(ADVOCACY AND LEGAL SKILLS - 2085)
Depositions are critical to pre-trial litigation. The discovery process culminates in the deposition phase. Most cases are lost, won, or settled because of information gleaned at a deposition, including how a witness might perform at trial. Deposition testimony may lead to the resolution of a case through summary judgment or at least, limit the issues for trial. Attorneys may modify trial strategies after depositions. Because depositions play such an important role in litigation, the majority of junior litigation attorneys can expect to deal with depositions in some manner from the very start of their careers. This experiential, interactive course will introduce students to deposition practice. It is a five-day intensive intersession course which will meet for 4-1/2 to 6 hours each day (final schedule will be posted in the registration materials.) Using a simulated case file, a textbook and in-class exercises, students will learn and develop deposition skills. Students can expect to: understand the rules, goals, and uses of depositions, prepare for a deposition, develop case theory, formulate questions for a deposition, learn effective techniques for obtaining helpful testimony and minimizing damaging testimony, practice objections, and use documents. Students will perform in-class exercises and observe and critique their fellow students' deposition skills. The course will culminate in a four-hour deposition in which students will be paired with an opposing attorney to depose an opposing witness and defend his/her own witnesses. The professor will supply witnesses. Grades will be based on class participation and preparedness (25%), four written pieces (Notice of Deposition, Question Formation Practice, Deposition Outline, Self-Evaluation of Mock Deposition) (25%) and a final mock deposition (50%).
DEVELOPMENT OF MODERN BANKRUPTCY: THE INNOVATORS
(BANKRUPTCY LAW - 4070)
This course approaches recent bankruptcy history from the perspective of a major participant in the development of some aspect of bankruptcy law or practice. Students will research the issues and cases in which the subject played an important part. From that material, the class will prepare an interview script including questions for the subject and will participate in a videotaped interview of the selected person. Evaluation will be based on an examination that will require a full understanding of the interviewee's problems and objectives and the court decisions and legislative enactments that resulted from the interviewee's efforts. Class participation and written work may be factored into the final grade. Pre-requisite for J.D. students: CREDITORS' RIGHTS
(DIRECTED RESEARCH - 1000)
The course in Directed Research is designed to afford students the opportunity to prepare a major research paper of publishable quality under the direction of a faculty adviser who has expertise in a particular area of the law. Students are responsible for obtaining the sponsorship of a faculty member prior to registering for the course. Students must complete an "Approval of Directed Research" form with the signatures of the faculty adviser and the Associate Dean to be submitted to the Registrar at the time of registration. Academic credit will be awarded only if the student has successfully completed all requirements by the end of the student's penultimate semester at the Law School. Completion of requirements means that the student shall have produced a final writing of at least 8000 words in length (approximately thirty pages), inclusive of footnotes, that, except for the minimum grade, satisfies the guidelines in place at the time of registration and shall have prepared a detailed outline and have satisfied any other preparatory steps required by the instructor. Pre-requisite: LEGAL WRITING II. As with any course, Directed Research may be taken only once in a student’s academic program.
DISPUTE RESOLUTION FOR SPORTS: NEGOTIATION, MEDIATION, AND ARBITRATION
(INTERNATIONAL SPORTS LAW - 1000)
This course is taken by students in the International & Comparative Sports Law LL.M. program. Building upon doctrinal material taught in the co-requisite classes, students will have the opportunity to acquire basic skills in alternative dispute resolution directly relevant to the sports marketplace. This intensive, interactive course first introduces students to an overview of arbitration, negotiation, and mediation theories and practices in international sports, and then develops skills for effective client representation in arbitration, negotiation, and mediation. This course will examine attorney responsibilities in advising clients about dispute resolution options, in preparing both the case and the client for arbitration or mediation, in representing clients in the mediation session or arbitral hearing, and in drafting ADR clauses. The course will include students participating in a mock mediations and negotiations. Outcomes of this course will include basic competency in negotiation, mediation, and arbitration skills to assist with representation of international sports law clients and the ability to assist clients in exploring alternatives to litigation in resolving contractual and labor disputes. Successful completion of this course is mandatory for an LL.M. in International & Comparative Sports law. Student's final grade will be based on one quiz (5%), the quality of participation in class simulations (30%), and a final exam (65%).
DOMESTIC RELATIONS IN BANKRUPTCY
(BANKRUPTCY LAW - 2030)
This course will examine issues such as the enforceability and dischargeability of antenuptial, divorce, and separation agreements; maintenance and support obligations; and other pre-bankruptcy consensual arrangements including the rights and obligations of spouses of persons in bankruptcy. Pre-requisite for J.D. students: CREDITORS' RIGHTS or FAMILY LAW.
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE LITIGATION CLINIC
(ADVOCACY AND LEGAL SKILLS – 4010/4030)
8 credits: 4 in Fall, 4 in Spring
St. John's University School of Law is partnering with the New York Legal Assistance Group (NYLAG) to provide students with an exciting, well-supervised, hands-on clinical experience. Clinic students, working in pairs, represent clients in family offense and visitation matters in the Queens and Manhattan family courts. Students have the opportunity to handle cases from inception to final disposition, including conducting client interviews, seeking orders of protection, negotiating settlements, making all court appearances, and, where indicated, taking the case to trial. Clinic students enroll in the domestic violence clinic placement and in a two-credit seminar component which meets at the law school. The seminar provides clinic students with substantive knowledge in aspects of family, matrimonial, immigration, and criminal law relevant to the practice portion of the course. In addition, students will be introduced to the integration of law and psychology specific to intimate violence and participate in skills classes in interviewing, safety planning, case preparation, evidence gathering, legal writing, trial advocacy and negotiation skills. This two-semester course maximizes each student's opportunity to fully service each client while maintaining continuous client representation on sensitive legal matters. Students spend approximately 12 - 15 hours a week in court or preparing their cases at the NYLAG clinic office. Students will be chosen based upon an interview with the professor. Evidence and a trial advocacy course are pre- or co-requisite courses and interested students are strongly urged to take Family Law and Family Violence and Sexual Assault. Pre-requisite or Co-requisite: EVIDENCE AND TRIAL ADVOCACY - CRIMINAL OR TRIAL ADVOCACY-CONCENTR. CIVIL OR TRIAL ADVOCACY-CONCENTR. CRIM
DRAFTING: ADR DOCUMENTS
(ADVOCACY AND LEGAL SKILLS - 9050)
This interactive seminar is designed to teach students the skills to draft the documents necessary to inform clients about ADR alternatives, to draft effective alternate dispute resolution provisions in commercial contracts, and to draft understandable enforceable settlement agreements for successfully mediated matters or negotiated settlements. Students will be required to draft arbitration and mediation clauses, client memos, and settlement agreements. The course will also address post-dispute mediation and arbitration agreements. Work product will be critiqued by the instructor and by fellow students. Students also will have the opportunity to discuss their drafts with practicing professionals. Although the course is designed to be applicable to all types of contracts, there will be a focus on matters relating to the media industry. Grades will be based on a series of assigned papers, a final presentation, and class participation.
DRAFTING: BANKRUPTCY & COMMERCIAL AGREEMENTS
(BANKRUPTCY LAW - 2040)
This practice-oriented course will examine how to draft documents such as agreements pertaining to cash collateral, loans, asset purchases, disclosure statements, reorganization plans and post-petition loans. Pre-requisite for J.D. students: CREDITORS' RIGHTS
(ADVOCACY AND LEGAL SKILLS - 8000)
This course provides intensive instruction in the drafting of contemporary commercial contracts. Students learn how to translate a business deal into contract concepts, how to structure the agreement, and how to draft contract provisions clearly, precisely, and efficiently. Written exercises are assigned for each class; in addition, students draft a full-length agreement and redraft the agreement following a critique. Some negotiation is included. Grades will be based on several short drafting assignments (totaling 30%), an initial and a revised draft of a contract (totaling 55%); and class participation (15%). N.B. Students taking this course are not permitted to take Professor Boyle's Drafting: Litigation Documents & Contracts.
DRAFTING: ENVIRONMENTAL LAW
(ENVIRONMENTAL LAW - 1050)
This class is designed to teach students how to write documents that are common in the practice of environmental law. At the discretion of the instructor, the course may focus on coastal and maritime environmental issues. Students will write assignments, including a client letter, a pleading, and a trial or appellate brief. Grades will be based on the three written assignments. This course satisfies the Advanced Practice Writing Requirement.
DRAFTING: FEDERAL CIVIL PRACTICE
(STATE AND FEDERAL PRACTICE - 3020)
This course is the federal analogue of Civil Practice Seminar-State. The course is designed to give students experience in drafting the legal papers necessary to prosecute a civil action in federal court, including pleadings, amended pleadings, discovery requests, dispositive and non-dispositive motions, post-trial motions, and appellate papers. Assignments will be developed through hypothetical case files and will vary from time to time. Grades are based upon written submissions, oral presentations and class participation.
DRAFTING: FEDERAL CRIMINAL PRACTICE
(ADVOCACY AND LEGAL SKILLS - 8030)
This course is intended to expose students to the investigative process and to develop the students' ability to write affidavits, charging documents (complaints and indictments), motions (suppression and sentencing), memoranda, and other writings in a "paper" prosecution. Students, as a group, will be required to interview the investigating special agent and the defendant, as well as review the case file for pertinent case information. Students will be expected to utilize legal research, required readings, and information provided by witnesses and the case files to prepare the writing assignments. The course will utilize an evolving fact pattern during the semester, and students will assume the role of either prosecutor or defense attorney for several assignments. Students will have one week to return assignments, though with respect to some assignments students will submit drafts prior to submitting the students' final work product. Additionally, it is expected that when preparing responses, the students will respond to earlier submissions of the students' peers. The final grade will be based cumulatively upon class participation and written assignments, with more complicated assignments carrying greater weight. Students may find Criminal Procedure: Investigation and/or Criminal Procedure: Adjudication to be helpful preparation but are not required pre-requisites. Pre-requisite: LEGAL WRITING II and CRIMINAL LAW
DRAFTING: INTERNATIONAL CONTRACTS
(ADVOCACY AND LEGAL SKILLS - 9060)
This course provides intensive instruction in the drafting of commercial contracts in an international context. Students learn how to translate a business deal into contract terms, how to organize those terms into a coherent contract, and how to draft clearly, precisely, and efficiently. Students also explore the special considerations that arise in international transactions, including choice of law, choice of forum, and dispute resolution. Drafting skills are developed and assessed through regular in-class drafting exercises and weekly graded drafting assignments of increasing complexity. For the final exam, students draft a complete contract between commercial parties of different nationalities, working from a set of facts, a model form, and other materials.
DRAFTING: IP LICENSES
(INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY - 2020)
Pre-requisite - Introduction to Intellectual Property; students may also wish to consider taking Copyright, Trademark, or Patent Law either prior to or simultaneously with enrollment in this course. License agreements are the primary tool employed in the commercial use and exploitation of intellectual property. Licenses provide the vehicle for owners of copyrights, patents, trademarks, rights of publicity, and trade secrets to generate revenue from their property and monetize their interests in such intangibles. For students interested in practicing in IP-driven areas of law (i.e., copyright, trademark, patent, entertainment, arts, sports, publishing, biotech, pharma, etc.), this course will provide the advanced-level skills of analyzing and drafting documents used to transfer, lend, securitize and otherwise exploit the key elements of intellectual property that underlie these areas of law. Grades will be based on a combination of a final examination and two writing assignments. This class will satisfy the Advanced Practice Writing Requirement. Pre-requisite: INTRODUCTION TO INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY
DRAFTING: JUDICIAL OPINIONS
(ADVOCACY AND LEGAL SKILLS - 9070)
Students will critically examine various models of legal reasoning and case resolution and will engage in detailed opinion studies that consider reasoning, substance, tone, and style. Through in-class exercises and two graded opinion assignments, students will develop their skills in drafting clear and persuasive judicial opinions in difficult cases. Grades will be based on class participation, in-class drafting exercises, and two graded opinion assignments. This class is especially helpful for students interested in pursuing judicial clerkships. The course satisfies the Advanced Practice Writing Requirement.
DRAFTING: LAND USE
(PROPERTY - 2000)
In this course students will learn to draft documents used in Land Use transactions from the perspective of all parties. Discussions and assignments will be based upon hypothetical fact patterns and drafting of documents, pleadings and related material for Land Use Boards and courts. The course will inform students to identify issues that arise in the preparation and submission of land use applications as well as contested land use cases and to address them in a clear and well-organized fashion. The course will cover the common documents required for Zoning and Planning issues, including client letters, Zoning Board and Planning Board and other Board applications, appeals from land use boards, drafting of contracts to acquire land use subject to zoning approval as well as drafting litigation documents related to contested land use matters. Grades will be based on the written assignments and class participation. This course satisfies the Advanced Practice Writing Requirement.
DRAFTING: LITIGATION DOCUMENTS & CONTRACTS
(ADVOCACY AND LEGAL SKILLS - 2050)
This course is designed to expose students to the various types of Legal Writing and Legal Drafting encountered in law practice. Students will negotiate and draft various types of contracts and will receive intensified instruction in the researching and written discussion of complex legal issues. Students will also receive instruction on preparation of litigation papers and written advocacy. There will be approximately eight written assignments, but no term paper or final examination. N.B. Students who take Professor Boyle's section of the course are not permitted to take the two-credit Drafting: Contracts course.
DRAFTING: NEW YORK CIVIL PRACTICE
(STATE AND FEDERAL PRACTICE - 2050)
In addition to drafting the papers necessary in the prosecution or defense of a civil action or proceeding in the New York State Courts, students will learn how to utilize the Civil Practice Law and Rules and related practice acts in hypothetical situations. While the specific subjects addressed in the course may vary from time to time, they are likely to include the drafting and amendment of pleadings; pre-trial, trial and post-trial motion practice; deposition workshops; the role of Article 78 proceedings; appellate court procedure, and the like. Grades are based upon written submissions, oral presentations, and classroom participation.
DRAFTING: REAL ESTATE TRANSACTIONS
(PROPERTY - 1050)
Open to Seniors Only. This course is a transaction-oriented course dealing with modern real estate problems. The major work product is a series of drafted agreements. Before undertaking actual drafting, students analyze a hypothetical transaction on an integrated functional basis. This involves primarily the interplay of Property, Partnership, Corporation and Tax rules, and how to use them to achieve maximum objectives. Pertinent background reading is assigned in connection with each transaction. Preliminary analysis leads to particular structuring or restructuring of a transaction and provides the basis for the drafting of the appropriate instruments. Grades are based upon class assignments and a final examination.
DRAFTING: WILLS & TRUST INSTRUMENTS
(TRUSTS AND ESTATES - 1000)
This course is designed to develop practical skills in the drafting of wills, trusts and other instruments involved in donative transfer as well as an understanding of the goals and limitations of the drafting process itself. The importance of client counseling as a means of insuring maximum tax efficiency is stressed as well as the range of legal tools available to the drafter in addressing a variety of human situations. Topics to be included are pecuniary legacies, legacies of tangible personal property, devises of specific realty, residuary bequests, will substitutes, intervivos trusts, and gifts on condition. Grades are based upon a final examination and graded drafting assignments. Pre-requisite: TRUSTS AND ESTATES