Course Descriptions

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  • LAW 513
    (4 Credit Hours)

    In Civil Procedure we study the process by which legal disputes of a civil nature are decided in an adversarial system of justice. This includes how a civil lawsuit begins, which courts may hear the dispute, where the lawsuit may be filed, who may be a party, how parties gather facts to support their claims and defenses, what law governs a case that is filed in federal court, how such a case is resolved, procedural remedies, and the binding effect of a final judgment. Specifically, topics covered may include pleadings, joinder of claims and parties, subject matter jurisdiction, personal jurisdiction, venue, choice of law, discovery, resolution without trial (including summary judgment, default judgment, and dismissal), trials, and issue and claim preclusion. The course involves close examination of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure as well as statutes and constitutional provisions that govern civil litigation. Required for graduation.  Offered beginning Fall 2012.

  • LAW 635
    (2 or 3 Credit Hours)

    Prerequisites: RCC*. Whether sued in federal or state court, whether considered rightly or wrongly initiated, class-action lawsuits are more popular today than ever. Indeed, Congress’ highest-profile litigation reform effort of late – its recently-enacted Class Action Fairness Act – goes directly to this sensation’s heart. Given class actions’ prevalence, well-rounded lawyers need to understand class actions’ substantive, procedural, political, societal, economic, and constitutional nuances and effects. This course will examine multiple substantive class-action areas, such as consumer fraud and deceptive-business practices; price-fixing and market-allocation schemes; and securities and commodities fraud. While considering these various substantive areas, we’ll analyze Federal Rule 23 and its state-court counterparts. We’ll study class-certification procedure in federal and state courts; the requirements necessary for class certification; and the defenses and tactics typically (and not so typically) asserted to defeat it. We’ll also consider competing class certifications’ Due Process, Commerce, and Full Faith and Credit Clause implications; class-action coordination among various competing or complimentary federal and state class-action cases; and class-action settlement issues, such as proper notice, damages allocation, opt-out procedures, and objections. We’ll study why class actions are considered important (or not) to our society and economy; how they contribute to redressing (or exacerbating) consumer wrongs; and how they raise our collective social consciousness or, alternatively, are abused and create (at least arguably) social chaos. Students will leave this course with an understanding and appreciation for the full range of class action issues that new lawyers can expect to encounter in their daily practices, whether their practices concentrate on class action law or other substantive areas.

  • LAW 601
    (4 Credit Hours)

    Prerequisites: RCC*. A survey of the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC), except for Articles 8 and 9, with emphasis on Articles 2, 3, and 4 dealing with sales, negotiable instruments and bank collections. In addition, some consumer laws and federal regulations on sales and bank collections are addressed. Lesser emphasis is given to UCC Articles 2A, 4A, 5 and 7 on leases, wire transfers, letters of credit and documents of title; UCC Article 6 on bulk transfers is also covered briefly.

  • LAW 824
    (3 Credit Hours)

    Prerequisites: RCC, approval by clinical faculty. The Community Advocacy Law Clinic is a one-semester, 3 credit experiential course where students use their legal training to assist our community’s most vulnerable populations: low-income families, children, the elderly, the homeless, and people suffering from physical and mental illness. Students, under the supervision of clinical faculty, will work with judges, prosecutors, defense attorneys, social workers and others to address the legal needs of real clients in a wide variety of matters including adoption, child support, housing, public benefits and special education. Law students will attend a weekly seminar and a weekly supervisor meeting. Law students will be given the opportunity to assist clients from beginning to end - intake, through research and strategy, informal advocacy or going to court. The two goals of the Community Advocacy Law Clinic are to improve the legal skills of law students and to address the unmet legal issues of the poor. Satisfies skills and experiential skills course requirements.

  • LAW 567
    (2 or 3 Credit Hours)

    Prerequisites: RCC*. This course examines and compares constitutional law and structure of governance of different countries of the world. Questions explored include: Why have constitutions? How do the structures of constitutional courts and the practice of judicial review differ in different countries? How do different constitutions deal with separation of powers, legislative process, regime changes, federalism, individual rights and social welfare? The course aims at helping students think systematically about different structures for organizing a government, and different approaches to establishing just, effective and stable forms of governments. Satisfies perspective requirement.

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