Course Descriptions

Spring 2016 Class Descriptions

California Civil Practice Research (Judith Lihosit)
LWGC515

1 credit(s), H/P/L/F Graded
Requirement(s): Skills
Concentration(s): Civil Litigation (JD)

This course will center on an actual case file containing the redacted pleadings and evidentiary materials for a wrongful death suit. Working with this case file, students will develop skills in identifying the key facts and issues, and also in identifying other leads or witnesses they would like to focus on during discovery. Students will gain familiarity with the tools that attorneys use in daily practice (such as commercial practice guides and treatises, forms, court rules, jury instructions, etc.) to further refine the relevant legal issues and identify controlling law; additionally they will develop the research skills necessary to draft common pleadings such as complaints and answers, in addition to motions for summary judgment and other pre-trial motions. Discovery requests (such as interrogatories, requests for admission, depositions), objections to discovery requests, and motions to compel will also be covered. Students will also learn to research commons issues that may arise during trial (such as the handling of witnesses, experts, and evidence) and post-trial issues (settlements, enforcement of judgments, post-trials motions, and appeals). Students will also research and draft an opposition to a motion for summary judgment that their opponent has filed.

California Civil Procedure (Walter Heiser)
LWLP520

3 credit(s), Standard Letter Graded
Concentration(s): Employment and Labor Law (JD), Civil Litigation (JD), Employment and Labor Law (LLMG)

This course is designed for upperclass law students who intend to practice law in California and therefore may wish to learn more about California civil procedure. The course will focus on the important caselaw doctrines, statutory rules, and policies which define civil litigation in the California courts with particular attention to those areas of California civil procedure that are unique when compared to federal and to other states' procedural laws. The topics covered will include considerations before undertaking representation; statutes of limitations and related doctrines; California conflicts of law doctrine; jurisdiction, venue, forum non conveniens, and service of process; prejudgment attachment and other provisional remedies; claim and issue preclusion; pleadings and motions; joinder of parties and claims, new party cross-complaints, equitable indemnity, and good faith settlements; the California Civil Discovery Act; summary judgments, default judgments, involuntary dismissals for failure to prosecute, the “fast track” system, and judicial and contractual arbitration; right to jury trial, trial procedures, and post-trial motions; judgments, enforcement of judgments, and setting aside judgments; and appeals, extraordinary appellate writs, and administrative mandamus. The course will also provide students with a brief summary of the federal or general position on each major topic covered as a basis of comparison and as a review of basic civil procedure. Third year full-time and fourth year part-time students have registration priority for this class.

California Criminal Litigation Skills (Jean Ramirez)
LWCR505

2 credit(s), Standard Letter Graded
Requirement(s): Skills
Concentration(s): Criminal Law (LLMG), Criminal Law (LLMC), Criminal Litigation (JD)
Prerequisite(s): Criminal Law, Legal Writing & Research

If you are considering a career as a prosecutor or criminal defense attorney, or plan to intern at a prosecution or criminal defense agency, this is the course for you. This course focuses on the knowledge and skills required to litigate criminal cases in the California trial courts. The class tracks a criminal case from arrest through sentencing, but not trial, providing students with an overview of the process. Students draft practice-related documents, participate in courtroom simulations, learn fact management and development, and participate in discussions on relevant topics.

Note: Students that have taken Criminal Clinic are not eligible to enroll in this class.

California Torts (Edmund Ursin)
LWLP522

3 credit(s), Standard Letter Graded
Concentration(s): Health Law (JD)
Prerequisite(s): Torts

California Torts focuses on the unique body of doctrines, policies, and jurisprudential perspectives that make up California personal injury law. For the past half century the California Supreme Court has been the most influential state supreme court in the nation. Indeed, six of the seven “most followed” state supreme court decisions rendered since 1966 are tort decision of the California Supreme Court. Roughly speaking, there have been three generations of California tort law—and today’s tort law is an amalgam of the three. Beginning in the 1960s, the avowedly lawmaking court of the “Traynor era,” rewrote much of the fault-based, liability-limiting body of traditional tort doctrine, thereby establishing the doctrine of strict products liability and abolishing or limiting an array of no-duty rules and defenses that had shielded negligent defendants from liability. Beginning in the mid-1980s, however, the court—by then dominated by Republican appointees, but remaining a policy oriented lawmaking court—has created a third generation of decisions which have “refined,” or limited, the doctrines put in place by its liberal predecessor. First year torts courses inevitably obscure the unique character of California tort law—taken as a body of connected doctrines, policies, and jurisprudential perspectives. The forest, so to speak, is not seen and even “California trees” are often not in clear focus. The goal of this course is to enable students to understand the forest, see clearly—and understand—the individual trees, and to be able to anticipate new growths. This course will also serve as a review of material that will be tested on Bar examinations. Student who have taken the Enterprise, Products, and No-Fault Liability course are ineligible to take this course.

Child Advocacy Clinic: Delinquency I (Robert C. Fellmeth)
LWVL503

4 credit(s), H/P/L/F Graded
Requirement(s): Skills
Concentration(s): Children's Rights (JD)
Prerequisite(s): See course description

Students work with assigned attorneys from the San Diego Office of the Public Defender, representing juveniles in delinquency court proceedings. Students are exposed to a wide variety of experiences, such as interviewing their minor clients; preparing briefs and motions; participating in hearings and conferences; coordinating with probation officers, investigators, etc.; and making court appearances as necessary and appropriate. Delinquency Clinic students must commit 20 hours per week to their Clinic work, and there is an additional one-hour classroom component each week. Students must have completed or be enrolled in Evidence, Civil Procedure and Child Rights and Remedies. Clinic slots are limited; students must obtain a permission slip from Professor Robert Fellmeth or Elisa Weichel before registering for the course.

Note: This clinic may be applied as the required clinic for the Children's Rights Concentration (JD).
Additional Information:Children's Rights JD Concentration

Child Advocacy Clinic: Dependency I & II (Robert C. Fellmeth)
LWVL507

4 credit(s), H/P/L/F Graded
Requirement(s): Skills
Concentration(s): Children's Rights (JD)
Prerequisite(s): See course description

Students work with assigned attorneys from the Dependency Legal Group of San Diego, representing abused and neglected children in dependency court proceedings. Students are exposed to a wide variety of experiences, such as interviewing child clients; presenting evidence during bench trials; preparing briefs and memoranda; participating in settlement conferences; conducting field work with investigators; and making court appearances as necessary and appropriate. Dependency Clinic students must commit 16 hours per week to their Clinic work, and there is an additional one-hour classroom component each week. Students must have completed or be enrolled in Evidence, Civil Procedure and Child Rights and Remedies. Clinic slots are limited; students must obtain a permission slip from Professor Robert Fellmeth or Elisa Weichel before registering for the course.

Note: This clinic may be applied as the required clinic for the Children's Rights Concentration (JD).
Additional Information:Children's Rights JD Concentration

Child Advocacy Clinic: Policy I & II (Robert C. Fellmeth)
LWVL505

1-3 credit(s), H/P/L/F Graded
Requirement(s): Skills
Concentration(s): Children's Rights (JD)
Prerequisite(s): Child Rights & Remedies

Students work with CAI professional staff on legislative and regulatory policy advocacy projects, impact litigation, public education projects, and/or policy research and analysis of current applications of law and regulations as they affect children. Policy Clinic students are also able to serve as Educational Representatives for at-risk youth and/or assist CAI’s Homeless Youth Outreach Project. Students must have completed or be enrolled in Child Rights and Remedies. Clinic slots are limited; students must obtain a permission slip from Professor Robert Fellmeth or Elisa Weichel before registering for the course.

Note: This clinic may be applied as the required clinic for the Children's Rights Concentration (JD).
Additional Information:Children's Rights JD Concentration

Civil Clinic I (Allen Gruber)
LWVL510

1-4 credit(s), H/P/L/F Graded
Requirement(s): Skills
Concentration(s): Civil Litigation (JD)
Prerequisite(s): Civil Procedure, Evidence
Recommended Class(es): Trial Advocacy or Practicum

Students interview, counsel and represent clients at Superior Court or in administrative hearings in a wide variety of cases under the supervision of an attorney. Students draft pleadings and correspondence, as well as confer and negotiate with opposing counsel/parties. Weekly group meetings are combined with individual case conferences to provide intensive personal training in litigation techniques, problem solving and case management. Students also learn general civil litigation practice and procedures. Prerequisites: Civil Procedure, Evidence Recommended: Practicum or Trial Advocacy. The clinic is graded on a 4-tier Pass-Fail basis.

Students must attend a mandatory orientation on Friday, January 15, 2016 at 11:00 a.m. in WH 3B.

Note: There are limitations on JD concentration eligibility. Please check the Civil Litigation Concentration web page for more information.
Additional Information:Civil Litigation Concentration

Civil Clinic II (Allen Gruber)
LWVL511

1-4 credit(s), H/P/L/F Graded
Requirement(s): Skills
Concentration(s): Civil Litigation (JD)
Prerequisite(s): Civil Procedure, Evidence
Recommended Class(es): Trial Advocacy or Practicum

Clinic II interns refine their skills, working on complex cases and cases already begun as Clinic I interns. Students may mentor first time clinic participants, serve as lead attorney on cases, and have additional opportunities to appear in court or administrative proceedings. Supervising attorneys/adjunct professors provide individualized coaching, based on the Clinic II interns’ needs and interests. Prerequisite: Successful completion of Clinic I in the same clinic.

Note: There are limitations on JD concentration eligibility. Please check the Civil Litigation Concentration web page for more information.
Additional Information:Civil Litigation Concentration

Civil Rights Law & History (Gail Heriot)
LWPP519

3 credit(s), Standard Letter Graded

This course will explore the legal history of civil rights from the 19th century to the present and will also cover civil rights issues that confront federal and state policymakers today, including human trafficking, hate crimes and same-sex marriage. Among the questions that will be explored will be, “What are ‘civil rights’ and how has the meaning of that term changed over time?” The Reconstruction amendments to the Constitution will be discussed with special emphasis on the Thirteenth Amendment, given that its sesquicentennial is coming up in 2015. Legislation like the New York Married Women’s Property Act of 1848, the Mississippi Black Code, the Reconstruction civil rights acts, the Civil Rights Act of 1957, the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the Americans with Disabilities Act as well as failed efforts like the proposed Equal Rights Amendment will also be explored. Some non-legal historical reading will also be included. This course is aimed at enhancing student understanding of how foundational concepts such as "civil rights" endure and as well as evolve over time and are translated into constitutional and statutory texts, legal institutions and public policy. This course is open only to students enrolled in the Washington, D.C. Externship Program. This class begins on January 27, 2016 and ends on April 20, 2016.  The final exam will be held on April 25, 2016.

Community Property (Dennis Lilly)
LWTE544

3 credit(s), Standard Letter Graded

In this course the non-tax aspects of estate planning are integrated, combining wills, trusts, future interests, and community property. Methods of family wealth transfer in both community property and non-community property jurisdictions are considered, including: inter vivos gifts, wills, trusts, intestate succession and will substitutes. Fiduciary administration; class gifts; powers of appointment; the rule against perpetuities; charitable trusts; classification, control and management of community property; and the distribution of property on dissolution of the community are studied.

Comparative Con Law (Laurence Claus)
LWIC515

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

This course considers how sophisticated political systems limit and channel the exercise of governmental power. We do this primarily by taking the great issues of American constitutional law and asking how those issues are treated elsewhere. The course is open to all upper-class students, and may be taken concurrent with Constitutional Law. A research paper is required.

Complex Litigation (Alan Schulman)
LWLP523

3 credit(s), Standard Letter Graded
Requirement(s): Skills
Concentration(s): Employment and Labor Law (JD), Civil Litigation (JD), Employment and Labor Law (LLMG)
Prerequisite(s): Civil Procedure

This course offers in-depth instruction in how class actions and other aggregate party lawsuits are litigated in federal courts, taught by a trial lawyer with more than 30 years experience litigating class actions. The course covers the case law and practice skills involved in litigating cases under Rule 23, with special focus on several important substantive areas of class action practice – consumer, securities fraud, employment discrimination, and mass tort. 

Constitutional Law I (Staff)
LWAA515

4 credit(s), Standard Letter Graded

This course provides an introduction to the United States Constitution, stressing the theory and practice of judicial interpretation and review, the separation of federal powers, the relation of the states to the federal government, and specific powers of the federal government. It also provides an introduction to the Bill of Rights and its limitations on the exercise of governmental power, with emphasis on freedom of speech.

Constitutional Law II (Lawrence A. Alexander, Miranda Oshige McGowan)
LWPP525

3 credit(s), Standard Letter Graded
Prerequisite(s): Constitutional Law I

This courses covers the Fourteenth Amendment's equal protection and due process clauses. Specific topics include race discrimination (including school desegregation and affirmative action), gender discrimination, discrimination against gays and lesbians, voting rights, privacy (including abortion, sexual freedom, and the right to die), and property. A final exam is required. 

Contracts (Staff)
LWAA520

4 credit(s), Standard Letter Graded
Concentration(s): Business and Corporate Law (MSLS), Business and Corporate Law (LLMC)

An introduction to legal reasoning and analytical skills through an investigation of how the law enforces agreements. Included are such topics as: the requirements for the formation of a contract; problems of interpretation; damages for breach; the statute of frauds; illegality; and problems which arise during the performance stage of a contract, such as the creation and failure of express and implied conditions, excuse through impossibility or frustration of purpose, and discharge. Article II of the Uniform Commercial Code is introduced and compared with the common law of contracts.

Controlled Substances (Donald A. Dripps)
LWGC518

3 credit(s), Standard Letter Graded
Concentration(s): Criminal Law (LLMG), Criminal Law (LLMC), Criminal Litigation (JD), Criminal Law (MSLS)

This course examines the criminal law’s treatment of recreational drug use and the policy controversies attending the law. The course should be of special interest to students interested in taking up criminal practice, whether as prosecutors or defenders, but should also appeal to students interested in our criminal justice system generally. Specific topics covered will include the Nature of Intoxicants, the Development of Legal Prohibitions, and Continuing Debate over Legalization; The War on Drugs, Mass Incarceration, and Questions of Equal Justice; Possession versus Distribution; Manufacture and Conspiracy Offenses; Mens Rea in Drug Crimes; Drug Testing at Work and School; Sentencing under the Guidelines; Criminal Procedure--Informants and Wiretaps; Criminal Procedure—Search and Seizure, with special emphasis on suppression hearing practice; The Controlled Substances Act and the FDCA; Medical Marijuana; and International Aspects of Drug Control.

Copyright Law (Abraham Bell)
LWIP525

3 credit(s), Standard Letter Graded
Concentration(s): Intellectual Property Law (MSLS), Intellectual Property Law (LLMG), Intellectual Property (LLMC), Intellectual Property (JD)

This course surveys the law relating to rights in expressive works. We will study what copyright covers – such as books, movies, musical recordings, and software – and distinguish copyright from other forms of intellectual property, such as trademark and patent. We will focus on the exclusive rights granted in copyrightable works, rules governing the transfer of those rights, what acts infringe those rights, what remedies the law provides for infringement, and what limitations the law places on those rights, such as the fair use doctrine. We will discuss some topics of current interest, such as the rules governing the copying and distribution of music over peer-to-peer networks, digital rights management, and open-source software development.

Note: May be applied as part of the six required credits for the Intellectual Property Concentration (JD).
Additional Information:Intellectual Property JD Concentration

Corporate Counsel Externship (formerly called Corporate Counsel Internship) (Beth Baier)
LWVL591

1-3 credit(s), P/F Graded
Requirement(s): Skills
Concentration(s): Intellectual Property Law (LLMG), Environmental and Energy Law (LLMG), Employment and Labor Law (LLMG), Intellectual Property (LLMC), Environmental and Energy Law (LLMC), Business and Corporate Law (LLMC), LLM in Business and Corporate Law (LLMB), Intellectual Property (JD), Health Law (JD), Employment and Labor Law (JD), Business and Corporate Law (JD)

The Corporate Counsel Externship Program consists of a work component and a class component and allows students to earn academic credit working in the legal department of a corporation, company or other business entity. Students may also work in other departments of a corporation as long as they are supervised by an on-site licensed attorney.

Students work a minimum of 60 hours per unit of credit and may receive 1-3 credits. Academic requirements include: mandatory orientation, journals between student and professor relating to the field placement; a three-five page reflective paper at the end of the semester; an example of work product for professor review; and, satisfactory completion of work experience. The Externship is graded on a Pass-Fail basis.

If you have been offered and have accepted a field placement, meet the eligibility requirements, agree to meet the course obligations and want to register for the Externship course, fill out the Field Placement Form. The Office of Career and Professional Development will then confirm your placement and instruct you on registering for the course.

Contact lawcareers@sandiego.edu with placement questions. Contact Professor Margaret Dalton, Faculty Director, at mdalton@sandiego.edu with academic questions.

Note: There are limitations on JD concentration eligibility. Please check the JD concentrations web pages for more information. Contact Law Student Affairs to find out if your work in this internship qualifies for a concentration.
Additional Information:JD Concentrations Web Page, Email Law Student Affairs

Corporate Innovation and Legal Policy (Orly Lobel)
LWIP528

3 credit(s), Standard Letter Graded
Requirement(s): Writing
Concentration(s): Intellectual Property Law (LLMG), Employment and Labor Law (LLMG), Intellectual Property (LLMC), Business and Corporate Law (LLMC), LLM in Business and Corporate Law (LLMB), Intellectual Property (JD), Employment and Labor Law (JD), Business and Corporate Law (JD)

What are the optimal policy ingredients and business strategies for managing innovation? How can business leaders, inventors, lawyers, and policymakers benefit from the connections between corporate success, intellectual property, and human capital? The course will introduce foundations of intellectual property law and employment and organizational practices. We will examine corporate policies and disputes over the control of ideas, secrets, skill and intellectual property. In particular, we will analyze non-compete contracts, trade secrets and non-disclosures, information privacy, economic espionage, employee duties of loyalty, including prohibitions on customer and co-worker solicitation and raiding for competitive endeavors; and employer ownership over inventions and artistic work, including pre-invention patent assignment agreements and work-for-hire disputes. In the past few years, the black box of innovation has been pierced with a plethora of new interdisciplinary research and practice. At the same time, industry and policymakers in the United States, like other countries around the world, are debating the benefits of existing EIP laws. In the course, we will bring together these various developments to identify how companies can sustain their innovative capacities, commercialize science, and manage creativity, and to assess how differences in regulatory and contractual arrangements in the employment relationship can impact key aspects of innovation, such as the rate of patent filings, the level of network participation in intellectual and creative endeavors, individual motivation to innovate, organizational behavior, and talent mobility.

Note: This course may be applied as part of the nine required credits for the Employment and Labor Law Concentration (JD).
Additional Information:Employment and Labor Law Concentration

Corporate Reorganization (M. Carr Ferguson)
LWTE510

3 credit(s), Standard Letter Graded
Concentration(s): Taxation (MSLS), Business and Corporate Law (MSLS), LLM in Taxation (LLMT), Taxation (LLMC), Business and Corporate Law (LLMC), LLM in Business and Corporate Law (LLMB), Business and Corporate Law (JD)
Prerequisite(s): Tax I, Corporations, Corporate Tax

This course considers the tax treatment of corporations and shareholders in corporate acquisitive reorganizations, single corporation reorganizations and corporate divisions, including carryovers. Prerequisites: Tax I, Corporate Tax and Corporations.  

Students who completed the three credit Tax I course must obtain professor approval using the form at www.sandiego.edu/law/registrar/forms.php.

Corporate Tax (Victor Fleischer)
LWTE560

3 credit(s), Standard Letter Graded
Concentration(s): Taxation (MSLS), Business and Corporate Law (MSLS), LLM in Taxation (LLMT), Taxation (LLMC), Business and Corporate Law (LLMC), LLM in Business and Corporate Law (LLMB), Business and Corporate Law (JD)
Prerequisite(s): Tax I

The course involves a study of the basic concepts of federal income taxation of C corporations and their shareholders, including organization of corporations; cash and stock dividends; redemptions of stock; partial and complete liquidations; sales of corporate businesses and reorganizations. Taxation of corporations is compared with taxation of partnerships, limited liability companies and S corporations. The emphasis is on careful analysis of Code provisions, Treasury Regulations, other administrative materials and important judicial decisions in relation to problems that are frequently assigned in advance of class discussion. Your grade will be based on a 8 hour take-home final examination.

Note: This is a required course for the Business and Corporate Law Concentration (JD).

Corporations (Lynne L. Dallas)
LWBC545

4 credit(s), Standard Letter Graded
Concentration(s): Business and Corporate Law (MSLS), Business and Corporate Law (LLMC), LLM in Business and Corporate Law (LLMB), Employment and Labor Law (JD), Business and Corporate Law (JD)

This course examines the structure and the rights and obligations of directors, officers, and shareholders mainly under state corporations law. Other topics include partnerships and limited liability entities. The course covers, among other subjects, the characteristics of the corporation as distinct from other forms of business association, the special problems of the closely-held corporations (a corporation owned by a few persons), the fiduciary obligations of directors and controlling shareholders in closely-held and public corporations, procedures for decision making by directors and shareholders, shareholder voting rights, and certain federal securities law subjects, such as insider trading.

Note: This is a required course for the Business and Corporate Law Concentration (JD) and the LLM in Business & Corporate Law.

Criminal Procedure I (Kevin Cole)
LWCR520

3 credit(s), Standard Letter Graded
Concentration(s): Criminal Law (MSLS), Criminal Law (LLMG), Criminal Law (LLMC), Criminal Litigation (JD)

This course explores constitutional limitations upon the investigation of crime under the fourth, fifth, sixth and fourteenth amendments. Its focus is on the law governing searches, seizures, and police interrogation. Topics include the nature of a fourth amendment search; arrest and investigative detention; warrants and exceptions to the warrant requirement; confessions; and the application of the exclusionary rules.

Students are required to purchase an i>Clicker. The clicker responses are not part of the student’s grade, but the clickers will be used to give feedback and to ensure compliance with the attendance policy. The bookstore sells new and used i>Clickers and will repurchase clickers in good condition at the end of the semester. You may also purchase them from other sites. Every version, including the early, “text only” model, will suffice.

Note: This is a required course for the Criminal Litigation Concentration (JD).

Criminal Procedure II (Knut S. Johnson)
LWCR525

3 credit(s), Standard Letter Graded
Concentration(s): Criminal Law (MSLS), Criminal Law (LLMG), Criminal Law (LLMC), Criminal Litigation (JD)
Prerequisite(s): Criminal Procedure I

In this advanced criminal procedure class, students will continue the study commenced in Criminal Procedure I, focusing on the processing of a criminal defendant through the criminal justice system. The course will address a number of issues regularly presented in criminal cases, including the charging process, the right to a speedy trial, criminal discovery and disclosure, the right to jury trial, the right to effective assistance of counsel, the right to confrontation and the exercise of the privilege against self incrimination at trial. In addition the course will include discussions of the principles of the right against double jeopardy, and post conviction remedies such as direct appeal and petitions for habeas corpus. The purpose of the course is to develop an understanding of the basic structure of the criminal process in a federal system of government as well as the basic principles underlying the constitutional and procedural protections of the criminal justice system.


Note: This is a required course for the Criminal Litigation Concentration (JD).

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