Litigation

PERSONAL INJURY LITIGATION
This course gives a broad and detailed overview of the area of Personal Injury Law. It details of the trial of a typical personal injury case, tried by a young lawyer right out of law school, from claim investigation, pleadings, and discovery to trial, post trial motions, and appeal, focusing on both legal doctrines and tort litigation strategy will be examined. Also discussed are issues from a macro point of view, that is, tort reform and whether the government should be involved in regulating litigation, and if so, to what extent.

PREMISES AND PRODUCT LIABILITY
The fields of Premises Liability and Products Liability are emerging and dynamic. As such, the course will encompass a variety of legal theories including tort law, contracts, warranties, statutory violations and strict liability. The course examines the emerging body of law and science dealing with the Vioxx claims. In particular, the pharmaceutical liability issues as well as ancillary legal claims relating to recent studies indicating that long-term use of Vioxx has produced a significant increase in heart attacks, strokes and death in patients, according to several recent studies. As to Premises Liability, the course assesses the facts and law in an inadequate security case resulting in catastrophic injuries. This will entail a review of the factual circumstances, various causes of action and we will draft pleadings, discovery and review transcripts of testimony in a comprehensive overview of the case. Students will explore the concepts of defects, negligence, reckless misconduct, strict liability, warranty, tangible and intangible products, contribution, indemnity and inadequate security, as well as several specific areas of law peculiar to design and failure to warn defects in a pharmaceutical case. Students will analyze Premises and Products Liability cases in the context of litigation and preparation for jury trial, with an emphasis on tactics and strategies in these fields of the law.

PRETRIAL LITIGATION DRAFTING
This course introduces students to the practice of pre-trial civil dispute resolution. The course consists primarily of a number of exercises relating to those skills typically performed by lawyers engaged in civil dispute resolution, including the initial client interview and the drafting of pleadings, motions, and requests for discovery. The theoretical, strategic, and ethical implications of the lawyer's work will also be discussed.

TRIAL PRACTICE LECTURE AND WORKSHOP
A study of trial methodology, including jury voir dire, opening statements, introduction of evidence through direct and cross examination testimony and exhibits, objections and closing arguments. WORKSHOP: Small group workshops designed to expose students to the litigation practice through simulated civil and criminal trial problems. Students will be required to participate in two mock trial competitions in which they will try both sides of a simulated case. Simultaneous registration in the Trial Practice Lecture is required. Emphasis on demonstration of techniques.

CIVIL PROCEDURE
This course introduces students to the legal principles, policies and procedures embodied in various models of Civil Procedure, i.e., civil litigation, mediation, negotiation, arbitration, etc. The course also examines the substantive principles underlying procedures used in civil cases in federal courts: federalism, the constitutional power of the federal judiciary, the scope of federal court jurisdiction, i.e., personal and subject matter jurisdiction, notice and opportunity to be heard, supplemental jurisdiction, removal, venue, and choice of law concerns. Students are also introduced to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (F.R.C.P.) FRCP determine the course of civil litigation in federal courts. The course emphasizes the procedural patterns of pre-trial litigation and non-litigious methods of dispute resolution, focusing on the ways in which facts are found and law applied in lawsuits and the implications of these processes on later stages of litigation and settlement.

ADVANCED TRIAL ADVOCACY & LITIGATION SKILLS
This course will be evenly divided between the study of trial advocacy and a workshop in litigation and trial techniques. The course will study the proven effective tactics and strategies from pre-trial investigation to preserving the record. Particular areas of study will include developing persuasive arguments, trial strategies and tactics, advanced evidentiary issues, preparation of expert witnesses, effective cross-examination and jury selection. A substantial component of the course will consist of motion practice techniques and deposition strategies. The focus of the course will be to teach both the art and science of trial advocacy and litigation, with an emphasis on building on basic Evidence and Trial Advocacy as well as other litigation-related courses. Course work will cover both civil and criminal cases ranging from negligence and contract cases to complex litigation and class actions, as well as misdemeanors to capital cases, in studying criminal practice. This course will prepare the student for a practice in litigation with an emphasis on the art of trying a civil or criminal case from inception on to conclusion.

ANTITRUST LAW
The United States relies on competition rather than government regulation on private controls to determine what goods are produced and how much is charged for them. This preference for free market rivalry over centralized control is reflected in the laws dealing with interference with competition, such as boycotts, monopolization, price fixing, mergers, tying arrangements, horizontal and vertical restraints, etc. The principal laws that govern such interferences with competition are the Sherman Act, Clayton Act and FTC Act (and state laws dealing with unfair trade actions). The main goal of the course is to learn and apply antitrust analysis and thought, including precedent and public policy, to develop legal principles that advance consumer welfare in various sectors of the economy. Specialized areas such as the interference with competition in intellectual property, sports law and electronic law will also be considered. A portion of the course will also consider principles of competition and antitrust in the European Union, as well as, specialized antitrust discovery and litigation.

CONSUMER PROTECTION
This course will cover the fundamental causes of action and defenses in consumer protection law. It will examine common law antecedents of modern consumer protection law, contract and tort-based causes of action, consumer credit, compulsory disclosure statutes, consumer contract formation issues, collection and foreclosure issues, complex litigation issues of federal and state provisions, civil RICO, qui tam, class actions, and governmental enforcement.

EMPLOYMENT LAW
This course highlights the legal principles involving the employment at will relationship and growing exceptions based on contract, tort and statutory principles. Topics may include claims of wrongful discharge, employment-related torts including retaliatory discharge, defamation, intentional infliction of emotional distress, invasion of privacy, etc., and the basic litigation strategies in employment law cases. The course will also focus on various state and federal laws and court decisions regulating the employment relationship.

 

FEDERAL COURTS
This course builds on Civil Procedure and Constitutional Law I. It covers in detail the jurisdiction of the federal judiciary under Article III and congressional legislation relating to both the U. S. Supreme Court and the lower federal courts; what cases present “federal questions”; federal court authority in cases involving diversity of citizenship; removal of cases from State to federal courts; conflicts between State and federal judicial systems; the law applied in federal courts; and, procedures in federal district courts and intermediate circuit courts of appeals. Federal Courts is a particularly useful course for students interested in civil litigation, in federalism and selection of courts in which to file suites, and in developing a better understanding of Article III, the federal judiciary, and the authority of Congress in regard to the federal court system.

INSTITUTE OF GENERAL PRACTICE I
This course covers the types of issues likely to be encountered by a graduate entering the general practice of law. Students are required to perform the tasks of a practicing lawyer in a business transactional sense. The course addresses the issues in establishing a law firm and reviews law office management, interviewing and counseling clients, the responsibility of lawyers representing clients in litigation, a review of the various .legal entities to operate a business, the difficulty of providing systems to avoid legal conflicts, and strategies to insure the delivery of quality legal services.