organizations to develop and enhance their internal programs for identifying and managing compliance risks. The second section will focus on case studies from different industries, and from the separate perspectives of business leaders, regulators, consumers and employees. The final section of the course will focus on the intersection of compliance and organizational culture, and illustrate how to leverage the tools of policy, training, and leadership engagement to build cultures of integrity. The course will include academic, regulatory and business readings as well as interactive case studies, where students will apply practical solutions to real risk and corporate integrity challenges faced by multinational organizations in a variety of sectors and explore the consequences for the compliance function.This seminar will be taught by Forrest Deegan, Chief Ethics and Compliance Officer, at Abercrombie & Fitch.
Current Issues in Criminal and National Security Law
Winter 2019, Patrick Fitzgerald and Michael Scudder
This seminar covers a series of current issues in criminal and national security law, often comparing and contrasting the two approaches, with a particular focus on challenges arising from acts of terrorism and other national security prosecutions (including a focus on substantive terrorism offenses, espionage offenses as well as the leaking of classified information), a discussion of criminal and intelligence investigative tools (comparing Title III electronic surveillance with Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act ), application of constitutional principles to terrorism investigations and prosecutions (particularly the First, Fourth, Fifth and Sixth Amendments and the application of Miranda, Quarles and Corley decisions and certain state bar rules in that context), the President's war powers and congressional oversight (including discussions of drone strikes, law of war detention, and Presidential and Congressional authority to use military force), and in other select areas, including the Classified Information Procedures Act, and economic sanctions, and national security leaks. Each class will focus on a different topic, with advance reading assigned around each topic, and grading on the basis of two short reflection papers (3-5 pages each) and a final paper preferably written in the form of a U.S. Supreme Court opinion (20-25 pages, including a majority and dissent) on a select issue in criminal and national security law. Guest speakers will help facilitate discussion on certain topics. Pre-requisites: Criminal Law
- Winter 2018, Patrick Fitzgerald and Michael Scudder
The Demagogue and Executive Power
Autumn 2018, Eric Posner
This seminar explores the question of executive power through the figure of the demagogue, and the related phenomenon of populism. Taking a historical approach, we examine the role of the demagogue at several stages of American history: the founding, the Jeffersonian era, the Jacksonian era; the populist era; the New Deal; and the modern era. We ask, What is a demagogue? What is wrong with demagoguery? What is the relationship between the demagogue and the U.S. Constitution? What is the role of the demagogue in a democracy? We also look at some international comparisons. The readings will be mainly historical.Grades will be based on class participation and reaction papers.
Spring 2019, Nicholas Stephanopoulos
This course examines the law, both constitutional and statutory, that governs the American electoral system. Topics covered include the right to vote, reapportionment and redistricting, minority representation, the regulation of political parties, and campaign finance. The course draws heavily from both legal and political science scholarship. It addresses constitutional provisions including the First, Fourteenth, and Fifteenth Amendments, as well as key statutes such as the Voting Rights Act, the Federal Election Campaign Act, and the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act. Students will develop an understanding of not only election law doctrine, but also the theoretical and functional underpinnings of the American electoral system.
- Spring 2018, Nicholas Stephanopoulos
Employee Benefits Law
Autumn 2018, Charles Wolf
This seminar will provide an introduction to the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) and other federal statutes regulating employee benefit plans in the private sector. The course will cover many types of plans, including defined benefit pension plans, individual account retirement plans (such as 401(k) plans), medical plans, other welfare benefit plans and executive compensation programs. It will provide a basic understanding of fiduciary standards governing plan administration and the investment of plan assets; minimum standards for benefits and funding; benefit claim dispute resolution procedures and standards of judicial review; federal preemption of state laws; and key issues which arise in ERISA litigation. The course is intended for students interested in a broader labor and employment practice; a mergers and acquisitions or general corporate practice; or a civil litigation practice. Although our primary mission will be to prepare students for the practice of law, we also will explore whether the law governing employee benefit plans is operating effectively and in accordance with its stated purposes. Students will be graded on class participation and on short reaction and/or research papers (20-25 pages). There are no prerequisites required for this seminar.Students must submit either: a) a series of short reaction and research papers which must total at least 20-25 pages, including at least one research paper of 10 or more pages or b) a major research paper of at least 20-25 pages.
- Autumn 2017, Charles Wolf
Autumn 2018, James Whitehead
This seminar is designed to provide the student with an overview of the common law principles and leading federal and state statutes that govern the private-sector employment relationship. Among the topics to be covered are (1) the contractual nature of the employment relationship and the employment-at-will doctrine; (2) contractual, tort-based, and statutory erosions of the employment-at-will doctrine; (3) the contractual and common law duties and obligations owed by an employee to the employer; (4) wage and hour and employee leave statutes, including the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA); and (5) other employee protective statutes. This seminar supplements, but will not cover the topics presented in, the Law School's courses in Labor Law (Laws 43101), Employment Discrimination Law (Laws 43401), and Employee Benefits Law (Laws 55503), which are not prerequisites to enrollment. Enrollment will be limited to 20 students. The student's grade will be based on a final examination. Students wishing to earn 3 credits for the class may write a 10-12+ page research paper in addition to the final exam.
Employment Law Clinic
Spring 2019, Randall Schmidt
Randall D. Schmidt and his students operate the Clinic's Employment Law Clinic. The Clinic focuses primarily on pre-trial litigation and handles a number of individual cases and class actions. In individual cases, the Clinic represents clients in cases before the Illinois Department of Human Rights and the Illinois Human Rights Commission and seeks to obtain relief for clients from race, sex, national origin, and handicap discrimination in the work place. In the class actions, the Clinic represents groups of employees in employment and civil rights actions in federal court. Additionally, in its individual cases and law reform/impact cases, the Clinic seeks to improve the procedures and remedies available to victims of employment discrimination so that employees have a fair opportunity to present their claims in a reasonably expeditious way. To accomplish this goal, the Clinic is active in the legislative arena and participates with other civil rights groups in efforts to amend and improve state and federal laws. It is suggested, but not required, that all students in the Employment Law Clinic take the Employment Discrimination Law seminar. It is recommended that third-year students take, prior to their third year, either the Intensive Trial Practice Workshop or some other trial practice course. The student's grade is based on class participation. Academic credit varies and will be awarded according to the Law School's general criteria for clinical courses as described in the Law School Announcements and by the approval of the clinical faculty. Evidence is a prerequisite for 3L's in the clinic. The Intensive Trial Practice Workshop (or an equivalent trial practice course) is recommended for 3L's in the clinic.
- Autumn 2017, Randall Schmidt
- Winter 2018, Randall Schmidt
- Spring 2018, Randall Schmidt
- Autumn 2018, Randall Schmidt
- Winter 2019, Randall Schmidt
Energy Law and Policy
Spring 2018, Mark N. Templeton
Energy markets and regulation have undergone significant changes in the past 20 years in the United States in attempts to improve reliability, to reduce costs, and to address environmental impacts, while meeting increased demand. Focusing primarily on electric power, this course will introduce students to energy economics and the principles and administration of public utility regulation. The class will trace the historical development of the regulated electric industry, review traditional sources of energy used to generate electricity (water, coal, and natural gas), and examine the current structure of the electric industry and emerging issues, including wholesale and retail competition, environmental effects (including climate change), renewable energy, conservation and efficiency.
Energy Law Seminar
Autumn 2018, Shelby Gaille
The Energy Law Seminar exposes students to current issues facing energy industry practitioners. Topics covered include United States shale developments, international energy projects, facilities procurement/construction, the natural resources curse, energy finance challenges, and energy litigation/arbitration trends. The Energy Law Seminar also includes two competitive simulations: (1) shale/private equity simulation in which students are divided into management and private equity backers and seek to negotiate joint ventures; and (2) West Africa exploration simulation, in which teams bid on real petroleum licenses in West Africa, engage in a multilateral negotiation with other teams to acquire and divest license interests, and then drill wells by rolling dice to determine which of the 50 petroleum prospects are discoveries.The grade is based on in-class participation (including presentations and simulation performance), negotiation sessions between class meetings, written agreements/memoranda, and a final essay (in the form of a blog post).
Autumn 2018, Mark N. Templeton
This course introduces students to the laws, policies and theories related to environmental protection in the United States. No environmental, engineering or science background is required, and it is not necessary to take Administrative Law before or during enrollment in this course. The course reviews different, and often competing, objectives related to the environment: development and use of natural resources, preservation of nature, protection of human health, economic efficiency, and distributional equity. The course explores in depth how the common law and the major federal environmental statues (e.g. the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, etc.) address these objectives. The student's grade is based primarily on a final examination.
- Autumn 2017, Karen Bradshaw
Winter 2018, Lee Fennell
This seminar will focus on the law and policy of fair housing, broadly construed. Significant attention will be devoted to antidiscrimination laws in housing, including the federal Fair Housing Act. We will also explore existing and proposed policies for improving access of lower-income people to housing. The dynamics of segregation and concentrated poverty will be examined, as well as the effects of zoning and other land use controls. Additional topics may include urban squatting, rent control, gentrification, subprime lending, the siting of locally undesirable land uses, and the use of eminent domain in "blighted" areas. The student's grade will be based on class participation and a series of short papers. Students may not take this course pass/fail.
Financial Regulation Law
Spring 2019, Richard Epstein
This course will consider the regulation of banks and other financial institutions in the United States. It will start with the history and evolution of banking regulation in order to set the stage of the examining the regulatory responses to the recent financial crisis. Topic include an examination of the Dodd-Frank legislation, AS AMENDED, including the activities of the Consumer Fraud Protection Bureau and the complex bailouts cases, of both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and also AIG. The course will also cover various proposals for reform that have been proposed to deal with the current impasse.
Food and Drug Law and Policy
Spring 2019, Jack Bierig
This course explores legal and policy issues in the federal regulation of foods, drugs, medical devices, and other products coming within the jurisdiction of the FDA. It will examine substantive standards applicable to these products and procedural issues in the enforcement of these standards. It will also address the tension between state and federal regulation in this area, constitutional constraints on such regulation, the conflict between state tort law and federal regulation, and a variety of other issues relating to the development and marketing of regulated products. The student's grade is based on class participation and an in-class final examination or major paper of 20-25 pages.
- Spring 2018, Jack Bierig
Spring 2019, Omri Ben-Shahar
This seminar will examine issues relating to food law and food policy. Topic covered will include: food safety, food labeling, genetically modified agriculture, corn policy, regulation of food quality, factory farming, restaurant regulations, and more. Students will have to write an SRP paper of 20-25 pages and make a presentation in class.
Foreign Relations Law
Spring 2019, Eric Posner
This course examines the constitutional and statutory law regulating the conduct of American foreign relations. Topics include the allocation of foreign relations powers between the three branches of the federal government, the status of international law in U.S. courts, the scope of the treaty power, the validity of executive agreements, and the power to declare and conduct war. Grades will be based on a final examination. Class participation may also be considered in final grading.
- Spring 2018, Daniel Abebe
The Future of Voting Rights
Spring 2019, Nicholas Stephanopoulos
This seminar will cover the past, present, and future of one of the most important civil rights statutes ever passed: the Voting Rights Act. Topics to be addressed include: (1) the Act's constitutionality; (2) how the Act applies to redistricting; (3) how the Act applies to restrictions of the right to vote; and (4) the intricate relationships between descriptive representation for racial minority groups, substantive representation, and American political geography. Students may write papers of 20-25 pages either on the Act or on any topic pertaining to race and election law.Class participation may also be considered in final grading.
Greenberg Seminar: Crime and Politics in Charm City: A Portrait of the Urban Drug War
Spring 2018, Jonathan Masur and Richard McAdams
We will explore a series of works on urban crime, politics, and policing, with an emphasis on the City of Baltimore: David Simon, "Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets," Sudhir Venkatesh, "Gang Leader for a Day," Jill Loevy, "Ghettoside: A True Story of Murder in America," and all of "The Wire." We will focus particularly on the drug war - the economics and violence of the trade; the culture of the police bureaucracy; alternative law enforcement strategies such as informants and wiretapping; the politics of race, crime rates, and legalization; and the effects of addiction. But these works also examine the effects of declining blue collar jobs and weakening labor unions; the effects of race, incumbency, and corruption on local politics; the challenges and failures of urban education and child welfare agencies; and the role of the city newspaper in self-governance. Preference is given to 3L students. Graded Pass/Fail.
- Autumn 2017, Jonathan Masur and Richard McAdams
- Winter 2018, Jonathan Masur and Richard McAdams
Greenberg Seminar: The Law and Economics of Craft Beer
Spring 2019, Daniel Hemel and Adam Chilton
In the early 1980s, the United States was home to fewer than 100 breweries. Today, there are more than 6,000. This spread of small "craft" breweries has happened at a time when most other industries have been characterized by greater concentration. This seminar will explore the history of craft brewing as well as the legal and economic issues facing the industry today. Topics covered will include: Prohibition and its aftermath; the three-tier system of alcohol distribution; the 1978 excise tax exemption for home brewing and the craft beverage provisions in the December 2017 federal tax law; trademark issues in the craft beer industry; and ongoing conflicts regarding state regulation of brewpubs. The seminar also will compare U.S. and foreign laws regarding beer and will consider implications of international trade law for the beer industry.
- Autumn 2018, Daniel Hemel and Adam Chilton
- Winter 2019, Daniel Hemel and Adam Chilton
Greenberg Seminar: The Trump Presidency
Spring 2018, William Howell and Eric Posner
Donald Trump is the most divisive president of the modern era. After a tempestuous electoral campaign, he entered office with weak public support, and was immediately embroiled in a series of scandals. Does his presidency change American politics and constitutional understandings, or is he a "normal" president, appearances to the contrary? We will read recent books on the Trump presidency, focusing on his election, his early tenure, and his legal and political battles.
- Autumn 2017, William Howell and Eric Posner
- Winter 2018, William Howell and Eric Posner
Greenberg Seminar: Wine and the Law
Spring 2019, Thomas Ginsburg and Jonathan Masur
This seminar will consider the law and politics of wine production and regulation in the US and elsewhere. There will be an empirical research component. Graded Pass/Fail.
- Autumn 2018, Thomas Ginsburg and Jonathan Masur
- Winter 2019, Thomas Ginsburg and Jonathan Masur
Hopi Law Practicum
Spring 2018, Todd Henderson and Justin Richland
The Hopi Clerkship is a year-long opportunity for students to get first-hand experience with the complex challenges and unique opportunities present in the everyday work of contemporary tribal legal systems. Students will support the Hopi tribe in three distinct ways: (1) serving as law clerks to justices of the Hopi Appellate Court, doing legal research, writing bench memoranda, participating in the judges' conferences, and drafting opinions on live cases; (2) serving as law clerks to the criminal trial court judge, especially on matters related to the application of federal Fourth Amendment law to tribal police; and(3) serving as legal advisors to the Office of Cultural Preservation, working to support investigations and prosecution of Hopi cultural claims around the world in an attempt to return tribal patrimony.Students will do all their coursework and assigned casework at the University of Chicago with site visits to the respective Hopi legal institutions to attend oral arguments, present findings to Hopi tribal officials, and participate in judicial deliberations. In so doing, they will be directly involved in testing the socio-legal principles, theories and critiques they explore in class in the crucible of the work they do helping to lay the regulatory and legal foundations for Hopi tribal institutions. In this practicum, almost every project that a student will work on will involve important questions of first impression with respect to a wide variety of pressing, yet enduring sociolegal issues, including issues of constitutionalism (separations of powers, checks and balances, etc.), crime and punishment (criminal law enforcement and defendants' and victims' rights), civil procedure (due process, appellate procedure, motions and orders), private law (property, contract, family), pluralism (the role of Anglo-American vs. Hopi traditional norms, and alternative dispute resolution), among many others. Given the centrality of these issues to the philosophy, social science, and practice of law - whether in the context of indigenous self-governance and settler colonialism, or otherwise -we believe that there are few other opportunities like this one, where students will encounter, explore and work through, the profound governance and legal issues and discussions offered by the Hopi Clerkship.Co-requisite: American Indian Law
- Autumn 2017, Todd Henderson and Justin Richland
- Winter 2018, Todd Henderson and Justin Richland
Autumn 2018, Allison Tirres
This course explores the U.S. immigration system. The course will focus on the federal laws and policies that regulate the admission and exclusion of immigrants. Topics covered will include: the visa system, deportation and removal, the law of asylum, the role of the states in regulating migrants, and proposed reforms to the immigration system. The course will also consider how immigration law connects to both constitutional law and foreign policy.
- Spring 2018, Adam Chilton
Autumn 2018, Javier Rubinstein
This seminar provides a basic foundation in the law and mechanics of international commercial arbitration and international investment arbitration. It will give students an understanding of the substantive and strategic issues that frequently confront international arbitration practitioners. The Seminar covers, among other things, the crafting of international arbitration agreements, the relative advantages and disadvantages of ad hoc UNCITRAL-Rules arbitration and institutional arbitration (e.g., ICC, LCIA, CAS, ICSID). The seminar also addresses the rules of procedure that commonly govern international arbitration, including procedural issues that commonly arise in international arbitration, including the availability and extent of discovery, pre-hearing procedure, the presentation of evidence, and the enforcement of international arbitral awards. The Seminar also will cover the fundamentals of international investment arbitration, including the jurisdictional issues that commonly arise in investor-state arbitration and the types of treaty claims that are commonly asserted under international law. While there will be a fair amount of traditional lecture, the format of the Seminar will depend heavily upon active student participation, including a mock arbitration exercise. Students will be graded based upon the quality of their preparation for and participation in the Seminar, as well as the quality of a required paper (20-25 pages). This Seminar will satisfy part of the lesser of the school's two writing requirements, if substantial research and written work is completed.
- Autumn 2017, Javier Rubinstein
International Human Rights Clinic
Spring 2019, Claudia Flores and Nino Guruli
The International Human Rights Clinic works for the promotion of social and economic justice globally and in the United States. The Clinic uses international human rights laws and norms, other substantive law, and multidimensional strategies to draw attention to human rights violations, develop practical solutions and promote accountability on the part of state and non-state actors. The Clinic works with clients and organizational partners through advocacy campaigns, research and litigation in domestic, foreign, and international tribunals. Working in project teams, students develop and hone essential lawyering skills, including oral advocacy, fact-finding, research, legal and non-legal writing, interviewing, media advocacy, cultural competency and strategic thinking. Some students may have the option (but are not required) to undertake international or domestic travel in connection with their projects during the Autumn, Winter or Spring quarter breaks. Students may enroll for up to three credits a quarter. New students should plan to take the clinic for three quarters for a minimum of two credits each quarter. Returning students may enroll for one credit each quarter.International Human Rights Law and Public International Law are recommended but not required co requisites.
- Autumn 2017, Claudia Flores
- Winter 2018, Claudia Flores and Nino Guruli
- Spring 2018, Claudia Flores and Nino Guruli
- Autumn 2018, Claudia Flores and Nino Guruli
- Winter 2019, Claudia Flores and Nino Guruli
Winter 2019, Laura Weinrib
This course examines the statutory, administrative, and judicial law governing collective labor relations. The principal subjects are union organizing and collective bargaining, with particular attention to the National Labor Relations Act. Students consider the strategies adopted by labor groups, employers, and legal actors in response to evolving economic and social conditions. The course draws on historical and comparative perspectives to evaluate emerging alternatives to the existing labor law regime.
Law and Economic Development
Spring 2019, Anup Malani
Why do some nations perform better than others, whether measured by income, happiness, health, environmental quality, educational quality, freedom, etc.? We explore the proximate causes of inequality across countries, including the role of human capital, natural resources, technology and market organization. We also explore the root causes of long term differences in welfare. We will consider the role of geography (e.g., location in tropical areas) and technological development (e.g., the impact of plow agriculture) on welfare. We will spend a substantial amount of time on the role of institutions, broadly defined, on development. We will explore the value of state capacity, democracy, and the common law. We will study the impact of disruptions such as the slave trade, colonialism and war. Ultimately, we will try to understand the implications of each explanation for development policy. Time permitting, we will also consider consider optimal, second-best rules for countries with weak state capacity and limited rule of law.Students will be required to complete a review and critical analysis of the literature on a specific topic in development (20-25 pages). The topic must be approved by the professor.
- Spring 2018, Thomas Ginsburg and Anup Malani
Law and Public Policy: Case Studies in Problem Solving
Autumn 2018, Stephen Patton
This class examines the intersection of law and public policy and the lawyer's role in helping to formulate and defend public policy choices, using recent, real-world problems based on the instructor's experience as Corporation Counsel for the City of Chicago and senior legal advisor to Mayor Rahm Emanuel. While the course will be conducted in a seminar/discussion format, a significant portion of each class will be devoted to hands-on role-playing in which students will play the role of legal advisors to an elected official, grappling with and proposing solutions to vexing issues of public policy.While this course may be of particular interest to students who are interested in public service and public policy-making, its emphasis on developing students' analytical and problem-solving skills and on providing hands-on, practical experience in advising clients on complex issues should be of benefit to any student, regardless of interests and career objectives. Providing legal analysis and advice and counseling clients on available options are a critical part of almost every legal career, whether as a litigator or transactional lawyer in a private firm or as in-house counsel for a corporation or not-for-profit.Assigned reading will include press articles, proposed legislation, briefs and pleadings, and other materials concerning the case studies/public policy issues that will be examined. Students will be expected to identify and analyze legal issues and limits, competing legal and policy interests, and possible policy alternatives and advise their "client" accordingly. Grades will be based on class participation and performance in role-playing exercises and short (5 page) reaction papers concerning three of the case studies that will be examined.
Law, Social Work, and the Legal Regulation of the Social Work Profession
Winter 2018, Israel Doron
In recent years, there has been a general shift towards integration and growing cooperation between lawyers and social workers, both professionally and ideologically. However, there are still tensions and gaps between the ways legal and social work professionals view their inter-relationships. This course will examine the different intersections between law and social work, and the ways the law attempts to regulate the social work profession. The analysis will use both American and Israeli legal examples, and will try to compare the different approaches to the legal regulation of social work in both countries.
Local Government Law
Spring 2018, Julie Roin
This course examines the law regarding the provision of public goods and services at the state and local level. It explores the way in which local government law addresses the issues of what services a local government should provide, which residents should receive those services, who pays for the services provided, and how these decisions are reached. In the process, it explores the relationship among federal, state, and local governments, with particular emphasis on judicial analysis of the constitutional and statutory basis of those relationships.
Oil and Gas Law
Winter 2018, Richard Helmholz
The basic law relating to the exploration, production, and development of oil and gas. The principal topics covered are: (1) ownership interests in natural resources, (2) leasing and field development, (3) the classification and transfer of production interests, and (4) regulation of field operation -- pooling, unitization, and environmental controls. Taxation and post-production marketing controls are not covered.
Poverty and Housing Law Clinic
Spring 2019, Lawrence Wood
This clinic, conducted over two sequential quarters, exposes students to the practice of poverty law by giving them the opportunity to work on housing cases at LAF, the Midwest's largest provider of free civil legal services to people who are living in poverty or otherwise vulnerable. Students may be be asked to attend administrative grievance hearings, represent tenants facing unwarranted evictions, and prevent landlords from performing lockouts or refusing to make necessary repairs. All students will be expected to interview clients, prepare written discovery, conduct research, and draft motions. In addition to working 12 hours a week at LAF, students will attend a weekly two-hour class to learn about subsidized housing programs, eviction actions, housing discrimination, representing tenants with disabilities, the intersection between domestic violence and housing, and the extensive and often misunderstood connection between criminal law and housing.
- Winter 2019, Lawrence Wood
Winter 2019, Saul Levmore
This course focuses on the relationship between modern perspectives on voting and interest groups on the one hand and legislation and judicial interventions on the other. Public choice is essentially the science of collective decision-making, and it comes with several well developed tools of analysis. With these tools, and that perspective, we revisit the interactions between legislatures and judges, democracy's attempt to solve certain problems, and the roles played by a variety of legal doctrines and constitutional institutions (from takings law to the meaning of precedents and to the way we structure appeals). As the course proceeds, we explore specific topics in law, such as the possibility of judicial vote-trading, the role of referenda in some jurisdictions but not others, and the role of precedent itself. Grades will be based on a final examination.
- Spring 2018, Saul Levmore
Public International Law
Autumn 2018, Mary Ellen O'Connell
International law is the system of rules, principles and procedures that regulate activity at the inter-state level. The system plays a critical role in contemporary life, effecting issues of war and peace, the global economy, human rights, and the natural environment. International law is a complete system of law, distinctive from national legal systems. The main objective of the course is to provide a comprehensive overview of the system by introducing how international law is made, applied, and enforced. The course will also introduce the four major subfields. Additional objectives include:• Learning about the nature and purpose of international law by comparing international law to other legal systems and by reviewing various theories of law;• Understanding the relationship between the general principles and processes that characterize the system as a whole and the subfields of war/peace, economy, human rights, and environment;• Understanding the strengths and weaknesses of the systems as well as creatively considering how to enhance the effectiveness of the international legal system; and • Preparing for the practice of international law.
- Autumn 2017, James Gathii
Public Land Law
Autumn 2018, Richard Helmholz
This course introduces the law governing public lands in the United States, including the preservation and the exploitation of the natural resources on those lands. The course deals with the administrative structures and the legal doctrines that have been developed to control use and enjoyment of the public lands. It takes up selected subjects to illustrate how the system works. Among possible subjects for inclusion are: the national parks, timber policy, grazing rights, mining law, protection of wildlife, and wilderness preservation. The choice of subjects to be studied will depend in large part on the interests of the students who enroll.
Regulation of Sexuality
Spring 2019, Mary Anne Case
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 of 20-25 pages, series of short papers, or final in-class examination, with class participation taken into account.
- Spring 2018, Mary Anne Case
The Role and Practice of the State Attorney General
Spring 2019, Michael Scodro and Lisa Madigan
All 50 States and the District of Columbia have an Attorney General, each of whom enjoys broad discretion over a range of legal issues. This seminar will address the institutional role of these officials, including their status within their respective state systems and their relationship to the federal government. The course will also address a host of critical and often controversial areas-including civil rights, criminal justice, consumer fraud, and environmental regulation-where state Attorneys General have come to play a leading role on the local and national stage. Students will be graded based on class participation and a final paper of 20-25 pages.
Supreme Court Strategy, Administrative Jurisprudence, and the Law
Spring 2019, Robert Gasaway
This seminar has two goals. First, it will introduce concepts of big-case Supreme Court strategy with the aid of guest appearances by eminent ,judges, lawyers, and business executives. Scheduled to appear are Judge Amy Coney Barrett (Seventh Circuit), Mary Tolan, General Partner, Chicago-Pacific Founders and member, University of Chicago Board of Trustees; Justice Judith French (Ohio Supreme Court), W. Thomas Haynes, former General Counsel Coca-Cola North American and Executive Director, Coca-Cola Bottlers' Association, Tracy Genesen, Wine Institute General Counsel, and Jack McMackin, Williams & Jensen, and Ashley C. Parrish, King & Spalding. Second, we will explore from a jurisprudential standpoint today's administrative-law controversies -- above all, the fundamental challenges to traditional non-delegation and Chevron deference doctrines. The unifying theme for these (seemingly) distinct topics is the need to delve at least one layer of legal logic deeper when confronting difficult problems of theory and practice. Grades will be based on papers. Readings will be drawn from traditional and non-traditional legal materials. Administrative Law (whether taken previously or concurrently) is helpful; not required. A major paper of 20-25 pages is required.
Telecommunications and Internet Law
Autumn 2017, Joan Neal
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, including the on-going discussion between the FCC and the courts regarding net neutrality. 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 proctored exam.
Topics in State and Local Finance
Winter 2019, Julie Roin
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, and municipal bankruptcy. Final grade will be based on a series of short reaction papers and class participation.Students are required to write four 3-5 page papers over the course of the quarter. The papers should be based on the assigned readings, rather than independent research.
- Spring 2018, Julie Roin
U.S. Taxation of International Transactions
Winter 2019, Julie Roin
This course provides a survey of the US tax treatment of both inbound (foreign investment in the US) and outbound (US investment abroad) transactions. Though the principal focus of the class is on the US tax rules, some attention is paid to the interaction between US and foreign tax systems through the operation of the tax credit and tax treaties. Introductory Income Tax is a recommended prerequisite. Students' grades will be based on a three-hour examination.
- Winter 2018, Julie Roin
Winter 2018, Thomas Ginsburg
Wine raises a host of national and international regulatory issues, from importing to trademarks to constitutional federalism. This seminar will work through the basics of Wine law in the United States, with a section on relevant international issues as well.Final grade will be based on: a major paper, a series of short research papers, class participation.
Work Law in the New Economy
Spring 2018, HIba Hafiz
This seminar focuses on how labor law is adapting (or failing to adapt) to changes in the New Economy workplace. It touches on a number of themes. First, it looks at changes in the employment relationship and their implications for labor law and collective organizing. The rise of flexible or "gig" employment in the past decade and movement away from internal labor market job structures and the assumption of long-term, single-firm employment invites broader inquiry into the framework of labor regulation, including collective bargaining law, employer-sponsored benefits, and the social safety net. The seminar examines these changes as well as their broader implications. Second, the seminar considers how the labor law has accommodated the changing dynamics of employment contracting over time as they have differentially impacted women and minorities' experience at work and access to economic opportunities. Finally, the seminar explores the role of law in income inequality more broadly. This section studies the impact of labor regulation on income inequality as well as other elements of our regulatory regime. The seminar will meet weekly, with readings to be assigned. Students will be required to write brief response pieces to four of the weekly readings, and to prepare a research paper on a topic to be selected in consultation with the instructor.