Legal Practice and Ethics Courses
The courses listed below provide a taste of the Legal Practice and Ethics courses offered at the Law School, although no formal groupings exist in our curriculum. This list includes the courses taught in the 2020-21 and 2021-22 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.
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- Abrams Environmental Law Clinic
- Accounting and Financial Analysis
- Advanced Advocacy: Building and Using Your Advocate's Toolbox
- Advanced Civil Procedure
- Advanced Contracts: Contract Governance and Business Strategy
- Advanced Evidence: Key Legal Principles and Their Practical Application
- Advanced Legal Research
- Advanced Legal Writing
- Advanced Restructuring Practice: Legal and Financial Strategies
- Brief-writing and Appellate Advocacy Seminar
- Business Planning
- Case Studies in Professional Responsibility
- Civil Rights Clinic: Police Accountability
- Civil Rights Practicum
- Class Action Controversies
- Communications and Advocacy for Lawyers
- Constitutional Decisionmaking
- The Constitutional Rights of Minors from the Minors' Point of View
- Contract Drafting and Review
- Contract Governance
- Contract Law for LLM Students
- Corporate Compliance and Business Integration
- Criminal and Juvenile Justice Project Clinic
- Derivatives, Repo, and Prime Brokerage - Negotiation and Practical Analysis
- Divorce Practice and Procedure
- Editing and Advocacy
- Entrepreneurship and the Law
- Estate Planning And Drafting
- Ethics for Transactional Lawyers
- Exoneration Project Clinic
- Federal Criminal Justice Clinic
- Federal Criminal Justice Practice and Issues
- Fundamentals of In-House Counsel
- Global Human Rights Clinic
- Government Integrity and Transparency Seminar
- Hacking for Defense
- Hopi/Alaska Law Practicum
- Housing Initiative Transactional Clinic
- Immigrants' Rights Clinic
- Innovation Clinic
- Innovation Fund Associates Program Practicum
- Institute for Justice Clinic on Entrepreneurship
- Intensive Contract Drafting Workshop
- Intensive Trial Practice Workshop
- International Arbitration
- Jenner & Block Supreme Court and Appellate Clinic
- Judicial Opinion Writing
- Kirkland & Ellis Corporate Lab Clinic
- Law and Public Policy: Case Studies in Problem Solving
- Legal Elements of Accounting
- Legal Profession
- Legal Profession: Ethics
- Legal Profession: Ethics in Government and Public Interest Legal Practice
- Legal Spanish: Public Interest Law in the US
- Litigation Laboratory
- Modern Professional Responsibility
- Moot Court Boot Camp
- Partnership Taxation
- Poverty and Housing Law Clinic
- Presence: Performance Skills for Lawyers
- Pretrial Litigation: Strategy and Advocacy
- Private Equity Transactions: Issues and Documentation
- Professional Responsibility and the Legal Profession
- Professional Responsibility: Representing Business Organizations
- Prosecution and Defense Clinic
- Restructuring in Bankruptcy: Strategy and Tactics
- The Role and Practice of the State Attorney General
- Securities and Exchange Commission Investor Advocacy Project
- Strategic Considerations in Securities and Corporate Governance Litigation
- Strategies and Processes of Negotiations
- Structuring Venture Capital, Private Equity, and Entrepreneurial Transactions
- Trade Secrets and Restrictive Covenant Litigation
- Trial Advocacy
- U.S. Supreme Court: Theory and Practice
- Workshop: Legal Scholarship
- World Bank Practicum
- Writing and Research in the US Legal System
Abrams Environmental Law Clinic
Students in the Abrams Environmental Law Clinic promote clean energy, fight against water pollution, protect natural resources and human health, and address legacy contamination. Students 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. The Clinic represents regional and national environmental organizations and individuals and often works with co-counsel. 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. While the course does not have any pre-requisites, students are strongly encouraged to take an environmental law, energy law, and/or administrative law courses at some point during their time in the clinic. A student enrolling in the Clinic for the first time should sign up for two credits; in subsequent quarters, the student may enroll for one, two or three credits per quarter after consultation with clinic faculty. Evaluation based on legal research and writing, oral presentation and advocacy. Participation may be considered in final grading.
- Spring 2022: Mark N. Templeton and Robert A. Weinstock
- Winter 2022: Mark N. Templeton and Robert A. Weinstock
- Autumn 2021: Mark N. Templeton and Robert A. Weinstock
- Spring 2021: Mark N. Templeton and Robert A. Weinstock
- Winter 2021: Mark N. Templeton and Robert A. Weinstock
- Autumn 2020: Mark N. Templeton and Robert A. Weinstock
- Spring 2020: Mark N. Templeton and Robert A. Weinstock
- Winter 2020: Mark N. Templeton and Robert A. Weinstock
- Autumn 2019: Mark N. Templeton and Robert A. Weinstock
- Winter 2019: Mark N. Templeton and Robert A. Weinstock
- Autumn 2018: Mark N. Templeton and Robert A. Weinstock
- Spring 2018: Mark N. Templeton and Robert A. Weinstock
- Winter 2018: Mark N. Templeton and Robert A. Weinstock
- Autumn 2017: Mark N. Templeton and Robert A. Weinstock
Accounting and Financial Analysis
This course is designed to quickly introduce you to (or, preferably, refresh your knowledge of) basic financial accounting [first two weeks of class] and then aims to aggressively increase your ability to be a highly sophisticated user of financial statements. After taking this course, you should improve your ability to determine a firm's accounting policy for a particular type of transaction and to determine how that policy choice affects its primary financial statements. You will also learn how to question whether these effects fairly reflect the underlying economics of the firm's transactions. Asking these questions involves an interplay between accounting, economics, finance, law and business strategy. You should therefore greatly improve your ability to use an accounting report as part of an overall assessment of the firm's strategy and the potential rewards and risks of dealing with the firm. It is REQUIRED that students registering for this course have a thorough exposure to accounting course work, at least at the level provided by the Booth course Financial Accounting (B30000). Fundamentals of Accounting for Attorneys (LAWS 79112 or 53260) does not provide a sufficient foundation for this course. Students who have not taken B30000, but feel they have taken an equivalent level of accounting coursework, must petition for a waiver from Professor Berger at Philip.firstname.lastname@example.org.
This class has a final exam and a series of reaction papers. Participation may be considered in final grading.
- Spring 2022: Philip Berger
- Spring 2021: Philip Berger
- Spring 2020: Philip Berger
- Spring 2019: Philip Berger
- Spring 2018: Philip Berger
Advanced Advocacy: Building and Using Your Advocate's Toolbox
The seminar will illustrate the many ways in which an argument is much more than just "the automatic gainsaying of anything the other person says." We will explore not only the many forms of argument (persuasion, evidence-based, push/shove, Talmudic, misdirection), but also the many considerations necessary to win (forum, timing, deposition vs. trial, insurance coverage, leverage). We will use arguably (and inarguably) the best sources to build an advocate's toolbox: classical (Bible, Talmud); historical (Gettysburg Address, Letter from a Birmingham Jail, The Murder of William of Norwich); and popular culture (My Cousin Vinny, Monty Python's Argument Clinic). Students will use their toolbox in argument simulations, including Trolley Problem permutations, Headline Rewrite, and "Would I Lie to You?"
This seminar requires a series of reaction papers. Students who wish to earn three credits must also take an exam in addition to writing the papers. Participation will be considered in final grading.
- Spring 2022: Robert D. Cheifetz
- Spring 2021: Robert D. Cheifetz
Advanced Civil Procedure
This course examines salient features of major civil litigation from both a practitioner's and a policymaker's perspective. Broadly, these features fall into two categories: issues with forum and aggregation on the one hand, and problems with the collection and production of evidence on the other. Topics in the first category include class actions, multi-district litigation, and arbitration. Topics in the second category include electronic discovery, expert witnesses, and preservation of evidence. In addition, this course studies how the federal rulemaking process, statutes, and judicial decisions compete to define the procedures that govern civil litigation. The student's grade is based on a final examination with limited consideration of class participation.
- Winter 2021: William H. J. Hubbard
- Autumn 2018: William H. J. Hubbard
- Autumn 2017: William H. J. Hubbard
Advanced Contracts: Contract Governance and Business Strategy
This class in advanced contracts focuses on how to negotiate, structure and govern contracts with an eye towards creating value for one's client. It covers core doctrinal concepts that strongly affect contract structure and quickly moves on to explore strategic aspects of commercial contracting including how one chooses a partner, devises a negotiation strategy, and structures the key work-a-day contract provisions that facilitate commercial cooperation, encourage product and process innovation, and lead to the creation of value creating deals. Emphasis is placed on the role that nonlegal sanctions play in contract governance and management as well as on the limits of the legal system in many contractual settings. Students will work sometimes individually, but often in teams, to complete assignments based on case studies of real deals and will write both individual and group based memoranda. There is no exam. Grading is 60% individual written work, and 40% team work (oral and written) as well as class participation. Students will have the opportunity to advise a live client on a deal, advise inside counsel on an outsourcing deal, and get feedback on a crisis management project from a leading consultant and a seasoned general counsel.
- Spring 2021: Lisa Bernstein
Advanced Evidence: Key Legal Principles and Their Practical Application
This class will focus on advanced evidence principles and problems through experiential learning (learning by doing), using real-world issues that arose during a four-week trial of a case the instructor recently tried, Ramirez, et al. v. U.S. Immigration Customs Enforcement, as well as a case file and selected problems from the National Institute of Trial Advocacy. Completion of the Law School's course on Evidence is a prerequisite for this course. Classes will typically consist of: (1) a lecture concerning the topic(s) for that day, which will focus not only on the relevant law, but also practical considerations and practice tips and real-world anecdotes and illustrations; (2) role-playing problems in which students will argue in support of and against evidentiary objections and motions in limine, and conduct brief directs and cross-examinations laying the foundation for and opposing the admissibility of various types of evidence; and (3) feedback concerning the role-playing performances and discussion of the issues they raise. Topics that will be covered include: the authentication and admissibility of exhibits, including laying the foundation for the admission of business records, summaries, demonstratives, and other types of exhibits; objections, motions in limine and offers of proof; identifying and overcoming hearsay objections; experts and opinion testimony, including admissibility, expert disclosures and reports, and the structure and strategy of expert directs; and impeachment and rehabilitation. Typical assignments will include reading one or two key cases or excerpts from leading texts and preparing for the role-playing problems on the subject(s) for that class. Grades will be based on class participation and role-playing performances (70%) and three short (5-page) written assignments (10% per assignment, 30% in total).
In addition to the two required textbooks students should also have a copy of the Federal Rules of Evidence that includes the Advisory Committee Notes. They should have this already from their course in Evidence, which is a prerequisite for this course.
- Spring 2022: Stephen R. Patton
Advanced Legal Research
The purpose of this seminar is to enhance students' knowledge of legal sources and to develop their ability to find the relevant law on a legal issue. The seminar will cover the basic categories of legal research in depth and with a focus on practical skills and efficiency, including statutes, administrative law, legislative history, cases, and secondary sources. As a learning outcome of the course, students will be able to demonstrate the ability to conduct legal research and, more specifically, will expand their understanding of research resources in a variety of areas, improve their skills in using legal research tools, and develop extensive research knowledge in at least one area from their work on a final research paper. The seminar will be limited to twenty-five students with priority to third year students. To receive credit for this seminar, students must complete research assignments and projects, submit a final research paper, and participate in course meetings . Students may earn either 2 or 3 credits for this seminar depending upon the assignments and projects completed and the length of their final paper.
- Winter 2022: Sheri Lewis
- Autumn 2021: Scott Vanderlin and Todd Ito
- Winter 2021: Sheri Lewis
- Autumn 2020: Todd Ito and Scott Vanderlin
- Winter 2020: Scott Vanderlin and Todd Ito
- Autumn 2019: Todd Ito
- Winter 2019: Sheri Lewis
- Autumn 2018: Todd Ito
- Winter 2018: Sheri Lewis
- Autumn 2017: Todd Ito
Advanced Legal Writing
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 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 period begins. This course satisfies the Writing Project writing requirement. Legal Research and Writing is a pre-requisite.
- Spring 2022: Elizabeth Duquette
- Spring 2021: Elizabeth Duquette
- Spring 2020: Elizabeth Duquette
- Spring 2019: Elizabeth Duquette
- Spring 2018: Elizabeth Duquette
Advanced Restructuring Practice: Legal and Financial Strategies
Complex corporate restructurings will almost always involve a mix of legal, business, and financial advice. This seminar will focus on identifying practical issues faced by restructuring lawyers in connection with fundamental aspects of restructuring practice, including: (i) identifying a capital structure, capital structure problems, and their solutions; (ii) the key legal relationships between a borrower and its creditors and between the creditors themselves; (iii) what happens when a borrower is running out of cash; and (iv) the recent trend in so-called "Liability Management" transactions.
This class requires a series of reaction papers. Participation may be considered in final grading.
Prerequisites: Bankruptcy (recommended but not required); Secured Transactions (recommended but not required).
- Winter 2022: Ryan Dahl
- Winter 2021: Ryan Dahl
Brief-writing and Appellate Advocacy Seminar
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.
- Autumn 2021: Michele Odorizzi
- Autumn 2019: Michele Odorizzi
- Winter 2019: Michele Odorizzi
- Winter 2018: Michele Odorizzi
This seminar develops and applies the student's knowledge of taxation and corporate and securities law in the solution of a series of transactional problems involving typical steps in business formation and rearrangement. The problems include the formation of a closely held company; the transition to public ownership of the corporation; executive compensation arrangements; the purchase and sale of a business; and mergers, tender offers, and other types of combination transactions. Small-group discussions and lectures are employed. The student's grade is based on a final examination; students may earn an additional credit by writing a paper on a topic approved by the instructors. The student must have taken (or be taking concurrently) Business Organizations and Corporate Tax I or receive instructor approval. This class has a final exam (2 credits). To receive 3 credits students must additionally write a research paper of 10-12 pages.
- Winter 2022: Keith Crow and Anthony V. Sexton
- Winter 2020: Keith Crow and Anthony V. Sexton
- Winter 2018: Keith Crow and Anthony V. Sexton
Case Studies in Professional Responsibility
The course will provide case studies in professional responsibility including a deep dive into issues that new and experienced lawyers will revisit on a regular basis, such as conflicts of interest and confidentiality, as well as the responsibilities that each practitioner owes to the profession and each other. The course will satisfy the Professional Responsibility curriculum requirement. We will focus on ethical dilemmas that are likely to arise early in your legal careers and ground our discussion with reference to the Rules of Professional Conduct. This class will have a final exam and reaction papers. Participation may be considered in final grading.
- Spring 2021: Amelia D. Runyan
- Spring 2020: Amelia D. Runyan
Civil Rights Clinic: Police Accountability
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. Participation may be considered in final grading.
- Spring 2022: Craig Futterman
- Autumn 2021: Craig Futterman
- Spring 2021: Craig Futterman
- Winter 2021: Craig Futterman
- Autumn 2020: Craig Futterman
- Spring 2020: Craig Futterman
- Winter 2020: Craig Futterman
- Winter 2019: Craig Futterman
- Autumn 2019: Craig Futterman
- Spring 2019: Craig Futterman
- Winter 2019: Craig Futterman
- Autumn 2018: Craig Futterman
- Spring 2018: Craig Futterman
- Winter 2018: Craig Futterman
- Autumn 2017: Craig Futterman
Civil Rights Practicum
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. Students will be evaluated based on written work, collaboration, and analysis. Questions should be directed to Prof. Huq.
- Spring 2021: Aziz Huq
- Winter 2021: Aziz Huq
- Spring 2019: Aziz Huq
- Winter 2019: Aziz Huq
- Autumn 2018: Aziz Huq
- Spring 2018: Aziz Huq
- Winter 2018: Aziz Huq
- Autumn 2017: Aziz Huq
Class Action Controversies
The purpose of this seminar is to understand the rules applicable to class action litigation, the major doctrinal and policy issues that influence class action litigation, and the strategic, ethical, and practical considerations that judges, class counsel, and litigants face in class action litigation. Each week, we will address topics in class action law that bear on these issues.
Students taking the class for 2 credits will complete 2-3 reaction papers. Students taking class for 3 credits will complete a substantial writing project. Students completing the three credit option can receive writing project credit. Participation may be considered in final grading.
- Autumn 2021: Michael T. Brody
- Autumn 2020: Michael T. Brody
- Autumn 2019: Michael T. Brody
Communications and Advocacy for Lawyers
No skill is more important for a lawyer than communication, and this is especially true when lawyers are engaged in public advocacy. Students in this hands-on seminar will develop skills in writing, analysis, and presentation geared toward advocacy. Students will take on the role of a spokesperson for an organization (non-profit, business, or law firm) and learn to advocate for that organization
though writing op-eds, press releases, blog posts, and communications plans; preparing and delivering a presentation and slide decks; and engaging through media interviews and crisis communications. Topics covered will include creating and adjusting communications based on audience and medium; writing persuasively, especially for non-legal audiences; communications plan development, media training, and public speaking with and without preparation. Students will be expected to speak before the class and outsiders, write on a weekly basis, and edit each other's work. Students will be graded on quality of work product, participation in class, and improvement over the class time, with the majority of the grade coming from a final presentation and slide deck and a capstone communications plan.
- Winter 2022: Marsha Nagorsky
- Winter 2020: Marsha Nagorsky
- Winter 2019: Marsha Nagorsky
- Winter 2018: Marsha Nagorsky
Students enrolled in the seminar will work as "courts" consisting of five "Justices" each. During each of the first eight weeks of the quarter, each court will be assigned two hypothetical cases raising issues under the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. All cases must be decided with opinion (concurring and dissenting opinions are permitted). The decisions may be premised on the "legislative history" of the Equal Protection Clause (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. Enrollment will be limited to three courts. Since the members of each court must work together closely under rigid time constraints, students must sign up as five-person courts. This seminar will not have regularly-scheduled classes (except for introductory and concluding meetings), but you should not underestimate the time demands. It is a very demanding seminar. If more than three courts sign up, I will select the participating courts by lot. To be eligible for participation in the seminar, students should send me an e-mail (email@example.com), including the names and e-mail addresses of all five "Justices." This seminar will not have regularly-scheduled classes (except for an introductory meeting), but you should not underestimate the time demands. It is a very demanding seminar. If more than three courts sign up, I will select the participating courts by lot and I will email you to let you know whether your court has been selected.
Students in each court will write mock Supreme Court opinions in a series of eight hypothetical cases. On average, each student in this seminar writes opinions totaling approximately 50 single-spaced pages. This includes SRP papers.
- Winter 2022: Geoffrey R. Stone
- Winter 2021: Geoffrey R. Stone
- Spring 2020: Geoffrey R. Stone
- Winter 2019: Geoffrey R. Stone
- Spring 2018: Geoffrey R. Stone
The Constitutional Rights of Minors from the Minors' Point of View
This seminar will be offered to a small group of law students who will co-teach a group of high school students who are currently in the custody of Illinois's Juvenile Justice System. Each law student will be paired with one or two high school students living in and attending school in a juvenile facility and will be responsible for supporting those students' learning, commenting on their weekly work, and co-running weekly small group sessions. Law Students will also be expected to participate in additional group meetings with Professor Buss to plan the curriculum and discuss the insights gained from the class, and in individual meetings with the high school students as part of the teaching process. The seminar will meet on Tuesday mornings from 9:00 to 11:00 to accommodate the needs of the high school students. Additional meetings will be scheduled to accommodate the schedules of enrolled law students, high school students and Professor Buss. Priority will be given to Law Students enrolled in Con Law VII, to increase the law students' expertise on the topics addressed in the High School seminar and to enrich the learning in Con Law VII. If any students not enrolled in Con Law VII are enrolled in the seminar, they will be expected to do additional reading to prepare them for the seminar sessions. Topics will include: Young peoples' rights in the juvenile justice system, minors' right to control medical and reproductive decisions, and high school students' religious and speech rights , due process rights, and rights against search and seizure in school. Law Students' writing will consist of weekly response papers addressing high school students' participation and reflecting upon the high school students' contributions. Advance approval by Emily Buss is required., and space is limited. If you are interested, please contact her by email at firstname.lastname@example.org at your earliest convenience. Students interested in taking it for 3 credits will write an additional 10-15 page paper.
- Spring 2021: Emily Buss
- Autumn 2019: Emily Buss
- Winter 2018: Emily Buss
- Autumn 2018: Emily Buss
Contract Drafting and Review
This seminar will serve as an introduction to contracting drafting and how such drafting differs from other types of legal writing. We will start with the basic "anatomy of a contract," discussing the meaning, use and effect of various provisions. The seminar will address not only legal drafting issues, but also how to understand a client's practical business needs in order to effectively use the contract as a planning and problem solving tool. Students will draft specific contract provisions and a complete contract, and will learn how to read, review and analyze contracts with an eye toward both legal and business risk issues. Many/most of the exercises simulate working with a fictional client. Grades will be based upon class participation, a series of substantial out-of-class weekly drafting exercises, and two longer capstone assignments.
- Spring 2022: Joan E. Neal
- Winter 2022: Joan E. Neal
- Autumn 2021: Joan E. Neal and Michelle M. Drake
- Spring 2021: Joan E. Neal
- Winter 2021: Joan E. Neal and Michelle M. Drake
- Autumn 2020: Joan E. Neal
- Spring 2020: Joan E. Neal
- Winter 2020: Joan E. Neal
- Autumn 2019: Joan E. Neal
- Spring 2019: Joan E. Neal
- Winter 2019: Joan E. Neal
- Autumn 2018: Joan E. Neal
- Spring 2018: Joan E. Neal
- Winter 2018: Joan E. Neal
- Autumn 2017: Joan E. Neal
This seminar explores the legal and non-legal provisions and forces (including norms, networks, and ancillary contract administration programs and documents) that are used to govern contractual performance and encourage innovation in contracts in the modern economy. Although theoretically grounded in typical Chicago fashion, the focus is on the practical aspects of contracting, from selecting a supplier, to negotiating a deal, to dealing with crisis management, to governing an ongoing relationship, to thinking about the choice of forum for the resolution of different kinds of disputes. Students will work both individually and in teams, and attention will be paid to how to organize and motivate team work, a key skill in the modern law firm.
Students will have the opportunity to get feedback on their work from both the professor and outside visitors. They will review their work on crisis management with a leading consultant and former general counsel of a large company. They will advise a live client on a contract and get feedback on the wisdom of their advice. There is no long paper, but rather short assignments of various types. This class will be graded 60% written work, and 40% class participation as this is a skills class.
- Autumn 2020: Lisa Bernstein
- Spring 2020: Lisa Bernstein
Contract Law for LLM Students
The materials for this course give overview of key topics in US contract law (especially those that are most practice relevant but difficult like interpretation and damages) but the course devotes much of its in-class zoom time to subjects more directly relevant to the practice of contract law including: how to choose a contracting partner who can innovate, different approaches to negotiating agreements that will work well in practice, how to review and draft actual agreements (focusing on both procurement and biotechnology agreements), how to choose the law and dispute resolution forum best suited to the transaction, and how to deal with crises caused by a company's contracting partners. Attention is also paid to how to use both legal and nonlegal sanctions and a variety of monitoring mechanism to induce contractual performance. Students will do some work individually and some in groups (both in and out of class). Grade is part class participation/group work and part individual written assignments. There is no exam. This course does not directly prepare students for the bar, although optional videos that will aid in that endeavor are provided for those who seek this type of learning.
- Winter 2021: Lisa Bernstein
- Spring 2020: Lisa Bernstein
- Spring 2019: Lisa Bernstein
- Spring 2018: Lisa Bernstein
Corporate Compliance and Business Integration
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. Student evaluation is based on a 3-part Group Project on a corporate compliance program's response to a series of hypotheticals. Each student in the group will serve as a main presenter once. Each group assignment is accompanied by a short (3-5 pages) supplemental paper to be completed individually by each group member. Participation may be considered in final grading.
- Autumn 2021: Forrest James Deegan
- Autumn 2020: Forrest James Deegan
- Autumn 2019: Forrest James Deegan
- Autumn 2018: Forrest James Deegan
Criminal and Juvenile Justice Project Clinic
The Project provides law and social work students the supervised opportunity to represent children and young adults accused of crime in juvenile and criminal court. Representation includes addressing the social, psychological and educational needs of our clients and their families. In addition to direct representation, students are involved in policy reform and public education including work with coalitions on issues of juvenile life without parole, youth violence, mass incarceration, and the collateral consequences of conviction. Students will participate in case selection and litigation strategies. Students will be expected to do legal research and writing including drafting motions and memoranda on various legal issues, i.e. evidentiary questions, sentencing, etc. and brief writing. Additionally, students will do pre-trial investigation and fact development including interviewing clients and witnesses. 3L students who have taken a trial practice course will have the opportunity to argue motions and second chair hearings and trials. Policy work will include general research on issues, drafting statement and position papers and attendance at meetings. Corequisite: Evidence must be taken at some point that the student is in the clinic.
- Spring 2022: Herschella Conyers
- Winter 2022: Herschella Conyers
- Autumn 2021: Herschella Conyers
- Spring 2021: Herschella Conyers
- Winter 2021: Herschella Conyers
- Autumn 2020: Herschella Conyers
- Spring 2020: Herschella Conyers
- Winter 2020: Herschella Conyers
- Autumn 2019: Herschella Conyers
- Spring 2019: Herschella Conyers
- Winter 2019: Herschella Conyers
- Autumn 2018: Herschella Conyers
- Spring 2018: Herschella Conyers and Randolph Stone
- Winter 2018: Herschella Conyers and Randolph Stone
- Autumn 2017: Herschella Conyers and Randolph Stone
Derivatives, Repo, and Prime Brokerage - Negotiation and Practical Analysis
In this hands-on class, students will learn the fundamentals of the negotiation and legal structuring of derivatives and related instruments such as repo and prime brokerage. Students will engage in simulated negotiation, drafting and issue-spotting, with a focus on the challenges regularly confronted by practitioners in the private equity and opportunistic credit spaces. Class will be a mix of lecture and simulated implementation of trading programs for hypothetical clients. Grades will be based on a mix of class participation and negotiation projects.
- Spring 2022: Jaime A. Madell
Divorce Practice and Procedure
This is a simulation class providing exposure to the dynamic process of representing clients in dissolution of marriage cases and issues related to them. The class will make you aware of the complexities arising when the ever-changing family unit becomes divided. Topics are covered through an evolving case, with each student in the role of a practicing lawyer. Issues include interstate and international parental kidnapping, determination of jurisdiction, domestic violence, restraining orders and injunctions, temporary and permanent parenting rights and responsibilities (custody and visitation), temporary and permanent maintenance (alimony), child support, the characterization of property and division of assets and liabilities; also, premarital and post marital agreements, ethical issues, federal tax law affecting divorce and the effects of bankruptcy. Students will discuss and argue issues not only with instructors, but also with one or more sitting Illinois Domestic Relations Court judges, as well as interacting with classmates. Readings will be drawn from case law, statutes, and court approved forms used in contested proceedings. One half of a student's grade is based on preparation for and class participation and one half on a series of six short papers related to class topics of less than five pages.
- Autumn 2021: Donald Schiller and Erika Walsh
- Autumn 2020: Donald Schiller and Erika Walsh
- Autumn 2019: Donald Schiller and Erika Walsh
- Autumn 2018: Donald Schiller and Erika Walsh
- Autumn 2017: Donald Schiller and Erika Walsh
Editing and Advocacy
Good editors don't just see the sentence that was written. They see the sentence that might have been written. They know how to spot words that shouldn't be included and summon up ones that haven't yet appeared. Their value comes not just from preventing mistakes but from discovering new ways to improve a piece of writing's style, structure, and overall impact.
This course will teach you how to be one of those editors. You'll edit briefs. You'll edit contracts. You'll edit all kinds of legal documents. Sometimes this editing will occur during in-class exercises. Sometimes it will occur through short, weekly assignments. But always the goal will be the same: learn and practice a skill that is fundamental to becoming an excellent advocate.
Participation may be considered in final grading.
- Spring 2022: Patrick James Barry
- Winter 2022: Patrick James Barry
- Autumn 2021: Patrick James Barry
- Winter 2021: Patrick James Barry
Entrepreneurship and the Law
This seminar examines how the law and legal counsel influence innovation and entrepreneurship in the US, including by micro-enterprises and high-growth disruptors. The seminar explores the position of the entrepreneur in society, in the economy, and in our constitutional framework, in order to analyze the entrepreneur's fundamental legal needs. We survey legal questions particular to start-ups, including strategies for structuring a business organization, financing, and protecting intellectual property. Assignments require students to research issues that apply to hypothetical and real start-ups and practice lawyerly skills like strategic planning, negotiation, drafting, and counseling. Students' grades will be based on active participation, short written assignments, and a research paper. Students who have taken LAWS 53188 The Lawyer as an Entrepreneur: Analyzing & Evaluating Early-Stage Ventures may not enroll in this class.
- Winter 2022: Elizabeth Kregor and Catherine Gryczan
- Winter 2021: Elizabeth Kregor
- Winter 2020: Elizabeth Kregor and Amy Hermalik
- Autumn 2018: Elizabeth Kregor and Amy Hermalik
- Autumn 2017: Salen Churi, Elizabeth Kregor, and Amy Hermalik
Estate Planning And Drafting
This course will deal with the creation and utility of interests in real and personal property that take effect in the future. Class gifts, powers of appointment, charitable bequests, conditional limitation, and the rule against perpetuities will be among the subjects covered. Special attention will be paid to the enactment and construction of modern statutes affecting these subjects. For students who intend to enroll in the Law School's course in Trusts and Estates, this offering should provide important grounding. Students who took Estate Planning and Drafting may not take this course. This class has a final exam.
- Spring 2021: Thomas P. Gallanis
- Spring 2020: Thomas P. Gallanis
Ethics for Transactional Lawyers
This class will focus on ethical issues faced by transactional lawyers. We will consider the role of a transactional lawyer, the various sources of guidance for transactional lawyers, the intersection of personal morality and rules-based ethics, individual and organizational practice pressures that can cause lawyers to violate ethics norms, how to weigh competing ethical obligations, and select ethics issues faced by transactional lawyers in practice (including, e.g., ethics issues arising when drafting contracts, negotiating agreements, conducting due diligence, and providing opinion letters). Grades will be based upon active class participation in discussions and simulations, plus a final paper (20-25 pages). (Please note that this paper cannot fulfill the SRP or WP requirement.)
- Autumn 2021: Joan E. Neal
- Winter 2021: Joan E. Neal
- Winter 2020: Joan E. Neal
- Winter 2019: Joan E. Neal
Exoneration Project Clinic
The Exoneration Project is a post-conviction clinical project that represents people convicted of crimes of which they are innocent. Students working in our Project assist in every aspect of representation including selecting cases, advising clients, investigating and developing evidence, drafting pleadings, making oral arguments, examining witnesses at evidentiary hearings, and appellate litigation. Through participation in our Project, students explore issues of error and inequality in the criminal justice system, including police and prosecutorial misconduct, the use of faulty scientific evidence, coerced confessions, unreliable eyewitness testimony, and ineffective assistance of counsel. The Exoneration Project is an intensive, rigorous experience designed for students who are committed to providing the best possible representation to deserving clients. Second-year students wishing to enroll in the Project are encouraged to take Evidence in their second year. Third-year students are required to complete, prior to their third year, Evidence and the Intensive Trial Practice Workshop (although we recognize that that may not be possible under current circumstances). Students are also strongly encouraged but not required to take Criminal Procedure I and II. Students will receive credit for the work they do in accordance with the credit rules for all other clinical programs. Participation may be considered in final grading.
- Spring 2022: Russel Ainsworth, Karl Arthur Leonard, and Lauren Myerscough-Mueller
- Winter 2022: Russel Ainsworth, Karl Arthur Leonard, and Lauren Myerscough-Mueller
- Autumn 2021: Russel Ainsworth, Karl Arthur Leonard, and Lauren Myerscough-Mueller
- Spring 2021: Russel Ainsworth, Karl Arthur Leonard, and Lauren Myerscough-Mueller
- Winter 2021: Russel Ainsworth, Karl Arthur Leonard, and Lauren Myerscough-Mueller
- Autumn 2020: Russel Ainsworth, Karl Arthur Leonard, and Lauren Myerscough-Mueller
- Spring 2020: Joshua Tepfer, Karl Arthur Leonard, and Russel Ainsworth
- Winter 2020: Joshua Tepfer, Karl Arthur Leonard, and Russel Ainsworth
- Autumn 2019: Joshua Tepfer, Karl Arthur Leonard, and Russel Ainsworth
- Spring 2019: Tara Thompson, David Owens, and Joshua Tepfer
- Winter 2019: Tara Thompson, David Owens, Joshua Tepfer, Russell Ainsworth, and Karl Leonard
- Autumn 2018: Tara Thompson, David Owens, Joshua Tepfer, Russell Ainsworth, and Karl Leonard
- Spring 2018: Tara Thompson, David Owens, Joshua Tepfer, and Russell Ainsworth
- Winter 2018: Tara Thompson, David Owens, Joshua Tepfer, and Russell Ainsworth
- Autumn 2017: Tara Thompson, David Owens, Joshua Tepfer, and Russell Ainsworth
Federal Criminal Justice Clinic
The Federal Criminal Justice Clinic is the first law school clinic in the country to focus on representing indigent clients charged with federal felonies. The FCJC gives students a unique opportunity to represent individual clients in federal court. FCJC students also engage in policy advocacy and systemic reform efforts, with a focus on combating racial disparities and racially discriminatory practices. The FCJC is currently leading a Federal Bail Reform Project through which students have engaged in legislative advocacy before Congress and have created the first federal court watching initiative in the country.
The FCJC litigates in federal district court in Chicago, before the Seventh Circuit, and in the U.S. Supreme Court. In our district court litigation, FCJC students may have an opportunity to interview clients and witnesses; meet with clients; conduct and participate in hearings and trials; research, write, and argue motions and briefs; and participate in case investigations. During the pandemic, FCJC students have continued representing clients virtually and have litigated numerous successful motions for compassionate release. Students involved in appellate litigation write briefs to the Seventh Circuit and the Supreme Court and may conduct oral argument in the Seventh Circuit.
The FCJC seminar includes skills exercises, simulations, lectures, case rounds, guest speakers, and discussions. The pre-requisites/co-requisites are Professor Siegler's Criminal Procedure II course, Evidence, and Criminal Procedure I; these courses may be taken at any time during 2L or 3L year. It is strongly recommended that students interested in joining the FCJC take a trial advocacy course. The FCJC is a year-long clinic. First priority is given to 3Ls; the remaining slots go to 2Ls. Students who want to learn more about the FCJC or who have questions about the enrollment requirements may contact Prof. Siegler or Prof. Zunkel.
Participation may be considered in final grading.
- Spring 2022: Alison Siegler
- Winter 2022: Alison Siegler
- Autumn 2021: Alison Siegler and Judith P. Miller
- Spring 2021: Alison Siegler, Erica Zunkel, and Judith P. Miller
- Winter 2021: Alison Siegler, Erica Zunkel, and Judith P. Miller
- Autumn 2020: Alison Siegler, Erica Zunkel, and Judith P. Miller
- Spring 2020: Alison Siegler, Erica Zunkel, and Judith P. Miller
- Winter 2020: Alison Siegler, Erica Zunkel, and Judith P. Miller
- Autumn 2019: Alison Siegler, Erica Zunkel, and Judith P. Miller
- Spring 2019: Alison Siegler
- Winter 2019: Alison Siegler, Erica Zunkel, and Judith P. Miller
- Autumn 2018: Alison Siegler, Erica Zunkel, and Judith P. Miller
- Spring 2018: Alison Siegler, Erica Zunkel, and James R. DuBray
- Winter 2018: Alison Siegler, Erica Zunkel, and James R. DuBray
- Autumn 2017: Alison Siegler, Erica Zunkel, and Judith P. Miller
Federal Criminal Justice Practice and Issues
This practice-oriented course integrates instruction on federal pretrial criminal procedures and issues with student practice exercises overseen by the instructor. The course will cover federal criminal practice from investigation up to trial, utilizing examples from recent federal criminal investigations and cases. The course will provide opportunities for student performance to develop professional skills and understanding. In particular, the course will provide instruction on (i) federal investigations and related issues (including Grand Jury proceedings and witness immunity); (ii) corporate internal investigations; (iii) federal charging decisions; (iv) initial appearances following arrest and accompanying bail/detention hearings (v) discovery under the federal criminal rules; (vi) pretrial motions and practice; and (vii) plea agreements. Students will engage in periodic practice simulations related to the pretrial stages of a federal criminal case. For example, students will conduct mock witness interviews in the context of a corporate internal investigation, present motions and arguments seeking, and objecting to, pretrial detention, and present motions and argument seeking to exclude or admit evidence. The course thus will provide opportunities for oral and written advocacy focusing on federal criminal pretrial practice. Each class session will also include discussion of practical and strategic issues facing both the defense and the prosecution under real-world circumstances at each pretrial stage. A student's grade will be based on class participation and written and oral performance in the simulated practice exercises.
- Winter 2022: Michael Doss
- Winter 2021: Michael Doss
- Winter 2020: Michael Doss
- Winter 2019: Michael Doss
- Winter 2018: Michael Doss
Fundamentals of In-House Counsel
The role of in-house counsel is both complex and complicated, and can be vastly rewarding to the attorney who understands its realities and can apply the law in a practical manner to support an enterprise and its leadership. This course will help students explore and learn the fundamentals critical to succeeding as inside counsel. Through a combination of review and discussion of influential written work of preeminent past and present in-house lawyers, discussion of case studies focused on contemporary scenarios faced by inside counsel, analysis and evaluation of risk issues in specific contracts, in-class simulations and team exercises, and guest speakers who will share their experiences and talk about their career paths, including successes and failures along the way, you will obtain an understanding of the modern view of inside counsel from a variety of diverse vantage points.
The primary focus will be on beginning to understand the critical skills necessary to prepare to succeed as in-house counsel in a large U.S. private or public company setting. We will seek to answer questions such as: How does working in-house compare and contrast to working at a law firm, what are the day-to-day challenges experienced by inside counsel and what are strategies to meet them and excel, how has the in-house counsel role evolved over time, and what does the future hold for attorneys serving as in-house counsel. From the student who aspires to one day be an in-house attorney, to the student who plans to serve in-house counsel while working at a law firm, Fundamentals of In-House Counsel will provide a multitude of candid and practical perspectives on the critical means by which the law supports today's American enterprises.
Grading will be based on in-class performance and a series of reflection papers.
- Spring 2021: David Zarfes, Josh Avratin, and Nathan Lawrence Lutz
Global Human Rights Clinic
The Global Human Rights Clinic (GHRC) works to advance social and economic justice worldwide. The Clinic uses multidimensional advocacy strategies to address pressing human rights issues, including documentation and reporting, legislative and institutional reform, and litigation in domestic, regional and international tribunals. Working in project teams, students develop essential lawyering skills, including oral advocacy, fact-finding, research, legal and non-legal persuasive writing, interviewing, media advocacy, cultural competency and strategic thinking. GHRC clients and partners include United Nations agencies and other multinational organizations, NGOs and individuals across the globe, and national and local governments. Clinic projects vary from year to year. In 2020-2021, GHRC projects included litigation of a Petition on behalf of domestic workers before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights; advisory support to candidates for Chile's constitutional commission on measures to advance gender equality and women's rights; publication of two reports on police lethal use of force policies in the U.S. and globally; design and delivery of trainings on strategic litigation and comparative foreign law to lawyers in Tanzania challenging inhumane prison conditions; and documentation to the U.N. Human Rights Council on Vietnam's violation of its citizens' right to freedom of expression. For more information on the Clinic's work, visit the GHRC's website: https://www.law.uchicago.edu/ghrc and Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/GHRChicago. Students may enroll for up to three credits in the Clinic per quarter. New students to GHRC enrolled in the J.D. program should plan to take the Clinic for three quarters for a minimum of two credits each quarter, unless they receive faculty approval prior to registration. Continuing J.D. students and LLMs may take the Clinic for any allowable amount of credits and quarters. Participation may be considered in final grading. Recommended (not required) co-requisites: Public International Law; International Human Rights Law.
- Spring 2022: Claudia M. Flores and Mariana Olaizola Rosenblat
- Winter 2022: Mariana Olaizola Rosenblat
- Autumn 2021: Mariana Olaizola Rosenblat
- Spring 2021: Claudia M. Flores and Mariana Olaizola Rosenblat
- Winter 2021: Claudia M. Flores and Mariana Olaizola Rosenblat
- Autumn 2020: Claudia M. Flores and Mariana Olaizola Rosenblat
Government Integrity and Transparency Seminar
The new Seminar on Government Integrity and Transparency will provide students with an opportunity to learn about the legal systems that promote government integrity and transparency through participation in a seminar and a field placement in a government oversight agency or entity. The goal of this new course offering is to familiarize students with the legal rules, policies, and procedures for ensuring the proper, transparent functioning of governmental operations. The seminar will provide students with exposure to substantive and procedural law, criminal and administrative law, ethics, litigation preparation and practice (through participation in classroom exercises built around a single public corruption matter), and hands-on experience through a field placement. Each student in the seminar will be responsible for securing a field placement and participating in a pre-screened field placement program with a governmental entity with oversight and transparency responsibilities during the Spring Quarter 2021. Through a working case study, students will have an opportunity to build investigative and reasoning skills. This class requires weekly written assignments. Participation may be considered in final grading.
- Spring 2021: Sharon R. Fairley
Hacking for Defense
H4D is an opportunity to work with teams at the Defense Department and the various intelligence agencies (e.g., NSA, CIA) to solve real world operational problems. Started at Stanford, this program is now offered at several universities across the country. DoD chose Chicago as a new midwest site. Students will form teams with students in other departments, and teams will be assigned to/choose a project to work on. The learning will be through a flipped classroom--the lecture content is in the form of videos done by the program sponsors at Stanford and the DoD. (They are very good.) Then, we will meet as a class to discuss the materials and work together in our teams. Students will be paired with a program sponsor from the government, and work toward a solution that can be deployed. Time will be spent doing interviews, field visits, and problem solving with your team. This will require far more work than the typical law school course, but it will be much more interesting and have real world impact. There is the possibility of forming a business venture and entering the New Venture Challenge with the team. Previous ideas that have come out of H4D have helped the SEALS improve their training, the Army increase the efficiency of its supply chain, and the Navy develop a better communications device for sub-surface warfare. Check out some of the team videos online for examples. This seminar has extra time built into the meetings, but not all sessions will cover that entire time. Ultimately the class time will be the equivalent of two hours each week. Participation may be considered in final grading.
- Autumn 2020: M. Todd Henderson and William Gossin-Wilson
Hopi/Alaska Law Practicum
Students will work directly with Alaskan Native Corporations, Alaskan Native Villages, and the Hopi Appellate Court (Arizona). One project is on the impact of climate change on legal access to sustainable food sources (e.g., caribou and salmon). The student will work as part of a National Science Foundation grant, as an input of the tribal perspective into the broader issue. This will involve research (including talking to relevant stakeholders and potentially field research), as well as crafting parts of the final report. The other Alaskan project is about corporate governance of Alaskan for-profit and non-profit regional corporations. Shareholding in these is limited by statute, but can be expanded under certain circumstances. This is a vital issue for many natives, as the existing shareholder base is limited and viewed by many as inequitable. There are many interesting governance issues with huge impact and wide appeal. The work will involve crafting a policy memo that summarizes the existing state of play, legal rules, and suggested strategic approach. It will be an input into a regional chiefs meeting in Fairbanks, and will have the potential to have a big impact on the future of Alaska natives. The final project involves assisting the Hopi Appellate Court as a law clerk.
- Spring 2022: M. Todd Henderson
- Winter 2022: M. Todd Henderson
- Spring 2020: M. Todd Henderson
- Winter 2020: M. Todd Henderson
- Autumn 2019: M. Todd Henderson
- Winter 2018: M. Todd Henderson and Justin Richland
- Autumn 2017: M. Todd Henderson and Justin Richland
Housing Initiative Transactional Clinic
The Housing Initiative Transactional Clinic provides legal representation on complex real estate development projects to build affordable housing. Clients include nonprofit, community-based affordable housing developers and housing cooperatives. Students serve as deal lawyers, working with clients and teams of professionals -- such as financial consultants, architects, marketing professionals, property managers, and social service providers -- to bring affordable housing and mixed use development projects to fruition. Projects range from single family rehabs with budgets in the $30,000 to $75,000 range, to multi-million dollar rental and mixed use projects financed by low income housing tax credits, tax exempt bonds, TIF, and other layered subsidies. Students also counsel nonprofit clients on governance and tax issues related to their work. In addition to their client work, students meet as a group in a weekly two-hour seminar in autumn quarter, and in a weekly one-hour seminar during winter and spring quarters, to discuss the substantive rules and legal skills pertinent to real estate development transactions and to examine emergent issues arising out of the students' work. During the fall quarter seminar, returning clinic students need only attend the first hour; new students should attend for the full two hours. In the winter and spring quarters, all students should attend all the one-hour seminar sessions. Academic credit for the Housing Initiative Transactional Clinic varies and is 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. Participation may be considered in final grading.
- Spring 2022: Jeffrey E. Leslie
- Spring 2021: Jeffrey E. Leslie
- Winter 2021: Jeffrey E. Leslie
- Autumn 2020: Jeffrey E. Leslie
- Spring 2020: Jeffrey E. Leslie
- Winter 2020: Jeffrey E. Leslie
- Autumn 2019: Jeffrey E. Leslie
- Spring 2019: Jeffrey E. Leslie
- Winter 2019: Jeffrey E. Leslie
- Autumn 2018: Jeffrey E. Leslie
Immigrants' Rights Clinic
The Immigrants' Rights Clinic provides legal representation to immigrant communities in Chicago, including individual representation of immigrants in removal proceedings, immigration-related complex federal litigation, and policy and community education projects on behalf of community-based organizations. Students will interview clients, develop claims and defenses, draft complaints, engage in motion practice and settlement discussions, appear in federal, state, and administrative courts, conduct oral arguments and trials, brief and argue appeals, and engage in media advocacy. In the policy and community education projects, students may develop and conduct community presentations, draft and advocate for legislation at the state and local levels, research and draft public policy reports, and provide support to immigrants' rights organizations. Past and current projects include the first challenge to indefinite detention under the PATRIOT Act, a civil rights lawsuit alleging Fourth and Fourteenth Amendment challenges against state law enforcement involved in an arrest that led to deportation, litigation against ICE detention centers for conditions of confinement during the COVID-19 pandemic, challenges to due process in removal proceedings, representation of asylum seekers and human trafficking victims, and publication of the first guide to the immigration consequences of criminal convictions for criminal defense attorneys in Illinois. The seminar will meet for two hours per week and will include classes on the fundamentals of immigration law and policy as well as skills-based classes that connect to the students' fieldwork. Both 2L and 3L students are encouraged to apply. Students must enroll for either 2 or 3 credits each quarter and must enroll for all three quarters. Students will be evaluated on the fieldwork portion of course on the basis of whether they: • Fulfill professional obligations to clients • Work diligently and zealously towards accomplishing the clients' goals • Collaborate with team members and supervisor effectively • Show willingness to learn new skills and confront new legal problems • Show improvement in legal writing, oral advocacy, and other lawyering skills • Willingly incorporate feedback into your work • Use reflection to learn from clinic experiences • Display responsibility, collegiality, and professionalism • Meet internal and external deadlines • Attend class prepared to discuss readings and regularly participate in classroom discussions • Practice excellent file management and time-keeping.
- Spring 2022: A. Nicole Hallett
- Winter 2022: A. Nicole Hallett
- Autumn 2021: A. Nicole Hallett
- Spring 2021: A. Nicole Hallett
- Winter 2021: A. Nicole Hallett
- Autumn 2020: A. Nicole Hallett
- Spring 2020: A. Nicole Hallett
- Winter 2020: A. Nicole Hallett
The Innovation Clinic gives students the opportunity to counsel startups and venture capital funds on a broad range of corporate law and strategic issues, including regulatory compliance, entity formation, stock options and employee equity, privacy, employment, governance and founders' agreements, and commercial agreements. Students also present on such topics at the Argonne National Laboratories' Chain Reaction Innovations Incubator and at the Polsky Center. In addition to their work with the Clinic's clients and the substantive topic areas to be covered, students will have the opportunity to train in, and develop, the soft skills that separate good lawyers from highly effective lawyers in a transactional practice, such as negotiation, client management, preparedness and flexibility. Students will work with startups across a wide variety of industries and will also complete non-client related homework assignments to prepare them for client work. Students are required to enroll in the Clinic for a minimum of two consecutive quarters, and enrollment is currently capped at three consecutive quarters of participation. Students may take between 1-3 credits in any given quarter.
Students will be evaluated based on the quality of work they prepare for the Clinic's clients, how well they interact with clients and demonstrate a command of the soft skills required for effective transactional legal practice, and the volume and quality of their participation during in-class sessions.
- Spring 2022: Emily Underwood
- Winter 2022: Emily Underwood
- Autumn 2021: Emily Underwood
- Spring 2021: Emily Underwood
- Winter 2021: Emily Underwood
- Autumn 2020: Emily Underwood
- Spring 2020: Emily Underwood
- Winter 2020: Emily Underwood
- Autumn 2019: Emily Underwood
- Winter 2019: Emily Underwood
- Autumn 2018: Emily Underwood
- Spring 2018: Salen Churi
- Winter 2018: Salen Churi
- Autumn 2017: Salen Churi
Innovation Fund Associates Program Practicum
The Innovation Fund Associates ("IFA") program practicum is an avenue for law students who are accepted into the IFA program to receive course credit for their participation in lieu of the available stipend. Information regarding the IFA program can be found here: https://polsky.uchicago.edu/programs-events/innovation-fund-associates-program/.
Students receive 3 credits during each of the Spring and Autumn Quarters, and prepare brief response papers during each of those quarters reflecting on their experience. There is substantial training during the Winter Quarter but no credit is offered for this time. During the Spring and Autumn Quarters, in addition to the final presentation date, students should plan on meeting (1) for two to three hours every other Friday at noon for status updates, (2) on three to four additional dates that will be communicated to accepted students during the preceding quarter for trainings on topics such as patent law, FDA regulatory processes and compliance, public speaking, and other subjects relevant to the funding candidates during that cycle, and (3) two to three times per week with their teams, fund leaders, funding candidates and industry experts as part of the diligence process. There is substantial individual work outside of these meetings. Students do all coursework at the Polsky Center with potential site visits to the offices of industry experts and target companies. The approximate time commitment for the program is an average of 15 hours per week, although that may vary. Students may either take the offered stipend or course credit in any given quarter, but not both, and must be accepted into the IFA program through its normal application procedures before they are eligible to participate in the practicum.
- Spring 2022: Emily Underwood
- Autumn 2021: Emily Underwood
- Spring 2021: Emily Underwood
- Autumn 2020: Emily Underwood
- Spring 2020: Emily Underwood
Institute for Justice Clinic on Entrepreneurship
The Institute for Justice Clinic on Entrepreneurship, or IJ Clinic, provides legal assistance to low-income entrepreneurs who are pursuing the American Dream in spite of legal obstacles. IJ Clinic students develop practical skills in transactional lawyering while helping creative entrepreneurs earn an honest living, innovate, and build businesses that build neighborhoods. Students advise clients on issues such as business formation, licensing, zoning, strategic relationships, employment law, intellectual property protection, and regulatory compliance. Students become trusted advisors for their clients and have the opportunity to consult with clients on business developments; draft and review custom contracts; negotiate deals; research complex regulatory schemes and advise clients on how to comply; and occasionally appear before administrative bodies. Students may also work on policy projects to change laws that restrict low-income entrepreneurs. Policy work may involve legislative drafting, lobbying, and community organizing. 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 staff. A commitment of at least two consecutive quarters is required.
Evaluation is based holistically on the student's client work.
- Spring 2022: Elizabeth Kregor and Catherine Gryczan
- Winter 2022: Elizabeth Kregor and Catherine Gryczan
- Autumn 2021: Elizabeth Kregor and Catherine Gryczan
- Spring 2021: Elizabeth Kregor
- Winter 2021: Elizabeth Kregor
- Autumn 2020: Elizabeth Kregor and Amy Hermalik
- Spring 2020: Elizabeth Kregor and Amy Hermalik
- Winter 2020: Elizabeth Kregor and Amy Hermalik
- Autumn 2019: Elizabeth Kregor and Amy Hermalik
- Spring 2019: Elizabeth Kregor and Amy Hermalik
- Winter 2019: Elizabeth Kregor and Amy Hermalik
- Autumn 2018: Elizabeth Kregor and Amy Hermalik
- Spring 2018: Elizabeth Kregor and Amy Hermalik
- Winter 2018: Elizabeth Kregor and Amy Hermalik
- Autumn 2017: Elizabeth Kregor and Amy Hermalik
Intensive Contract Drafting Workshop
This 3-credit intensive seminar will meet each weekday morning from 9:00am-11:15am from August 23 - September 3. Students should plan to treat the seminar like a full time job during this period - they will spend a substantial part of each afternoon doing written homework which is due each evening, and a part of each evening doing reading and preparation for the next day's class. The seminar will serve as an introduction to contract drafting and how such drafting differs from other types of legal writing. We will start with the basic "anatomy of a contract," discussing the meaning, use and effect of various provisions. The seminar will address not only legal drafting issues, but also how to understand a client's practical business needs in order to effectively use the contract as a planning and problem solving tool. Students will draft specific contract provisions and a complete contract, and will learn how to read, review and analyze contracts with an eye toward both legal and business risk issues. Many/most of the exercises simulate working with a fictional client. Evaluation will be based upon class participation and a series of substantial out-of-class daily drafting exercises. Students are not eligible to register if they have taken Contract Drafting and Review, Advanced Contract Skills or other similar contract drafting courses.
- Autumn 2021: Emily Underwood and Michelle M. Drake
- Autumn 2020: Emily Underwood
- Autumn 2019: Joan E. Neal and Emily Underwood
Intensive Trial Practice Workshop
This is a required class for participation in the Civil Rights-Police Accountability Clinic, the Criminal & Juvenile Justice Project Clinic, and the Exoneration Project Clinic. This class is strongly recommended for participation in the Employment Law Clinic and the Federal Criminal Justice Clinic. It is also open to all rising 3Ls, irrespective of participation in any clinic. This class teaches trial preparation, trial advocacy, and strategy through a variety of teaching techniques, including lectures and demonstrations, but primarily through simulated trial exercises. Topics include opening statements, witness preparation, direct and cross examination, expert witnesses, objections at trial, and closing argument. Practicing lawyers and judges are enlisted to provide students with demonstrations and critiques from varied perspectives. The class concludes with a simulated jury trial presided over by sitting state and federal court judges. Open to 3L J.D. students only. The faculty strongly recommend that students take Evidence prior to enrolling in this course. Completion of this class partially satisfies one of the requirements for admission to the trial bar of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. Students who have taken Trial Advocacy (LAWS 67603) or Trial Practice: Strategy and Advocacy (LAWS 91702) may not take this class.
This class is offered for approximately 5-6 hours/day before the beginning of the Autumn Quarter. The Autumn 2019 Workshop is scheduled from 9/16 through 9/27, and the final trial is scheduled for Saturday, September 28. The student's grade is based on a compilation of daily performance evaluations. For more information regarding Intensive Trial Practice Workshop, please email Professor Futterman at email@example.com, or Professor Conyers at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Autumn 2021: Herschella Conyers, Craig Futterman, Erica Zunkel, Judith P Miller, and Jorge Alonso
- Autumn 2019: Herschella Conyers, Craig Futterman, and Erica Zunkel
- Autumn 2018: Herschella Conyers, Craig Futterman, Erica Zunkel, and Jorge Alonso
- Autumn 2017: Herschella Conyers, Randolph Stone, and Craig Futterman
This seminar provides a basic foundation in the law and mechanics of international commercial arbitration and international investment treaty 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, ICDR, 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 2021: Javier Rubinstein
- Winter 2021: Javier Rubinstein
- Autumn 2019: Javier Rubenstein
- Autumn 2018: Javier Rubinstein
- Autumn 2017: Javier Rubinstein
Jenner & Block Supreme Court and Appellate Clinic
The Jenner & Block Supreme Court and Appellate Clinic represents parties and amici curiae in cases before the United States Supreme Court and other appellate courts. Students work on all aspects of the clinic's cases -- from formulating case strategy; to researching and writing merits briefs, amicus curiae briefs, and petitions for certiorari; to preparing for oral arguments. Students also conduct research on cases that may be suitable to bring to the U.S. Supreme Court. Although the clinic's focus is the U.S. Supreme Court, the clinic may also handle cases in the United States Courts of Appeals and the Illinois Supreme Court.
The clinic is supervised by Associate Clinical Professor Sarah Konsky, Professor David Strauss, and members of the Appellate and Supreme Court Practice group at Jenner & Block. U.S. Supreme Court: Theory and Practice (LAWS 50311) is required as either a pre-requisite or co-requisite for 2L and 3L students participating in the clinic. Students who have successfully completed a course covering content comparable to the U.S. Supreme Court: Theory and Practice seminar may seek consent from Professor Konsky to waive the co-requisite requirement. Academic credit for the clinic varies and is 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. Participation may be considered in final grading.
- Spring 2022: David A. Strauss, Sarah M. Konsky
- Winter 2022: David A. Strauss, Sarah M. Konsky
- Autumn 2021: David A. Strauss, Sarah M. Konsky
- Spring 2021: David A. Strauss, Sarah M. Konsky
- Winter 2021: David A. Strauss, Sarah M. Konsky
- Autumn 2020: David A. Strauss, Sarah M. Konsky
- Spring 2020: David A. Strauss, Sarah M. Konsky
- Winter 2020: David A. Strauss, Sarah M. Konsky
- Autumn 2019: David A. Strauss, Sarah M. Konsky
- Winter 2019: David A. Strauss, Sarah M. Konsky
- Autumn 2018: David A. Strauss, Sarah M. Konsky
- Spring 2018: David A. Strauss, Sarah M. Konsky
- Winter 2018: David A. Strauss, Sarah M. Konsky
- Autumn 2017: David A. Strauss, Sarah M. Konsky
Judicial Opinion Writing
Judicial opinions are the means by which judges explain their rulings to the litigants and their lawyers, and in many instances (depending largely, but not exclusively, on whether the judge is writing on behalf of a court of review) to the bar as a whole, other judges, other branches of government, and/or the public at large. For those of you planning to serve as a law clerk after graduation, opinion drafting and editing likely will comprise the lion's share of your work. For those of you planning on a career as a litigator, understanding the elements of judicial opinion writing will help you to effectively frame your arguments in your briefs and at oral argument. And for all of you, reinforcing the skills necessary to write clearly and edit wisely will serve you well whatever your future plans.
The class will begin with a careful review of the work of some well known judges, past and contemporary. The remaining sessions will proceed largely in a workshop format. For the first half of the remaining sessions, each of you will rewrite a recent, published appellate opinion that we will select. For the second half, each of you will write an appellate opinion from scratch based on a real case that we will select and that will recently have been argued. If your opinion is up for discussion for a given week, we will ask that you post it to the class site by noon on the Monday preceding the class so that we and the other students can read it. More than one student will be assigned each rewritten and original opinion, enabling the class to compare different approaches taken to the same set of problems. The point of this, as you'll see, is entirely pedagogical; it is not to turn this class into the law school equivalent of Top Chef or Project Runway. There is no single right way to construct an eminently readable and learned opinion. Participation may be considered in final grading.
- Winter 2022: Robert Hochman, and Gary Feinerman
- Winter 2021: Robert Hochman and Gary Feinerman
- Winter 2020: Robert Hochman and Gary Feinerman (as Judicial Opinions and Judicial Opinion Writing)
- Winter 2019: Robert Hochman and Gary Feinerman (as Judicial Opinions and Judicial Opinion Writing)
- Winter 2018: Richard A. Posner and Robert Hochman (as Judicial Opinions and Judicial Opinion Writing)
Kirkland & Ellis Corporate Lab Clinic
The Kirkland & Ellis Lab provides students with a forum for working closely with legal and business teams at top-tier multinational companies, leading nonprofits, and entrepreneurial startups. The primary goal of the Lab is for students to learn practical legal skills, both substantively, in terms of the corporate "building blocks" necessary to understand complex transactions and agreements, and professionally, in terms of implementing such knowledge efficiently and meaningfully within the context of a wide array of careers as lawyers and business leaders. This class mirrors the real world work experience of both litigators and corporate lawyers: students will receive hands-on substantive and client-development experience and will be expected to manage and meet expectations and deadlines while exercising a high level of professionalism. Clients will include Abercrombie & Fitch, Accenture, Baxter Healthcare, Booth School of Business New Venture Challenge (Spring Quarter), GE Healthcare, Honeywell, IBM, John Deere, Microsoft, Nike, Northern Trust, Schreiber Foods, and Verizon Communications. Corporate Lab students also will have the opportunity, should they wish, to negotiate a simulated cross-border transaction opposite students of a leading foreign law school as part of the negotiation workshop component of the Corporate Lab (Autumn Quarter). Please note: (i) students are expected to remain in the Corporate Lab for a minimum of two consecutive quarters, (ii) students may not take the Corporate Lab for more than nine credits, and (iii) this offering will not count toward seminar restrictions. Student grades will be based upon participation in the classroom, appropriate attention to client services, collaborative efforts within a team environment, and quality of work product. For additional information, see the Corporate Lab website at http://www.law.uchicago.edu/corporatelab. (Reduced 2-credit option available with instructor permission.)
- Spring 2022: David Zarfes, Josh Avratin, and Sean Z. Kramer
- Winter 2022: David Zarfes, Josh Avratin, and Sean Z. Kramer
- Autumn 2021: David Zarfes, Josh Avratin, and Sean Z. Kramer
- Spring 2021: David Zarfes, Josh Avratin, and Sean Z. Kramer
- Winter 2021: David Zarfes, Josh Avratin, and Sean Z. Kramer
- Autumn 2020: David Zarfes, Josh Avratin, and Sean Z. Kramer
- Spring 2020: David Zarfes, Sean Z. Kramer, and Josh Avratin
- Winter 2020: David Zarfes, Sean Z. Kramer, and Josh Avratin
- Autumn 2019: David Zarfes, Sean Z. Kramer, and Josh Avratin
Law and Public Policy: Case Studies in Problem Solving
This course 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, in part, on the instructor's experience as former Corporation Counsel and senior legal advisor to the Mayor of the City of Chicago. 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 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, 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.
- Autumn 2021: Stephen R Patton
- Autumn 2020: Stephen R Patton
- Autumn 2019: Stephen R. Patton
- Autumn 2018: Stephen R. Patton
Legal Elements of Accounting
This mini-class introduces accounting from a mixed law and business perspective. It covers basic concepts and vocabulary of accounting, not so much to instill proficiency with the mechanics of debits and credits as to serve as a foundation from which to understand financial statements. The course then examines accounting from a legal perspective, including consideration of common accounting decisions with potential legal ramifications. It also analyzes throughout the reasons for and roles of financial accounting and auditing, as well as the incentives of various persons involved in producing, regulating, and consuming financial accounting information. The seminar will touch on some limitations of, and divergent results possible under, generally accepted accounting principles. Current cases, proposals, and controversies will be discussed. Attendance and participation will be very important. Grades will be based on a take-home assignment. Students with substantial prior exposure to accounting (such as students with an MBA, joint MBA/JD students, and undergraduate finance or accounting majors) may not take the course for credit. This class has a final take-home exam.
The instructor will provide parallel page referenced reading assignments in each of the 5th (2010,) 6th (2013) and 7th (2018) editions of the textbook, so students may purchase any of these editions.
- Winter 2022: John R. Sylla
- Winter 2021: John R. Sylla
- Winter 2020: John R. Sylla
- Winter 2019: John R. Sylla
- Winter 2018: John R. Sylla
This course, which satisfies the professional responsibility requirement, will consider the law and the ethics governing lawyers. Among the topics that will be examined are the nature of the lawyer-client relationship, competency, confidentiality, conflicts of interest, and some fundamental questions about who we are and what we stand for as lawyers. A student's grade is based on a final examination. This class will be capped at 50.
- Spring 2022: Barry S. Alberts
- Spring 2021: Barry S. Alberts
- Spring 2020: Barry S. Alberts
- Spring 2019: Barry S. Alberts
- Spring 2018: Barry S. Alberts
Legal Profession: Ethics
This seminar addresses ethical considerations and issues encountered during the practice of law, including strategic, practical, and moral considerations with which attorneys should be familiar. Using materials from casebooks, the Model Rules of Professional Conduct, cases or articles of particular interest, and videos, we will discuss within the context of the Model Rules the ethical situations that lawyers face. There will be a particular focus on the ambiguities of how to handle particularly difficult issues encountered in the practice of law and the rules and framework to which attorneys can turn in determining how to handle those situations. Throughout the seminar, we will consider certain overarching questions, including: a) are lawyers authorized by their duties to clients to lie, b) is civility consistent with the duty of vigorous representation, c) are aspects of the practice of law beyond the rules, and d) can there be a conflict without direct adversity. This seminar will be taught as a participatory class and will use structured hypotheticals, role playing, class discussions, and class competitions. A short quarter ending presentation is required. Students will be evaluated both on the quality and extent of their participation and the presentation and on the basis of a paper of 20 pages in length on a topic relating to professional responsibility chosen by and of particular interest to the student. Attendance is mandatory.
- Winter 2022: Hal Morris
- Winter 2021: Hal Morris
- Winter 2020: Hal Morris
- Winter 2019: Hal Morris
- Winter 2018: Hal Morris
Legal Profession: Ethics in Government and Public Interest Legal Practice
This seminar, which satisfies the professional responsibility requirement, will address the ethical rules and principles that govern public interest and government attorneys. Among the topics that will be explored is the challenge of defining who the client is in government practice and how that interplays with conflict of interest rules. Time will also be devoted to exploring the nature of the attorney-client relationship, candor requirements and various other duties and obligations imposed upon government and public interest attorneys, whether they litigate cases or not. Real world scenarios will be used to illustrate the various ethical issues attorneys face each day. The class will meet once a week. A student's grade will be based upon the quality of in-class participation, a take-home final exam and a 10 page paper on a topic of the student's choosing in consultation with the Instructor.
- Spring 2022: Lynda A. Peters
Legal Spanish: Public Interest Law in the US
This course brings students to high-intermediate levels in reading, speaking, and listening, for the practice of public interest law in the US. Learners will build proficiency around relevant topic areas so that they can read, listen, explain, present and solicit information related to rights, procedures, legal actions, etc. Pre-requisite: one year of university-level Spanish or equivalent. Optional proficiency test through the University of Chicago Office of Language Assessment offered at the end of the course that yields a certificate and a proficiency rating on student transcripts. Since this is a class offered by the college, it begins the week of March 28.
- Spring 2022: Darcy Lear
- Spring 2021: Darcy Lear
This seminar brings lawyers and students together to analyze and develop aspects of the lawyers' ongoing cases. It allows good lawyers to use law students for collaborative help with open cases, and allows law students to learn litigation skills by working with the lawyers. A different lawyer with a different case will participate in most class sessions. Typically the lawyer will provide materials for the students to review before the class. During the class, students will discuss, argue, debate, and work with the lawyer to solve hard issues. Following each class, students will complete written materials analyzing and evaluating the problem. In classes when lawyers are not included, students also learn practical litigation skills through various advocacy exercises. Students will be graded based on active participation and their written materials.
- Winter 2022: Catherine M. Masters, and James A. Clark
- Winter 2021: Catherine M. Masters and James A. Clark
- Winter 2020: Catherine M. Masters and James A. Clark
- Winter 2019: Catherine M. Masters and James A. Clark
- Winter 2018: Catherine M. Masters and James A. Clark
Modern Professional Responsibility
This course satisfies the professional responsibility requirement. It will explore a variety of legal, ethical and real-world issues commonly faced by modern lawyers in their daily practices. It will address the relationship among the Model Rules of Professional Conduct, the Restatement of the Law Governing Lawyers and the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. It will also focus on several noteworthy legal malpractice and securities claims in which lawyers and major law firms were involved. Course materials will include traditional texts and statutory materials, hypotheticals drawn from unreported matters, as well as the results of mock trials and jury focus groups in which the conduct of lawyers was at issue. This class has a final exam. Participation may be considered in final grading.
Students should purchase a hardcopy edition of the required textbook "The Law Governing Lawyers". The ebook only option does not allow offline access which may be required for the in-class proctored exam.
- Autumn 2021: Mark Nozette
- Autumn 2020: Mark Nozette
- Autumn 2019: Mark Nozette
- Autumn 2018: Mark Nozette
- Autumn 2017: Mark Nozette
Moot Court Boot Camp
Moot Court Boot Camp has two components: oral advocacy and writing. The oral advocacy component will cover the basics of appellate oral argument. Students will receive briefs and/or bullet points from two different cases and will prepare and submit argument outlines in advance. During the workshop, students will gain hands-on experience by conducting multiple oral arguments before practicing-attorney judges, who will provide feedback. The writing component will cover the basics of appellate brief writing. Students will prepare a short, written assignment that we will discuss and revise during class. We will focus on strong issue statements, effective headings, and powerful conclusions. We'll also explore sentence structure and word choice. Students will learn to define themes in their writing and carry them into the oral argument. Focused writing promotes successful oral advocacy, and vice versa. This class, which will meet for one weekend (October 10-11) during the quarter, is an optional supplement to the Hinton Moot Court Competition. One credit will be granted for the weekend course and an additional credit will be granted upon completion of two judged arguments as part of the Hinton Moot Court Competition. There are no prerequisites, but good faith participation in the Hinton Moot Court Competition is required. Students may receive credit for this class only once during their Law School career. The Moot Court Boot Camp is open to J.D. students only and is graded Pass/Fail.
- Autumn 2020: Madeline Ward Lansky and Rebecca Margaret Taylor Horwitz
- Autumn 2019: Sharon R. Fairley
- Autumn 2018: Sarah Konsky and James Whitehead
- Autumn 2017: Elizabeth Duquette and Lisa M. Noller
This class will introduce the theory and practice of negotiation across various contexts, including deal-making and dispute resolution. It will give students an organized theoretical framework for analyzing various parties' positions and crafting thoughtful strategies. Students will develop their practical skills and individual styles through a series of simulation exercises, which will be executed inside and outside of class and then discussed and critiqued. Exposure to different techniques, styles, and contexts will be used to teach students what works best for them. Grading will be based on a series of reaction papers and out of classroom work. Participation may be considered in final grading. You may not take this class if you have taken LAWS 81003 Intensive Negotiation Seminar.
- Spring 2022: Jesse H. Ruiz
- Spring 2021: Jesse H. Ruiz
- Spring 2020: Jesse H. Ruiz
- Spring 2019: Jesse H. Ruiz
- Spring 2018: Jeffrey Leslie and Jesse H. Ruiz
A review of the principles of partnership taxation, with an emphasis on the tax consequences of the formation, operation and dissolution of partnerships. Matters discussed include the treatment of leverage, capital accounts, disguised sales, mixing bowls, anti-abuse rules and other aspects of partnership taxation. This class has a final exam. Participation may be considered in final grading. Prerequisite: Introductory Income Tax.
- Spring 2021: Richard M. Lipton and Maher Haddad
- Spring 2020: Richard M. Lipton and Maher Haddad
- Spring 2019: Richard M. Lipton
Poverty and Housing Law Clinic
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 Legal Aid Chicago, 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.
- Spring 2022: Lawrence Wood
- Winter 2022: Lawrence Wood
- Spring 2021: Lawrence Wood
Presence: Performance Skills for Lawyers
This seminar examines the performance, improvisation, storytelling, and engagement skills necessary to help you excel as an attorney and beyond. Through a series of interactive group exercises and games, performance theory discussions, and individual assignments, we will explore how to tap into your unique, authentic voice to positively engage others and better represent your clients. By the end of this course, you should be able to speak and move with more freedom and presence, listen fully and authentically, and joyfully connect with audiences of all sizes and backgrounds. No prior performance or public speaking experience necessary; just bring your full attention, sense of curiosity and play, and willingness to express yourself to each class.
This is a performance skills course, so in-class participation, discussion, and presentations will be the basis for evaluation.
- Autumn 2021: Paul S. Marchegiani
- Autumn 2020: Paul S. Marchegiani
Pretrial Litigation: Strategy and Advocacy
This seminar will focus on litigation skills and strategies that are instrumental in the day-to-day life of any litigator. Indeed, a lawyer will use many of the same strategies and skills in both the pretrial and trial phases of litigation. Students will learn how to evaluate and develop fact and legal theories; develop themes; take and defend fact and expert witness depositions; draft pretrial motions; and use various tactics to prepare a case for trial. The seminar will use a variety of learning methodologies, including lectures and mock exercises. The student's grade will based on performance in mock exercises and written work product. This class requires a series of research papers (20-25 pages).
- Winter 2022: Barry Fields
- Winter 2021: Barry Fields
- Winter 2020: Barry Fields
- Winter 2019: Barry Fields
Private Equity Transactions: Issues and Documentation
This seminar will examine from a practical perspective the issues and documentation arising in a typical private equity acquisition transaction. The seminar will follow this type of transaction through its various stages and provide students in-depth and practical experience with common deal issues and drafting contractual provisions to address those issues. The goal of the seminar is to help prepare students for the practical aspects of being a deal lawyer. Coursework will include reading acquisition contracts, cases and legal commentators and weekly written assignments (contract drafting and issue analysis). Grades will be based on class participation and the written assignments. Business Organizations and Contracts are prerequisites. This class requires a series of reaction papers. Participation may be considered in final grading.
- Winter 2022: Mark A. Fennell and Stephen L. Ritchie
- Winter 2021: Mark A. Fennell and Stephen L. Ritchie
- Winter 2020: Mark A. Fennell and Stephen L. Ritchie
- Winter 2019: Mark A. Fennell and Stephen L. Ritchie
- Winter 2018: Mark A. Fennell and Stephen L. Ritchie
Professional Responsibility and the Legal Profession
This course provides a systematic treatment of the law of professional responsibility. The central goal is to understand how the rules of professional conduct guide lawyer conduct and shape the legal profession. Toward that end, we will begin by examining the lawyer's key duties to clients in different contexts, paying attention to differences based on what lawyers do (advocacy, advising, negotiating), where they work (law firms, corporate legal departments, government legal offices, public interest organizations, legal services groups), and what types of clients they represent (individuals, classes, organizations). Drawing upon case materials and problems, our emphasis will be on how lawyers define and resolve ethical problems while promoting their public duties in the real world of practice. We will pay special attention to the two foundational rules of professional responsibility (client confidentiality and conflicts of interests) and will consider how market changes and demographic shifts impact the lawyer's role. Overall, the course is designed to help you think critically about the challenges you will face in the profession you are about to enter and how you can best meet them in the pursuit of your professional goals. This class has a final exam.
- Autumn 2021: Anna-Maria Marshall
- Autumn 2020: Anna-Maria Marshall
- Autumn 2019: Anna-Maria Marshall
- Autumn 2018: Anna-Maria Marshall
- Autumn 2017: Anna-Maria Marshall
Professional Responsibility: Representing Business Organizations
This seminar concerns the rules governing the legal profession and practical applications of the rules, with a focus on representing business organizations. Materials will include the ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct and a casebook; we may also read supplemental materials from time to time. Grades will be based on a final exam, several short response papers, and a class participation component. This seminar will fulfill the professional responsibility requirement. Please note that the first class meeting will take place on January 10 (second week of classes) and a make-up session will be scheduled for the missed class session.
- Winter 2022: Daniel Feeney, Brant Weidner, and John C. Koski
- Winter 2021: Daniel Feeney, John C. Koski, and Brant Weidner
- Winter 2020: Daniel Feeney, John C. Koski, and Brant Weidner
- Winter 2019: Daniel Feeney
Prosecution and Defense Clinic
The Prosecution and Defense Clinic provides students with an opportunity to learn about the criminal justice system through: (1) a 2-quarter seminar taught by a former Assistant United States Attorney and a career defense lawyer; and, (2) a clinical placement in either a prosecutor's office or public defender's office. The course will familiarize students with the legal procedures and issues which arise in a typical criminal case as well as ethical and other social justice issues encountered by all criminal justice attorneys and courts. The clinic provides students with a unique combination of substantive criminal law and procedure, ethics, trial practice, and hands-on experience through a clinical placement. Each student in the clinic will be responsible for securing a field placement and participating in a pre-screened externship program with a federal or state prosecutor or defender office for the winter and spring quarters. Examples include the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of Illinois or the Public Defender's office in any northern Illinois county. Students will comply with the clinical placement's requirements regarding hours and assignments, and may be expected to research substantive criminal law issues, draft affirmative and responsive pleadings and memos, interview witnesses and clients, assist lawyers with court hearings and where permitted (and with an appropriate 711 license), appear in court under the supervision of practicing attorneys. Other components of each student's grade are: seminar classroom participation; trial practice exercises; journal entries; and, a 10-page practice paper or research paper. There is no final exam (in either quarter) and students will earn up to seven credits for the course, depending on the placement. Because of the practical component, the class size will be limited to twelve 2L or 3L students.
- Winter 2022: Lisa M. Noller and Molly Armour
- Spring 2020: Lisa M. Noller and Molly Armour
- Winter 2020: Lisa M. Noller and Molly Armour
- Spring 2018: Lisa M. Noller and Molly Armour
- Winter 2018: Lisa M. Noller and Molly Armour
Restructuring in Bankruptcy: Strategy and Tactics
This experiential seminar focuses on strategy and tactics in restructuring financially stressed and distressed companies. We will use a case study to illustrate the dynamics of advising boards of directors regarding fiduciary duties, stakeholder negotiations, and complex legal issues facing troubled companies. The seminar alternates between a interactive learning session and an experiential session where students prepare and present to a mock board of directors or management of a financially distressed company. Grades will be based 75% on the in-class presentations, 10% on class participation, and 15% on a 10-15 page client memorandum.
Prerequisite: Bankruptcy (recommended but not required)
- Spring 2021: Chad J. Husnick
- Winter 2019: Chad J. Husnick
The Role and Practice of the State Attorney General
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.
- Spring 2022: Lisa Madigan and Michael Scodro
- Spring 2021: Lisa Madigan and Michael Scodro
- Spring 2020: Michael Scodro and Lisa Madigan
Securities and Exchange Commission Investor Advocacy Project
With faculty supervision, six to eight students will prepare and present a set of investor advocacy proposals to The Investor Advocate and other SEC Staff covering two to four topics. The proposals will include a written report with supporting data and arguments. The project will culminate in a one-hour presentation by students and faculty to The Investor Advocate and SEC Staff. The presentation is tentatively scheduled for May 26 and all work must be completed by that time. It is recommended that students who enroll in this course have taken or are taking Securities Regulation.
- Spring 2021: Anthony J. Casey, M. Todd Henderson, and Joshua C. Macey
Strategic Considerations in Securities and Corporate Governance Litigation
This seminar will introduce students to the most important strategic considerations that lawyers encounter in today's highly sophisticated financial services litigation. The litigators (and corporate lawyers) who concentrate in this area must function in an environment where the stakes are high, leverage is critical, and "victory" is defined by the client, not the court. Accordingly, this seminar examines the critical questions faced in virtually every financial services litigation matter including: (1) which is the most favorable venue for this litigation, including consideration of how legal principles vary jurisdiction by jurisdiction; (2) how does Directors and Officers Liability insurance impact the litigation, itself; (3) strategic considerations relating to the composition of the board and use of special litigation committees; (4) how dispositive motions can be used to, at a minimum, best frame and limit the litigation; (5) how derivative and class certification mechanisms can be used to narrow or defeat claims; (6) how to use the timing and positioning of mediation to produce a favorable result for the client; (7) who of your pool of potential experts should be identified, on what topics, and when to maximize chances of success; and (8) what is jury research and what role does it play in making thematic and settlement decisions. To further the student experience, we will supplement our sessions by bringing some of the nation's top practioners in fields like jury research, D&O insurance, mediation and/or damage analysis to share their years of expertise drawn from real world situations. Grading will be based on class participation and two relatively short papers (under 10 pages) which will focus on discrete topics covered in class and in the reading assignments. Each paper will count for approximately 30% of your grade, and the remaining 40% will be based on class participation.
- Spring 2022: Steven B. Feirson and Joni S. Jacobsen
- Spring 2021: Steven B. Feirson and Joni S. Jacobsen
- Spring 2020: Steven B. Feirson and Joni S. Jacobsen
- Spring 2019: Steven B. Feirson and Joni S. Jacobsen
- Spring 2018: Steven B. Feirson and Joni S. Jacobsen
Strategies and Processes of Negotiations
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. Grading is based on the following: class participation; 3 reflection reports; problem sets; prep notes; final paper
- Winter 2021: George Wu
- Winter 2020: George Wu
- Winter 2019: George Wu
- Winter 2018: George Wu
Structuring Venture Capital, Private Equity, and Entrepreneurial Transactions
Course covers tax, legal, & economic principles applicable to series of interesting, complex, current entrepreneurial transactions, utilizing venture capital (VC) or private equity (PE) 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 both double-tax C corp and flow-through single-tax S corp, partnership, or LLC for variety of VC or PE financed transactions, (5) devising equity-based exec comp program, (6) PE financed restructuring or workout (in or out of bankruptcy) for troubled over-leveraged enterprise and utilizing troubled corp's NOL post-restructuring, (7) exit scenarios for successful VC or PE financed enterprise (such as IPO, series of SEC rule 144 stock sales, sale of company, or merger of company into larger enterprise), & (8) forming VC, PE, or LBO fund.
Substantive subjects include federal income tax, federal securities regulation, state corp, partnership, & LLC law, federal bankruptcy law, fraudulent conveyance law, & other legal doctrines, as well as accounting rules (for exec comp and acquisition accounting) & practical structuring issues (including use of common & preferred stock, subordinated or mezzanine debt, convertible debt & preferred stock, warrants, options, & substantial-risk-of-forfeiture stock), all reviewed in transactional context, with discussion of policy underpinnings & likely future evolution.
No specific prerequisites, but introductory income tax strongly recommended, entity taxation desirable, & knowledge of corp law, securities regulation, bankruptcy, & accounting helpful. However, course book & course book appendix contain sufficient discussion & supplemental material so student can (with careful reading) adequately comprehend these topics. Grade based on final in-class examination. Instructor consent not required.
- Spring 2022: Stephen Ritchie and Mike Carew
- Spring 2021: Stephen Ritchie and Mike Carew
- Spring 2020: Jack Levin and Donald Rocap
- Spring 2019: Jack Levin and Donald Rocap
- Spring 2018: Jack Levin and Donald Rocap
Trade Secrets and Restrictive Covenant Litigation
In this seminar, students will learn how to litigate and try trade secrets and restrictive covenants cases. Two active practitioners in the field will teach this seminar based on actual recent cases. Each class will include instruction on the substance of the law in the field and actual practice techniques, including on-your-feet argument in each class. Specifically, all students will have the opportunity to argue various aspects of trade secrets and restrictive covenants cases, ranging from motions to dismiss, TRO/preliminary injunction motions, motions to compel, summary judgment motions, and post-judgment appeals. This class also requires a series of reaction papers. Participation may be considered in final grading.
- Winter 2021: Brian D. Sieve and Michael B. Slade
- Winter 2019: Brian D. Sieve and Michael B. Slade
This course teaches students the basics of trial advocacy, including formulating a theory of the case, delivering opening and closing statements, conducting direct and cross examinations, introducing exhibits, making and responding to evidentiary objections, navigating technology in the courtroom, and handling experts. The faculty consists of clinical faculty, sitting judges, and trial lawyers from the community who have extensive litigation experience. Students will learn by doing. Each week, faculty will give mini-lectures and then students will perform trial exercises in small groups with faculty supervisors. Each student's performance will be critiqued by a faculty member.
This course is open to 3L students only. The required pre-requisites/co-requisites are Evidence AND first priority is given to students enrolled in the Abrams Environmental Law Clinic, the Criminal and Juvenile Justice Project, the Civil Rights and Police Accountability Project, the Employment Law Clinic, and the Federal Criminal Justice Clinic. Participation may be considered in final grading.
- Spring 2022: Jay Cohen
- Spring 2021: Erica Zunkel, Jorge Alonso, Craig Futterman, Herschella Conyers, and Judith P. Miller
- Spring 2019: Jay Cohen
- Spring 2018: Jay Cohen
U.S. Supreme Court: Theory and Practice
This seminar will provide an in-depth look at the U.S. Supreme Court, with particular emphasis on the skills required to practice successfully in that forum. Students will not only discuss the Court as an institution, but they will also hone skills needed to navigate the certiorari process and to brief and argue before the Court. In addition to class participation, students will be graded on a legal brief (generally 15-20 pages in length) and a moot court presentation.
- Autumn 2021: Sarah M. Konsky and Michael Scodro
- Autumn 2020: Sarah M. Konsky and Michael Scodro
- Autumn 2019: Sarah M. Konsky and Michael Scodro
- Autumn 2018: Sarah M. Konsky and Michael Scodro
- Autumn 2017: Sarah M. Konsky and Michael Scodro
Workshop: Legal Scholarship
This workshop is designed for students (including JSDs and LLMs) who are considering an academic career as well as those who want to improve their public speaking and written expression skills. It may be taken for a full year as a course (every other week in W and S) or only in the fall quarter as a seminar. In the fall young scholars from around the world present works in progress and students write reaction papers and question them as the faculty does in other workshops. As we discuss what does and does not work in these papers and presentations, students will get a clear sense of the types of topics that lead to good papers by young scholars, how good scholarship is structured, and how to give an engaging and clear presentation. In the Winter and Spring students write an original piece of legal scholarship or revise a previously written paper for publication. The goal of the workshop is to create a learning community that will provide students with the type of scholarly atmosphere the faculty here enjoys, something all the more important in the age of Zoom. Students enrolled for the year will be expected to conduct themselves as they would if they were junior faculty members at a top law school, reading and commenting on the work of their peers. Optional lunches to discuss writing will be held throughout the year in the same format as the Faculty Round Table.
The FALL ONLY version is graded on the basis of short reactions papers and class participation, the full year version grade depends on the written paper and its presentation as well. The full year version may fulfill the WP or the SRP.
- Spring 2022: Lisa Bernstein
- Winter 2022: Lisa Bernstein
- Autumn 2021: Lisa Bernstein
- Spring 2021: Lisa Bernstein
- Winter 2021: Lisa Bernstein
- Autumn 2020: Lisa Bernstein
- Spring 2020: Lisa Bernstein
- Winter 2020: Lisa Bernstein
- Autumn 2019: Lisa Bernstein
- Spring 2019: Lisa Bernstein
- Winter 2019: Lisa Bernstein
- Autumn 2018: Lisa Bernstein
- Spring 2018: Lisa Bernstein
- Winter 2018: Lisa Bernstein
- Autumn 2017: Lisa Bernstein
World Bank Practicum
This practicum involves preparing memoranda on various issues for the Legal Department of the World Bank under the supervision of Professor Ginsburg. Students work in small teams to analyze an array of policy and legal issues. Past topics have ranged from an analysis of sovereign wealth, to lending in post-conflict zones, to a study of remedies. The course is limited to a small number of students each quarter. The course will involve teams of two students preparing a research memo. In class participation and memo quality are used to evaluate a student's grade.
- Spring 2021: Tom Ginsburg
- Spring 2019: Tom Ginsburg
- Autumn 2018: Tom Ginsburg
- Spring 2018: Tom Ginsburg
- Winter 2018: Tom Ginsburg
- Autumn 2017: Tom Ginsburg
Writing and Research in the US Legal System
In this seminar, international LLM students learn research and writing skills essential to the practice of U.S. law. Students learn how to use these skills to win arguments, persuade clients and sharpen their own thinking. We discuss and practice the major principles of legal writing in plain English - no jargon, no legalese. The class functions largely as a workshop where we apply multiple research techniques and analyze the impact of various writing styles. Students meet individually with the instructor throughout the course. Regular class attendance is mandatory. Students must complete all assignments before the take-home examination, which determines the student's grade. This class is open only to LLM students and satisfies the legal research and writing prerequisite for the New York Bar exam.
- Autumn 2021: Elizabeth Duquette and Ariel A. Erbacher
- Autumn 2020, Elizabeth Duquette and Ariel A. Erbacher
- Winter 2020, Elizabeth Duquette and Scott Vanderlin
- Autumn 2019, Elizabeth Duquette and Margaret Schilt
- Winter 2019, Elizabeth Duquette and Margaret Schilt
- Autumn 2018, Elizabeth Duquette and Margaret Schilt
- Winter 2018, Elizabeth Duquette and Margaret Schilt
- Autumn 2017, Elizabeth Duquette and Margaret Schilt