Course Descriptions

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  • LAW 698
    (3 Credit Hours)

    Prerequisites: RCC*; Tax I (LAW 607); Tax II (LAW 697). This course focuses primarily on the Federal income tax consequences of corporate ownership reorganizations. It explores corporate combinations, including taxable and tax-free mergers and acquisitions, corporate divisions (spin-offs, split-offs, and split-ups), as well as rearrangements of the capital structure of a single corporation, such as through recapitalizations and stock dividends. It also explores the carryover of tax attributes after corporate combinations

  • LAW 607
    (4 Credit Hours)

    Prerequisites: RCC*. This course provides an introduction to Federal income taxation of the individual, including the concepts of income, deductions, capital transactions, income splitting and tax accounting; use of the Internal Revenue Code and Treasury Regulations; and principles of statutory interpretation, including use of legislative histories, court decisions and administrative rulings.

  • LAW 697
    (4 Credit Hours)

    Prerequisites: RCC*; Tax I (LAW 607), or permission of instructor if concurrently registered for LAW 607. This course examines the basic rules in Subchapters C, S, and K of the Internal Revenue Code, regarding the Federal income taxation of business enterprises, whether the enterprise is organized as a corporation, partnership, or limited liability company. It includes discussion of the formation of corporations and partnerships, distributions of profits from the entity, termination of the enterprise, choice-of-entity concerns, and other related topics. It is recommended for anyone who will engage heavily in either a tax or business practice.

  • LAW 604
    (2 or 3 Credit Hours)

    Prerequisites: RCC*; Tax I (LAW 607). Topics covered include organizational structure of tax exempt and charitable organizations; policy and practice of preferred tax treatment for selected organizations and gifts to them; statutes, regulations, and IRS practice; legislative origins, judicial interpretations, and policy consideration; tests of qualification, disqualification, and limited tax preference; mechanics of securing and retaining exemption; qualified exemption; unrelated business income; private inurement; political activity; denial or loss of exemption; return and reporting requirements; private foundation treatment; comparative tax treatment of nonexempt and nonprofit organizations. Offered infrequently.

  • LAW 606
    (3 or 4 Credit Hours)

    Prerequisites: RCC*; Tax I (LAW 607) or Estates & Trusts (LAW 609). Federal gift, estate and generation skipping taxation of wealth transfers will be analyzed primarily through the concepts of completed gifts and gross estate inclusions with some study of deductions and the tax itself. Federal income taxation of estates, simple trusts and complex trusts, including distributions to beneficiaries, with some study of grantor trust rules and income in respect of a decedent will also be covered. Income taxation of trusts will be covered when the course is offered for 4 credit hours.

  • LAW 628
    (3 Credit Hours)

    Prerequisites: RCC*; Tax I (LAW 607). This course examines the U.S. Federal Income Taxation of both inbound transactions (the U.S. income tax consequences of business and investment activities in the U.S. by foreigners) and outbound transactions (the U.S. income tax consequences of foreign business and investment activities by U.S. taxpayers). It will examine, in particular, (1) the jurisdictional rules regarding the right to tax income in the international context, (2) the “source” rules (domestic or foreign) for income and deductions, (3) the foreign tax credit, (4) problem of “deferral” of foreign income earned by subsidiaries of U.S. parents, and (5) the U.S. tax consequences of using foreign currency.

  • LAW 647
    (3 Credit Hours)

    Prerequisites: RCC*; Tax I (LAW 607). This course will provide a survey of tax procedure, including the rules for practice before the IRS under Circular 230 and various tax litigation issues. The course will also provide a survey of the tax penalties and tax crimes that transactional and controversy tax practitioners must regularly consider and mange in representing private and government clients. Transactional tax advisors need to consider penalties and crimes when structuring deals and preparing opinion letters to support those deals. Without an understanding of opinion letters and the penalty or crime risks to a client’s proposed deal structure, a transactional tax attorney fails to represent his client’s interests adequately. Indeed, this lawyer and the relvant law firm may themselves be at risk. Likewise, tax controversy attorneys must have a comprehensive understanding of penalties and crimes to represent clients effectively, whether in settlement negotiations, court or administrative proceedings. These attorneys must be able to identify the range of applicable penalties and crimes, address proof convincingly and understand relevant defenses.

    Students in this class will examine relevant statutes, regulations and case law. The course will cover both the substantive law and procedural issues. Penalties addressed will include tax shelter, return preparer, responsible person, accuracy-related, delinquency and civil fraud. Methods of proof and defenses to these penalties and crimes are, of course critical to client representation and will, therefore, be covered. Satisfies the Administrative Law requirement.

  • LAW 762
    (3 Credit Hours)

    Prerequisites: RCC*. This course will explore the following idea and why it might be important for law: just exactly what is a "firm" (or any other "organization" for that matter), how does the law conceive of "firms," and what difference does it make? An underlying theme of the course, not surprisingly, is that answers to these questions might make a very big difference, and the course will ask what the law could learn from them from economics and from a specialized area of social science literature, improbably neglected among legal academics, that goes by the name “the theory of organization.” This body of thought has special value in understanding business entities and, indeed, in understanding law generally. The course will begin with generally adopted ideas about what constitutes the "firm" at use in the legal literature and those in economics. It will consider the mainstream evolution of the concept in transaction cost economics and the “nexus of contracts” theory currently predominant among legal economists. The course would then consider critiques of the traditional concept and its economic evolution, including the Legal Realist perspective, the Critical Legal Studies (CLS) perspective, and other viewpoints. Finally, in a sense as its capstone, the course would delve into general, non-normative consideration of the theory of organization, to show how organization theorists have cast doubt on the ability of traditional models and traditional critiques to explain real-world organizations. Those organizations, it turns out, are often complex and ambiguous places where traditional models of human motivation are not up to the task of explanation. At its core, the course would seek to highlight the practical and political significance of the particular theory of organizations chosen by a legal system. The course will be well suited for students with a social science background, and may also be of interest to students interested in business organizations, management, and counseling business clients.

    The grade will be based mainly on one seminar paper of sufficient length and content to justify 3 hours of credit. In addition, some portion of the grade will be based on a few short assignments in which each student identifies the “main idea” of papers that are read in the course. The course satisfies the upper level writing requirement and the perspective elective requirement. Permission of the instructor is required. Offered infrequently.

  • LAW 512
    (3 Credit Hours)

    Torts considers injuries to persons and property, both intentional and unintentional, and may include physical, dignitary, and economic harms. The course examines the three basic theories of civil liability--intentional torts, negligence, and strict liability--and considers issues of duty, causation, and defenses to liability. The course may also consider the overall goals of the torts system, the allocation of responsibility between judge and jury, and the interplay of statues and the common law process. Required for graduation.

  • LAW 653
    (2 Credit Hours)

    Prerequisites: RCC; Copyright, Patent & Trademark Law, LAW 658, recommended but not required. This course will cover the constitutional, statutory, and common law attributes of trademark law; the rights and remedies that trademark law provides for producers; the protection that trademark law provides for competitors and consumers; and the intersection of American trademark law with other forms of intellectual property protection, with the First Amendment, and with international law. Students are expected to master the substantive law of trademark, but the major goal of the course is to teach students how to use the law to advance their clients' interests in commercial symbols by requiring students to use their professional judgment in a counseling context. Grading will be based on three short open research memos.

  • LAW 826
    (2 to 5 Credit Hours)

    Prerequisites: RCC*; approval of clinical faculty. The Urban Development Law Clinic offers students the opportunity to practice law under the supervision of a staff attorney. The Clinic’s clients are neighborhood and community-based nonprofit corporations producing and managing affordable housing, initiating economic development and enhancing the quality of life in urban neighborhoods. The Clinic operates as a small firm or practice group providing a variety of legal services to clients. The work students undertake in the Clinic is primarily transactional, consisting of: legal research to address specific issues and problems raised by clients; drafting leases, contracts, and other documents and forms; designing and conducting training programs for clients; and general counseling and advising of clients regarding legal, corporate and business matters. The goal of the Clinic is two-fold: to serve the real needs of the urban community while enabling students to acquire legal skills and experience under supervision of experienced staff attorneys and the clinic’s director. Satisfies the skills course requirement. Previously called Urban Development Law Clinic.

  • LAW 634
    (3 Credit Hours)

    Prerequisites: RCC. Transition to Practice will focus on teaching students the fundamental skills that all lawyers need to be successful: problem-solving, interviewing, counseling and negotiating. The course uses a combination of inter-related classroom work, simulations, and research, as well as reading and writing assignments to build these critical skills. The grade will be based on observed simulations, written assignments/work products, class participation, assessments and evaluations, and a capstone assignment.

    Permission of the instructor(s) is required. The course is designed to prepare students for participation in a clinic or externship so preference will be given to second year students.

  • LAW 620
    (3 Credit Hours)

    Prerequisites: RCC*. This course will consider how one goes about litigating transnational cases. Such litigation may involve a transnational claim structure and may involve public or private litigation. Some aspects of U.S. substantive law having extraterritorial effect will be considered (for example, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act). Procedural subjects to be studied include jurisdiction, effectuation of service on parties overseas, problems of conducting pre-trial discovery outside the United States and enforcement of foreign judgments. Offered infrequently.

  • LAW 663
    (2 or 3 Credit Hours)

    Prerequisites: RCC*; Evidence (LAW 661). The course will analyze the trial process from selection of the jury through final argument and jury instructions. Students will participate in frequent exercises involving portions of the trial process and will meet in both large and small group classes. Satisfies the skills course requirement.

  • LAW 863
    (2 Credit Hours)

    Prerequisites: RCC*; Evidence (LAW 661) recommended. The course is designed to promote professionalism in the litigation arena in both the preparation and trying of cases. The course consists of preparing for and participating in mock trial competitions. The preparation consists of approximately sixteen supervised weekend classes per semester. The trial competitions consist of a one-day cross-town competition in the Fall and a three-day regional competition in the Spring. During these competitions, each class member will argue their case against students from law schools throughout the country. The course is open to all second, third, and fourth year law students. Up to eight students are selected for the competition team each year.

    A try-out competition is held each Fall to select a team that will be together for the entire year. In order to be selected, students must give an opening statement or closing argument based on a hypothetical case in front of a panel of attorneys and former trial team members. The team meets throughout the Fall and Spring semesters, although credit will not be allocated until the Spring semester.

    The American Association for Justice organizes the Spring trial competition. Each year the AAJ drafts a fictional legal case, complete with witness depositions, exhibits, and jury instructions. Using the Federal Rules of Evidence and the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, teams develop arguments and create their own case theory based on the assigned case. In competition, students from one member school represent one side and compete against students from another school who represent the opposing side. Teams represent both plaintiff and defendant in successive rounds. Scoring is based on how well the students articulate their arguments and develop their case theory. The competitions are judged by actual sitting judges as well as lawyers from the community.

    The team is supervised and taught by attorneys from the Reminger law firm. The course is graded pass/fail. Each student’s final grade is determined based upon their individual performance during practices and at the trial competition. Each student’s effort, preparation, and completion of class assignments contribute toward their final grade. The course requires a greater time commitment than the usual two credit course but the students will gain considerable competencies as trial advocates. Satisfies the skills course requirement.

  • LAW 864
    (2 Credit Hours)

    Prerequisites: RCC*, Trial Advocacy Competition (LAW 863), and Evidence (LAW 661). The course is designed to promote professionalism in the litigation arena in both the preparation and trying of cases. The structure of the course is the same as Trial Advocacy Competition (LAW 863): students must try out for membership on the team in the fall, and then prepare for and participate in mock trial competitions. The substance of the course is different: in this advanced trial advocacy course students will build on the prior year’s experiences and gain a deeper understanding of trial variety of legal issues. First, the spring competition alternates year to year between criminal and civil matters and involves different claims, defenses and evidentiary matters. Second, in addition to the fully preparing for the competitions, students in this advanced course will prepare for examining experts, prepare for and present a mock voir dire, and serve as mentors for new students in the Trial Advocacy Competition course.

    The team is supervised and taught by attorneys from the Reminger law firm. The course is graded pass/fail. Each student’s final grade is determined based upon their individual performance during practices and at the trial competition. Each student’s effort, preparation, and completion of class assignments contributes toward their final grade. The course requires a greater time commitment than the usual two credit course but the students will gain considerable competencies as trial advocates. Satisfies the skills course requirement.

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