Course Descriptions

Spring 2013 Class Descriptions

Immigration Clinic I (Jan Joseph Bejar)
LWVL530

2-4 credit(s)
Requirement: Skills
Concentration(s): Public Interest Law (JD)

Students gain practical experience through interviewing, counseling, and representing clients with immigration-related problems. Students complete forms and draft documents on behalf of clients. Students also attend and/or participate at hearings at Immigration Court. Weekly meetings are held with the clinic supervisor to discuss immigration law, practical application and casework. The clinic is graded on a 4-tier Pass-Fail basis. No Prerequisites.

Immigration Clinic II (Jan Joseph Bejar)
LWVL531

2-4 credit(s)
Requirement: Skills
Concentration(s): Public Interest Law (JD)
Prerequisite(s): Immigration Clinic I

Students gain practical experience through interviewing, counseling, and representing clients with immigration-related problems. Students complete forms and draft documents on behalf of clients. Students also attend and/or participate at hearings at Immigration Court. Weekly meetings are held with the clinic supervisor to discuss immigration law, practical application and casework. The clinic is graded on a 4-tier Pass-Fail basis.

Immigration Law (Sean Olender)
LWIC529

3 credit(s)
Concentration(s): International Law (LLMC), Public Interest Law (JD), International Law (JD), LLM in International Law (LLMI)

Why and how did the regulation of immigration begin? What maze of federal law and regulations, agencies, courts, “official” memos and constitutional law control outcomes? What does it mean to be a citizen? Should citizenship emanate from parentage, location of birth, or express consent? US companies import thousands of workers annually and immigration is interwoven into commerce, recruiting and HR. Companies that poorly manage immigration lose competitiveness and risk penalties. Abercrombie & Fitch was fined more than $1 million in 2010 for I-9 violations and in 2011 public schools in Prince George’s County Maryland paid $4.2 million for improperly calculating H-1B wages. Immigration laws both separate and reunite families. President Obama deported more foreign nationals in one term than any other US President, but also used extraordinary power to offer deferred action and work authorization to possibly more than one million undocumented young people. And international crises and politics drive the migration of refugees and asylees. This general immigration course will briefly survey the history of immigration law and introduce basic concepts, agency organization and jurisdiction. This course will explore five principal areas: (1) citizenship, (2) business immigration, (3) family immigration, (4) relief from removal and waivers, and (5) asylum and refugee law. Grades will be based on a midterm and final exam.

Income Tax of Trusts & Estates (Ann Harris)
LWTE536

3 credit(s)
Concentration(s): LLM in Taxation (LLMT)
Prerequisite(s): Tax I, Trusts & Estates: Wills

The federal income taxation of trusts, estates, and their beneficiaries; distributable net income; distribution deductions for simple and complex trusts and estates; grantor trusts; income in respect of a decedent; and throwback rules. Prerequisites: Both Tax I and T&E: Wills & Trusts. This is an advanced tax course with priority enrollment for LLM in Taxation students.

Intellectual Property Seminar: Current Issues in Intellectual Property (Lisa P. Ramsey)
LWIP540

3 credit(s)
Requirement: Writing
Concentration(s): Intellectual Property (JD), Intellectual Property (LLMC), Intellectual Property Law (LLMG)

This advanced seminar is intended for students interested in cutting-edge intellectual property law. Students will learn practical legal skills while we explore currently unresolved issues in copyright, patent, and trademark law. Past seminars included topics such as intellectual property rights in virtual worlds, parody fair use of copyrighted works on YouTube, patent reform, and trademarks and free speech. Students are required to write a research paper and present that paper to the class during the second half of the semester. The grade will be based on the paper, presentation, and class participation; there is no final examination. Completion of at least one of the following courses: Copyright Law, Intellectual Property Survey, Patent Law, Trademark Law, Trademark Seminar, or Trade Secrets.

Intellectual Propery Law Speaker Series (Ted Sichelman, David McGowan)
LWIP555

1 credit(s)

The IP Law Speaker Series will feature four distinguished speakers, typically leading academics, during the semester. The speakers will address a variety of topics in patent, trademark, copyright, and trade secret law. Students participating in this course will attend all of the speaker sessions, as well an introductory and concluding non-speaker session with the professors. Students will be required to draft a 1-2 page comment for each presented paper, which will be graded. Students must have taken a course in some area of intellectual property, or have work experience in the field, to register for the course.

International Arbitration (Richard W. Page)
LWIC530

2 credit(s)
Requirement: Skills
Concentration(s): International Law (JD), International Law (LLMC), LLM in International Law (LLMI)
Prerequisite(s): The only required prerequisite is a spirit of adventure.

The New York Convention establishes a framework for international arbitration. More nations have acceded to the New York Convention than any other treaty in the history of the United Nations. This class will explain the system of international arbitration which has become the preferred method of dispute resolution among businesses throughout the world. The class will feature power point presentations, including photos and music from around the world. We will conduct a mock arbitration based upon a fact pattern of two USD law students who take a trip to Buenos Aires, then build a business extending from San Diego to Argentina, Brazil and beyond. LLM students will learn about an international legal structure and acquire practical skills which will be applicable when they return home (wherever that maybe). 2L and 3L students will learn arbitration law reaching from San Diego, California and the United States into the international arena. The final exam will be held during the last class meeting. Students are graded by the standard letter grading system.

International Business Transactions (Ralph H. Folsom)
LWIC533

3 credit(s)
Concentration(s): Business and Corporate Law (LLMC), LLM in Business and Corporate Law (LLMB), International Law (JD), Business and Corporate Law (JD), International Law (LLMC), LLM in International Law (LLMI)

This course provides an introduction to the legal aspects of private international sales and investment transactions. Topics include sales contracts, letters of credit, bills of lading, investment and financing contracts, and resolution of private sales and investment disputes. Regulatory aspects of international transactions, including export licensing, regulatory jurisdiction, and the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, will also be considered. The focus will be transactional, with attention to the structure of private relationships and the anticipation and avoidance of litigation.

Note: This is a required course for the International Law Concentration (JD).

International Energy Regulation (Nilmini Silva-Send)
LWIC542

3 credit(s)
Requirement: Writing
Concentration(s): Environmental and Energy Law (LLMG), International Law (LLMC), Environmental and Energy Law (JD), LLM in International Law (LLMI)

This 3 credit course on a contemporary global topic will introduce students to international legal principles (sovereignty, territoriality, no harm, compensation for expropriation, liability etc) and relevant treaties, especially the ECT, that govern the interaction between states, agreements/contracts and negotiations between states (public) and multinationals (private), and other legal issues facing the exploration, supply of and investment in energy resources. It will examine the role of major international organizations in the energy sector, such as OPEC, the OECD, the IEA, the UN, the EU as well as the role of NGOs. International energy disputes can be investment disputes most often resolved by arbitration as the preferred mode with ICSID the largest forum of choice. International energy disputes can also be environmental and human rights disputes, litigated in international courts and national courts. While using oil, natural gas and nuclear power as examples for the course, we will look toward the future and evaluate the international legal and policy issues facing the development and expansion of renewable energy, such as biofuels and solar power. This course will be examined by a research paper in place of a final examination. Successful completion of the paper will fulfill the writing requirements of the school of law.

International Finance Techniques (Dan Dillon)
LWIC541

2 credit(s)
Concentration(s): Business and Corporate Law (LLMC), LLM in Business and Corporate Law (LLMB), International Law (JD), Business and Corporate Law (JD), International Law (LLMC), LLM in International Law (LLMI)
Recommended Class(es): Courses in Finance & Taxation

This course covers several of the most common cross-border finance techniques, including IPOs, project finance, venture capital, and securitization, by analyzing real world examples of each to highlight not only the key legal issues involved, but also the practical hurdles faced by an American lawyer working on these types of deals, frequently as part of a multi-national legal, investment banking, and accounting team. The course will also examine the ways American law and legal practice have shaped how these deals are done internationally, and how they influence these types of transactions even when US investors are not involved. A recurrent theme of the course (highlighted by personal anecdotes) will be the challenges of working as an American lawyer on these types of deals in parts of the world with less strenuous legal, regulatory, and taxation regimes, as well as different cultural norms; and balancing the need to be seen by non-American clients and colleagues as “business oriented” while also ensuring that the issues of American law are addressed appropriately and that American professional ethics and cultural norms are not compromised in the process. The course concludes by identifying several areas of opportunity in international finance, and with a discussion of risk management, compliance, and certain ethical issues. At the beginning of the course, students will be assigned to teams, each of which will be provided with a brief case study of one of the finance techniques covered in the course. Each team will make a presentation to the class in the final sessions of the course and later submit a paper covering the key elements of that finance technique and the issues raised by its application in the specified context. In addition, each student’s course grade may be increased (but not decreased) by one grade level (e.g., from B to B+) based upon classroom performance.

International Law in U.S. Courts (Michael D. Ramsey)
LWIC546

3 credit(s)
Requirement: Writing
Concentration(s): International Law (LLMC), International Law (JD), LLM in International Law (LLMI)

This course is intended as a practice-oriented course that would teach students how to litigate issues of international law in U.S. courts. The focus would be both procedural, addressing the ways U.S. domestic law incorporates international law, and interpretive, addressing the ways U.S. courts determine the content of international law. It would focus on both treaties and customary international law. Within the topic of treaties, subjects would include (a) self-execution and non-self-execution; (b) causes of action based on treaties; (c) treaty interpretation; (d) the relationship between treaties and statutes; and (e) non-treaty agreements. For customary international law, subjects would include (a) the formation and identification of customary international law; (b) the direct application of customary international law; (c) statutory incorporation of customary international law through the Alien Tort Statute and otherwise; and (d) using customary international law as an interpretive tool. This course has no prerequisites and assumes no prior knowledge of international law.

International Negotiation (Charles B. Wiggins)
LWIC548

3 credit(s)
Requirement: Skills
Concentration(s): International Law (JD), International Law (LLMC), LLM in International Law (LLMI)

The course will include specific materials and skill-building exercises on cross-cultural aspects of the bargaining process. Participants will include lawyers from other nations who are enrolled in USD's LLMC program, and upper class American JD students. Four-tier Pass/Fail grading.

International Sales (William H. Lawrence)
LWIC555

3 credit(s)
Requirement: Skills
Concentration(s): Business and Corporate Law (LLMC), LLM in Business and Corporate Law (LLMB), International Law (JD), Business and Corporate Law (JD), International Law (LLMC), LLM in International Law (LLMI)

This course focuses on the United Nations Convention on the International Sale of Goods (CISG), with comparisons to domestic law (the UCC in particular). Considerable time is devoted to the application of the CISG to problems that typically arise in international sales transactions. The course does not include an exam. Students instead prepare written memos that reflect the type of assignments they can expect in practice with a law firm.

Interviewing & Counseling (Allen C. Snyder)
LWLP535

3 credit(s)
Requirement: Skills

This course provides advanced training in the skills of client interviewing and counseling. The first part of the course is devoted to learning the specific micro-skills that make up effective interviewing through readings, demonstrations and role-plays. The second- part focuses on the counseling dimension of lawyer-client relationships. In addition to classroom preparation and activities, students will interview actual clients in various locales, including the USD Legal Clinic, the San Diego County Law Library Clinic, and several senior citizen centers. Ethical issues unique to interviewing and counseling are emphasized. Lawyering Skills II or Practicum is highly recommended, but not required. Enrollment is limited; attendance at first class meeting is mandatory. The course is graded on a 4-tier Pass-Fail basis.

Intro to US Law (Michael Devitt)
LWGC530

2 credit(s)

Introduction to United States Law is a required course for Master of Comparative Law students. No other students may enroll. This course comparatively introduces distinctly American approaches to law, lawyering and legal processes. Special emphasis is placed on the common law tradition.
Note: This course is for LLMC students only.

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