LAW 431 Accounting for Lawyers 2 hrs
This graded course will provide students with an understanding of basic accounting principles and their practical applications to the practice of law. This course is designed to be accessible to everyone and will focus on the mechanics of accounting, the analysis of financial statements, the role of Certified Public Accountants and Auditors, and emerging issues for the accounting field. The purpose of this course is to help students learn to spot financial related problems for their clients and understand basic accounting principles. Performance will be evaluated based on class participation, completion of assignments, and a final exam. Open to 2L and 3L students. This course satisfies 2 credits of the Experiential Learning requirement.
LAW 406 Administrative Law 3 hrs
This course will examine the largest branch of government administrative agencies. It will discuss agencies' legal authority to act and the limitations on that authority, including constitutional and statutory constraints. It will also examine administrative procedure. Students will learn administrative law through a practice orientated approach that will require them to apply their knowledge throughout the semester to various hypothetical fact scenarios.
LAW 1019 Admiralty Law-Distance Format 3 hrs
This course is an introductory survey in US Maritime law, often referred to as Admiralty law. Early classwork will focus on the ongoing development of admiralty jurisdiction, with the focus then shifting to the unique procedural rules and remedies that are peculiar to admiralty practice. Students will then be exposed to the litany of common law and statutory law causes of action that apply to the various activities that fall within the purview of admiralty jurisdiction, including the carriage of goods and passengers; the employment of maritime personnel, including longshoremen and seamen; the chartering, mortgaging and insuring of vessels; personal injury claims brought by maritime personnel; and the navigation of ships. Students completing this course in Admiralty Law should, by the end of the instruction, understand the contours of admiralty jurisdiction and the various tests applied by the courts in determining whether a dispute is cognizable in admiralty; learn the unique rules and remedies available to the admiralty practitioner; gain an understanding of the lingo of the shipping industry, especially as it applies to the parties to the fundamental shipping transactions; appreciate the difference between the various categories of maritime employees; and arrive at a working knowledge of the documents that are generated in the business of international shipment of cargo.
This is a three-credit-hour course that will be graded numerically. There are no prerequisites. There is no enrollment limit for the course.
LAW 643 Advanced Legal Research 2 hrs
The purpose of the course is to develop research skills in both print and electronic legal research resources. Through exercises and projects, which may include class presentations, students have the opportunity to select, use, and evaluate a wide range of legal and law-related resources. The course covers state and federal judicial, legislative and administrative materials as well as the use of finding tools, legal commentary, forms and trial preparation resources. Research strategies and efficient and cost-effective use of online legal research sources, including free and low-cost resources as well as Lexis, Westlaw and other subscription online services, are emphasized. Enrollment limited to 15. Offered during Fall and Spring Semesters. Open to 3Ls only during Fall Semester; open to 2Ls only during Spring Semester. This course satisfies 2 credits of the Experiential Learning requirement. This course is also a requirement of the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program.
LAW 534 Advanced Litigation Drafting 2 hrs
This course will explore technical and strategic issues in the drafting of litigation documents such as briefs, complaints, answers, written discovery, affidavits, discovery schedules, pretrial orders, jury charges, releases and correspondence. The course will discuss the use and misuse of form books, and the viability of the “plain English” movement. The course will review some basic rhetorical strategies for maximizing the effect of favorable law and facts, or for minimizing the import of adverse law and facts. The course will examine good legal writing from the perspective of the Bench, and the Bar. In the context of litigation drafting, the course will offer students practical instruction about a litigation practice in general. The course will provide students with form litigation documents for their future use. Enrollment limited to 24. This course will satisfy either the Advanced Writing requirement, or 2 credits of the Experiential Learning requirement. This course will also satisfy the drafting requirement of the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program.
LAW 666 Advanced Persuasive Writing 2 hrs
The course is open to all seniors. It will satisfy the advanced drafting requirement of the Legal Writing Certificate Program. Enrollment for this course is limited to 15 students.
LAW 1016 Advanced Trial Advocacy 2 hrs
The course focuses on advanced instruction on the planning, preparation and execution of a case at trial by instruction on the significant components of a trial and preparation and use of a Trial Notebook. A course problem allows students to construct and execute a case theory by creating Witness Lists, Exhibits Lists, Opening Statements, Direct and Cross Examinations, Closing Arguments, as well as other components of a trial and Trial Notebook. Students will be asked to participate in demonstrations of major components of a trial. Enrollment Limit 30. 3L’s only. This course satisfies 2 credits of the Experiential Learning requirement. (Formerly titled Pre-Trial Advocacy--Law 563)
LAW 661 Advanced Writing Group 1 hr
Sections of this course consist of approximately 5 students and meet one hour a week. Most weeks the group will respond to a piece of writing, sometimes a piece written by a group member and sometimes a piece written by a lawyer or other author. The group will read examples of good writing; read and edit examples of weak writing; work on selected topics of grammar and style; and study advanced writing techniques. The course is graded and carries one credit per semester. Enrollment is limited to students enrolled in the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program.
LAW 150 American Constitutional System 4 hrs
This course focuses on significant cases interpreting the Constitution of the United States. The course examines the way in which the Constitution has been interpreted to distribute the power of decisionmaking in our governmental system among the branches of our federal government, the state governments, and individuals.
LAW 403 Antitrust Law 3 hrs
Federal antitrust laws, and parallel state laws, were passed to provide a “comprehensive charter of economic liberty aimed at preserving free and unfettered competition.” Three main federal antitrust laws, the Sherman, Clayton, and FTC Acts passed in 1890 and 1914, amended by the Robinson-Patman Act in 1936, have renewed significance today in many economic sectors. Those areas include healthcare and pharma, online searching, social media, sports, communications, phones, air transportation, computer operating systems, real estate appraisal, telemarketing, false advertising, timeshares – that is, throughout the economy, in big business and business niches too. The laws outlaw monopolistic practices through raw market power, conspiracies, agreements among competitors, “vertical” restraints, tying arrangements, predatory pricing, and more. The laws can be enforced by governmental agencies as well as aggrieved individuals and businesses. Sophisticated business lawyers are expected to appreciate antitrust laws, whether defensively or offensively.
LAW 457 Appellate Practice & Procedure 2 hrs
This course will cover topics of appellate procedure, including standards of review, timeliness, ripeness, harmless error, writs, preservation of error, preparation of the record, and court rules. Using a simulated Georgia record, students will draft the procedural documents relevant to an appeal, such as a Notice of Appeal, a Designation of Record, a Request for Oral Argument, an Enumeration of Errors, opening, responsive and reply briefs. Students will make at least one oral argument. The course will be graded. Enrollment limit of 16. This course may satisfy either the Advanced Writing Requirement, or 2 credits of the Experiential Learning requirement.
LAW 1022 Asylum & Human Rights Clinic 4 hrs
This clinic will represent clients regarding asylum, refugee, or other claims based on international human rights treaties and the U.S. Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). Students will learn the basic law of asylum, refugees, Convention Against Torture (CAT), and other relevant human rights law and immigration procedure in class discussion, readings, and while representing clients. Most students will represent clients on appeal before the BIA. The Clinic occasionally may also accept federal petitions for review, amici curiae briefs, or cases before asylum officers, and it may conduct “know your rights” events or workshops.
Students will learn advanced legal writing techniques, including appellate strategies, persuasive storytelling, the use of expert reports, and effective argument within complex legal frameworks. Under the close supervision of the professor(s), clinic students will work in teams to complete the tasks necessary to zealously represent their clients, including intensely reviewing transcripts of hearings before an immigration judge, interviewing the client (sometimes using interpreters), unearthing new facts about the client's case, researching domestic and international law and country conditions, developing a theory of the appeal, filing administrative motions and petitions, and drafting an appellate brief, affidavits, and motions. In doing so, students will develop a deep understanding of the complex law governing immigration, humanitarian relief in removal proceedings and asylum, as well as collaboration, cultural competency, and self-evaluation. Students will also acquire practical skills, including advanced persuasive writing techniques and cross-cultural client communication.
At the outset of the course, students may elect for the course to meet the advanced writing requirement or to count towards the experiential learning requirement. It also satisfies the drafting course requirement for students pursuing the Certificate in Advanced Legal Writing, Research, and Drafting. The course is numerically graded.
Enrollment limit: 8. Enrollment is by application and permission of the professor(s).
LAW 440 Bankruptcy 3 hrs
This course is an overview of debtor-creditor relations. While issues under state law will be considered, the overwhelming emphasis of the course will be on federal bankruptcy law. The rights and obligations of both debtors and creditors under bankruptcy law will be examined, with particular focus on the strategic decision-making process of parties involved in a bankruptcy proceeding. (Previously Debtor/Creditor)
LAW 1440 DL Bankruptcy 3 hrs
This course studies the federal bankruptcy system as applied to individuals, families, small businesses, and large corporations (e.g., “chapter 11”). It explores the relationships between these debtors and various types of creditors, judges, lawyers, and other professionals. The course is basically divided into a consumer bankruptcy section and a business bankruptcy section.
LAW 673 Bar Preparation Course 2 hrs
The course will build on what students have learned about multistate bar subjects and test taking throughout law school. The focus will be on knowledge, skills, and attitudes that have been shown to be helpful in passing the multistate multiple choice exam (MBE) and essay exam. Included will be practice in writing bar essay exams using some of the six multistate topics, insights into how bar exam essays are graded, and practice on MBE type exams. The course is intended to supplement and not replace the commercial review courses. The course will be a one-unit course that is graded pass/fail, has no prerequisites, and has no enrollment limit. 3Ls only.
LAW 673 Bar Preparation Course 3 hrs
The course will build on what students have learned about the seven Multi-State Bar Exam (MBE) subjects, essay writing, and multiple-choice test taking throughout law school. It focuses only on those subjects and not on the state-specific portions of the Bar. The course will consist of a combination of substantive review from full-time doctrinal faculty and testing techniques for the multiple-choice portion of the Bar Exam (MBE), essay exam, and Multi-State Performance Test (MPT). Included will be practice and substantive review of MBE questions, as well as practice and insights into how Bar Exam essays should be written and will be graded. The course is intended to supplement and not replace the commercial review courses. The course will be a three-credit course that is graded pass/fail, is available only to third-year law students, has no prerequisites, and has no enrollment limit. 3L's only.
LAW 412 Business Associations 3 hrs
This course focuses on the law of agency, general partnerships and corporations with some attention to limited partnerships and limited liability companies. Coverage includes the choice of business form and the formation, management and dissolution of each of the principal business forms. Also introduced is federal securities law as it pertains to shareholder suffrage, proxy contests, hostile takeovers and secondary securities transactions.
LAW 659 Business Drafting 2 hrs
This course will explore issues surrounding the drafting of business-related documents. During the course students will draft a number of different documents including corporate formation documents, documents used in the sale of a business, employment agreements, deeds, loan documents and general business contracts. The course will explore the use and misuse of form books, the importance of language in this type of drafting, the role of the business attorney, and the viability of the "plain English" movement. The course will offer students practical instruction about various areas of a general business practice. Business Associations is a co-requisite or pre-requisite. Enrollment limited to 24. This course will satisfy either the Advanced Writing requirement, or 2 credits of the Experiential Learning requirement. This course also satisfies the drafting requirement of the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program.
LAW 632 Case Settlement Negotiation 2 hrs
Students will evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of their hypothetical clients' cases and attempt to negotiate a favorable settlement with the opposing party. May not be taken simultaneously with Negotiations. Enrollment limited to 16. This course satisfies 2 credits of the Experiential Learning requirement.
LAW 203 Civil Lawsuits 3 hrs
This course covers the process of civil litigation, from the filing a lawsuit, to entry of final judgment, through appeal. It covers the rules regulating pre-pleading investigation, pleadings, discovery, pretrial motions including those under Rule 12 and dispositive motions, trial, post-trial motions, and appeals. In addition, the course introduces alternatives to litigation, including arbitration, mediation, and settlement. The course includes examination of litigation documents, including pleadings, motions, and discovery materials.
LAW 611 Civil Rights Law 3 hrs
This is a three credit hour course to introduce the fundamentals of civil rights litigation. It will focus primarily litigating constitutional and statutory claims against public officials and local governments under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, but it also considers actions against federal officials that are authorized by Bivens v. Six Unknown Agents of Fed. Bureau of Narcotics, 403 U.S. 388 (1971). Students will learn about absolute and qualified immunities; government liability for the acts of individual officials; damages; and the intersection of federal and state law. American Constitutional System is a pre-requisite or a co-requisite. Open to 2L and 3L students.
LAW 415 Client Counseling Competition 1 hr
During the Spring Semester, Mercer Law students compete for the honor of representing the school in the National Client Counseling Competition sponsored by the American Bar Association. The students selected are given intensive training by one of our faculty members using the school's video systems for observation and evaluation of counseling techniques. The team competes against other law schools regionally for the opportunity to compete for the national championship.
LAW 3002 Client Counseling II 2 hrs
In the mandatory Introduction to Client Counseling course, second year students learn the most basic counseling skills: active listening, initial client interview techniques, and helping a client make a decision. In Client Counseling II, students will learn more advanced client counseling skills and techniques. Using a similar model to the Introductory course (lecture, small group discussion, and simulated client interactions), students will learn and practice more advanced (yet still inevitable) counseling circumstances: bringing a client bad news; counseling clients in complex litigation; engaging the client who becomes frustrated or disappointed during the course of the representation; and similar topics. This course will also delve deeper into ethical considerations in client counseling, including discussions of privilege, confidentiality, and perjury. Prerequisite: Intro to Client Counseling. Pass/Fail Enrollment limited to 20 students. This course satisfies 2 credits of the Experiential Learning requirement.
LAW 422 Conflict of Laws 2 hrs
The principal focus of the course is "choice of law" -- the methods used by courts in the United States to decide the applicable law in cases that, in their parties or events, involve more than one state or country. The course also briefly examines the respect owed a judgment of a court of another state or country. The course meets for two hours each week, and students ordinarily earn 2 credit hours for completing it. However, a student may earn a third credit hour if, in addition to fulfilling the usual course requirements (including an end-of-semester exam), the student writes a research paper on an approved topic. Anyone who wishes to write such a paper should register for both Conflict of Laws and one credit hour of Independent Research and Writing with the professor.
LAW 568 Consumer Bankruptcy Practice 2 hrs
Students will be presented with hypothetical fact situations. Students will write short papers in which they will explain, based on the facts presented, what advice they would give to a client, what additional information they require to provide proper advice, what they need to do to satisfy their professional and statutory duties as attorneys, and other such issues. Students also will prepare and file various documents as attorneys for debtors (e.g., initial petition, schedules, a statement of financial affairs and a plan) and as attorneys for creditors (e.g., an objection to confirmation, a motion for relief from the stay). Time permitting, hearings may be scheduled in the law school courtroom, or possibly in the courtroom of a local bankruptcy judge, where students will appear and present their arguments. Classroom work would include presentation of material related to the papers and documents prior to their preparation and then follow-up discussion and critique of the students’ work after submission. Bankruptcy is a prerequisite. Enrollment limited to 16. This course satisfies 2 credits of the Experiential Learning requirement.
LAW 519 Contract Drafting 2 hrs
The purpose of the course is to present students with a real-world approach to drafting contracts. Students will develop an understanding of the fundamental working parts of a contract and how the basic principles of contract law are memorialized in various types of agreements. The course will provide an overview of the issues and processes involved in drafting contracts and transactional instruments. It will enable students to analyze the basic structure of contracts and other deal documents and to develop techniques used to efficiently create instruments with precision and clarity. Students will explore principles for understanding the common structures of transactional documents and their provisions, including their applicability to specific transactions. Contracts drafting will combine lectures with drafting exercises and two to four graded drafting assignments. The course will introduce the students to foundational concepts, including representations and warranties, covenants, rights, conditions, discretionary authority and declarations. Students will be exposed to how and why a drafter chooses a specific contract concept in terms of translating the business deal into the four corners of the agreement. The course will address the framework of an agreement and its various provisions, from the recitals to the signature lines, in each instance examining the business, legal and drafting issues that may arise. Students will learn approaches to good drafting and techniques to enhance clarity and avoid ambiguity in the context of the business deal. Students will also learn how to look at a deal from the client’s perspective and how to add value to a transaction by identifying business issues. In addition, the course will address ethical issues unique to contract drafting. Numerically graded. Limit 24 students. This course will satisfy either the Advanced Writing Requirement, or 2 credits of the Experiential Learning requirement. This course will also satisfy the drafting requirement for the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program.
LAW 107 Contracts 3 hrs
This course addresses the basic principles and significance of making, interpreting and enforcing contracts and gives attention to related theories of obligation, such as promissory estoppel and quasi-contract.
LAW 108 Contracts II 3 hrs
This course follows Contracts I and addresses principles of express and implied warranties, damages, conditions, good faith, sales, performance and related issues under the common law and Uniform Commercial Code.
LAW 4005 Corporate Governance Trends 1 hr
This course will provide students with practical instruction on corporate governance issues facing companies today, with a focus on the most prevalent environmental, social and governance (ESG) proposals being made by shareholders. Students will review relevant state corporation laws, including Delaware and Georgia, the ABA's Model Business Corporation Act and key provisions of the federal securities laws as well as recent, real-world examples of shareholders using these laws to force for-profit companies to become more socially responsible. The class will meet for 13 class hours during one week of the regular semester, typically scheduled on a Friday and Saturday. Readings and materials will be assigned before and/or after the class meetings (scheduled according to the instructor's preference).
Elective. Evaluated on the basis of a final project or exam, graded S/U. Open to 2L and 3L students. Business Associations is a pre or co-requisite.
LAW 521 Corporate Issues Seminar 2 hrs
The seminar focuses on the theoretical and practical nature of the corporate entity (with occasional attention to other business forms), its historical development, sociological and political influence, and social responsibility. In spring 2019, the seminar will focus on selected cases of corporate wrongdoing, such as the massive accounting and securities fraud perpetrated by Enron. This will require some attention to federal securities law. Students will write and present a research paper on a related topic of their own choosing. (Note: This material is not just for those contemplating a career in transactional law. It is also pertinent for future litigators. A very high percentage of cases filed in Georgia’s courts involve a corporate or business party.) Pre-requisite: Business Associations. Enrollment limited to 15. Graded. This course will satisfy the Advanced Writing requirement, and will also satisfy the Seminar requirement of the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program.
LAW 424 Corporate Tax 3 hrs
An in-depth analysis of Internal Revenue code sections dealing with income taxation of corporations and their shareholders. Particular emphasis is given to such areas as transfers to controlled corporations, dividends, redemptions, liquidations, and Subchapter S corporations. Income Tax is a pre-requisite.
LAW 110 Criminal Law 3 hrs
This first-semester course examines major criminal law concepts, including intent, criminal act, and justification and excuse for crimes, as well as exploring the historical and philosophical underpinnings of the criminal justice system.
LAW 671 Criminal Procedure--Constitutional Dimensions 3 hrs
This course focuses on the constitutional provisions that govern the conduct of criminal investigations, particularly the Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, and Fourteenth Amendments. The principal topics include the law of search and seizure, the law of interrogation, and the exclusionary rule. The coverage of this course complements the course entitled "Criminal Procedure: The Litigation Process," but both courses are independent and neither course is a prerequisite of the other.
LAW 670 Criminal Procedure: The Litigation Process 3 hrs
This course focuses on the law governing the various steps in the process of litigating a criminal case, including pre-trial, trial, and post-trial phases. Topics include bail, prosecutorial discretion, preliminary hearings, grand jury review, the drafting of charges, discovery, plea negotiations, speedy trial, double jeopardy, pre-trial publicity, jury selection, joinder of charges and defendants, various aspects of trial procedure, and general principles of appellate review. The coverage of this course complements the course entitled "Criminal Procedure: Constitutional Dimensions," but both courses are independent and neither course is a prerequisite of the other.
LAW 303 Disability Law 3 hrs
Students in this course will explore legal issues affecting people with disabilities. The course will examine statutes, such as the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Individuals with Disabilities in Education Act, and the Fair Housing Act, and how those laws impact a number of practice areas, including civil rights, education, employment, entertainment, housing, insurance, transportation, and more. Students will be assessed throughout the semester based on short written assignments, one longer written assignment, and practical projects. The course will not have a final exam.
LAW 3004 Election Law 2 hrs
This course provides students with an overview of state and federal election laws, and an understanding of voting rights, voting systems and the manner in which elections are conducted in the state of Georgia. This knowledge will be helpful to practitioners who may advise political candidates, political parties, or other political entities like PACS; for lawyers who may run for office themselves; for those who will serve as city/county attorneys who otherwise desire a deeper understanding of the laws and regulations governing elections in the United States. This is a 2-hour course, graded numerically.
LAW 664 Employment Law 3 hrs
This course will survey common-law and federal and state statutes regulating the relationship between an employer and an employee. Topics to be covered will include employment at will, terms and conditions of employment, public employment, employment discrimination, wages and hours, employee benefits, occupational safety, workers' compensation, and termination of the employment relationship. The course will not include coverage of 42 U.S.C. 1981, 42 U.S.C. 1983, or the National Labor Relations Act. (Courses on those statutes are discussed elsewhere. See Civil Rights, Employment Discrimination, and Labor Law.)
LAW 451 Environmental Law 3 hrs
A survey of statutory regulations applicable to the protection of the environment. Attention is directed to the role of the EPA and other administrative agencies in the development and implementation of environmental policy.
LAW 669 Environmental Law Practice 2 hrs
This course is designed to enable students to develop skills needed by attorneys that practice environmental law or that encounter environmental law in their general practice of law. Skills will include client and witness interviewing and counseling, researching and finding the law, drafting and reviewing environmental documents or environmental provisions in business or real estate documents, working with administrative agencies on policy development (e.g., commenting on rulemakings)or in an adjudicatory setting (e.g., applying for a permit, negotiating with an agency in an enforcement proceeding, or participating in mediation or similar dispute resolution processes), and trial advocacy. The course will be taught through a combination of lecture, simulations, and written assignments. Limited to 16 students. This course satisfies 2 credits of the Experiential Learning requirement.
LAW 649 Environmental Law Seminar 2 hrs
This course will supplement the introductory environmental law course and will provide an opportunity for students who have an interest in environmental law to develop a broader understanding of issues that are either not addressed in the introductory course, or are not addressed at the level of detail that is possible in a seminar setting. Topics will vary from year to year and may include: public resource management, natural resource management, toxic torts, pollution, prevention, environmental justice, international environmental law, regulation of hazardous waste and toxic substances, and regulation of air and water pollution. Research paper required. Enrollment limited to 15. This course will satisfy the Advanced Writing requirement, and will also satisfy the Seminar requirement of the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program.
LAW 455 Estate Planning 2 hrs
This class is intended to serve as an introduction to basic estate planning techniques. Both tax and non-tax aspects will be considered from the perspectives of the drafting attorney, the settlor/testator, and beneficiaries. Emphasis will be placed on the fact gathering process, drafting, and using the marital deduction, tax credits, gifts, dynasty trusts, insurance trusts, family limited partnerships, charitable split-interest trusts, GRATS, QPRTS, sales to intentionally defective grantor trusts and other estate planning techniques to solve estate planning problems. Prerequisite: Federal Taxation of Wealth Transfers or permission of instructor.
LAW 206 Evidence 3 hrs
This is a problems-based course designed to teach basic trial evidence using the Federal Rules of Evidence. The primary topics are relevance; opinion evidence; expert testimony; relevant, but inadmissible evidence; introducing real and documentary evidence, character evidence, impeachment, and hearsay.
LAW 4002 Evidentiary Hearings 1 hr
This series of courses will allow students to study discreet, law practice-oriented topics not otherwise covered in the standard law school curriculum. This course will provide practical instruction on the use of state and federal rules of evidence in evidentiary hearings, including witness impeachment, hearsay, and proffers. The course will also include discussion of and practical guidance about preparing for evidentiary hearings. The course will fulfill ABA requirements for meeting minutes and student coursework work for one credit hour. The class will meet synchronously for 13 course hours during one week of the regular semester, typically scheduled on a Friday and Saturday. Readings and asynchronous materials will be assigned before and/or after the synchronous meetings (scheduled according to the instructor's preference). Elective, evaluated on the basis of a final project or exam, graded S/U. Open to 2L and 3L students. Evidence is a pre- or co-requisite.
LAW 634 Externship I 3 - 4hrs
This course is designed to offer students practical work experience in public service offices while providing faculty supervision and guided reflection. In addition to field work, the course meets for two hours per week in a classroom. The course includes readings, reflective journals, and class discussion, all of which are designed to help students learn from their fieldwork experience. Throughout the course, students explore fundamental questions of meaning and purpose in living a life of service in the law. Students work in an approved non-profit public interest or governmental office; faculty for the course maintain a list of approved placements, but students may petition for a placement to be added. Students must work in their field placement at least 86 hours for 3 hours of credit or at least 126 hours for 4 hours of credit. Students arrange a regular work schedule with their field supervisor and submit weekly time sheets and reflective journal entries to their faculty supervisor. Enrollment is by application and permission of the faculty supervisor. Limit of 30 total students; and a limit of 15 students per section. This course provides required hours for the Experiential Learning requirement.
LAW 635 Externship II 2 - 3 hrs
This course is open to students who have completed Externship I. As in Externship I, students must work in an approved non-profit public interest or governmental office. The Director of Experiential Education will maintain a list of approved placements, but students may petition for a placement to be added. Students must work at least 100 hours for 2 hours of credit or at least 140 hours for 3 hours of credit. Students must arrange a regular work schedule with their field supervisor and submit weekly time sheets and reflective journal entries to their faculty supervisor. Although there is not a weekly classroom component as in Externship I, students will attend meetings every two weeks with other students in the class and the teacher of the course. Enrollment is by application and permission of the Director of Experiential Education. Permission to enroll in Externship II will only be granted if the student will have significant learning opportunities in the field placement beyond those available in Externship I. Enrollment limit: 8. The course is graded S/U. This course provides required hours for the Experiential Learning requirement.
LAW 443 Family Law 3 hrs
This course offers an introduction to family law in the United States today. Examples of topics covered include: marriage, non-marital relationships, parent-child relationships, divorce, custody, support, and the law's treatment of nontraditional families.
LAW 461 Federal Courts 3 hrs
An in-depth survey of the powers of federal courts under Article III of the United States Constitution. The course highlights and integrates constitutional topics of fundamental importance to any American lawyer: the respective powers of the three branches of the U.S. government; the function of federal courts within the constitutional system of checks and balances; the relationships between state and federal courts in civil and criminal litigation in a federalist republic; and state sovereignty and immunity under the Tenth and Eleventh Amendments. The course also provides an overview of common legal issues in federal courts, including: justiciability and standing; federal court subject matter jurisdiction; "Section 1983" claims alleging that agents of state or local government have violated federal constitutional or statutory rights; and federal habeas corpus actions. Graded 3-hour exam or graded paper option. About 1/3 of final grade turns on class participation, including the student's work as a leader of one of our classes during the semester. 3L students only.
LAW 2003 Federal Tax Policy Seminar 2 hrs
This course examines the effects of tax law on the public. It looks at tax treatment, such as the preference for capital gain income and the use of deductions to encourage certain preferred behaviors. In addition, the course will consider the enactment and regulation of tax laws. The course will culminate with student presentations and papers. This course will satisfy the Advanced Writing requirement, and will also satisfy the Seminar requirement of the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program.
LAW 653 Federal Tax Procedure 2 hrs
Federal Tax Procedure covers the chronology of tax litigation, from assessment by the IRS to final disposition of the case by settlement or court decision. The course will cover tax disputes, including IRS assessment authority, statutes of limitation on assessment, choice of forum, Tax Court jurisdiction, overpayments and refund procedures. Preparation of a short tax protest and Tax Court petition will be required. The course will be graded, with the grade based on an examination towards the end of the course that will be worth 60% of the final grade, and on evaluation of the writing projects. Enrollment limited to 25. Prerequisite: Income Tax. This course satisfies 2 credits of the Experiential Learning requirement.
LAW 454 Federal Taxation of Wealth Transfers 3 hrs
A study of the statutes, regulations, and decided cases relating to the federal estate, gift, and generation-skipping transfer taxes and to the income taxation of trusts and estates. Formerly entitled Taxation of Estates, Gifts and Trusts.
LAW 467 Georgia Civil Practice & Procedure 2 hrs
This course is a detailed examination of Georgia civil practice. It is intended to prepare civil litigators for issues they will face from the day they start their practice. The course "walks" through a lawsuit, covering forum selection and venue requirements, pleadings, dismissals and renewals, pretrial issues, statutes of limitations and repose, and procedural aspects of trials and appeals. The focus is on practical issues, particularly tactical advantages that can be realized with a thorough knowledge of Georgia procedural law. There is a midterm examination and a final examination. The format of the examinations is that used by the Georgia Bar Examiners on the Georgia part of the bar examination. The instructor intends the course to be a primer for the bar examination. Limited to third-year students. Limited to 35 students during Fall semester.
LAW 466 Georgia Criminal Practice & Procedure 2 hrs
This course is a detailed examination of Georgia criminal practice with a focus on trial and pre-trial procedure. It is designed to be a hands-on, relevant exploration of Georgia-specific criminal law and procedure (including both prosecution and defense). Students are evaluated through in-class exercises and a final examination.
LAW 675.01 Great Trials Seminar 2 hrs
This seminar serves as a capstone course for students interested in becoming trial lawyers. Through in-depth study of famous trials and the lawyers who tried them, students will draw out the lessons that can be learned about trial practice and procedure, trial techniques, the law of evidence and ethical issues. The seminar also will expose students to some of the history of the trial process and the legal profession. With the advice and consent of the instructor, each student will select a significant criminal, civil, foreign or international trial to study. Each student will write a paper about the trial and make a presentation to the seminar class. Enrollment limited to 15. S/U (Pass/Fail). 3Ls only. This course will satisfy the Advanced Writing requirement, and will also satisfy the Seminar requirement of the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program.
LAW 306 Habeas Project 4 hrs
This is a clinical course, and it is the only effort in Georgia to provide pro bono representation in non-capital state post-conviction matters (in Georgia, there is no right to counsel beyond one direct appeal). The Project provides client-centered representation (each student will handle 1-2 cases per semester), and the cases selected by the faculty supervisor allow students to grapple with important questions of constitutional criminal law. Under close faculty supervision, students will meet their clients; research potential issues; prepare an appellate theory; and write and ultimately file a brief or petition. In addition to working on cases, Project students will draft sections of a Pro Se Habeas Corpus Manual; will respond to legal questions from Georgia prisoners; and, on occasion, will offer amici curiae briefs in important cases before the Georgia Supreme Court. Qualified law students may sign briefs. The Project includes all procedural and substantive training necessary; the only pre-requisites are Criminal Law and Constitutional Law. Enrollment limit: 8. Enrollment is by application and permission of the faculty supervisor. Graded. May be taken up to two times. Each semester, this course either satisfies the Advanced Writing requirement and the drafting course requirement for the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program or provides required Experiential Learning credit hours. Students must elect which of these requirements it will fulfill at the start of each semester.
LAW 1015 Health Care Law 3 hrs
This course examines problems in health care delivery from the perspectives of consumers and providers. The major issues explored are: (1) quality of care including licensing and malpractice; (2) organization of the health care system including professional relationships and new organizational structures; (3) financing of medical care through private insurance and public programs and; (4) access to care including legal obligations to provide care. We will explore the traditional common-law response to these issues and contrast it with statutory and regulatory reforms as well as proposals advocating free market reforms.
LAW 1018 Immigration Appeals Clinic 3 hrs
This clinic will represent clients with immigration appeals before the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) and other courts. Students will learn asylum, Convention Against Torture, and other immigration law in class discussion, readings, and while representing clients. Most students will represent clients on appeal before the BIA, although the Clinic occasionally may also accept federal petitions for review, amici curiae briefs, and cases before asylum officers.
Students will learn advanced legal writing techniques, including appellate strategies, persuasive storytelling, the use of expert reports, and effective argument within complex legal frameworks. Under the close supervision of the professor, clinic students will work in teams to complete the tasks necessary to zealously represent their clients, including intensely reviewing transcripts of hearings before an immigration judge, interviewing the client (sometimes using interpreters), unearthing new facts about the client's case, researching domestic and international law and country conditions, developing a theory of the appeal, filing administrative motions and petitions, and drafting an appellate brief, affidavits, and motions. In doing so, students will develop a deep understanding of the complex law governing immigration relief, as well as collaboration, cultural competency, and self-evaluation. Students will also acquire practical skills, including advanced persuasive writing techniques and cross-cultural client communication.
At the outset of the course, students may elect for the course to meet the advanced writing requirement or to count towards the experiential learning requirement. It also satisfies the drafting course requirement for students pursuing the Certificate in Advanced Legal Writing, Research, and Drafting. The course is numerically graded, and it may be taken up to two times.
Immigration Law II is a prerequisite or corequisite unless waived by professor in exceptional circumstances. Enrollment limit: 8. Enrollment is by application and permission of the professor.
LAW 1025 Immigration Law 3 hrs
This course examines the law and procedures for noncitizens to obtain immigration benefits under the regime for “legal migration” to the United States, as well as the law and procedures for removing noncitizens from the United States. The course will focus, then, not only on representing clients who seek to become properly documented and on developing and implementing strategies necessary to achieve the client’s objectives within the framework of the law by getting things to “go right” as far as possible. It will also focus on representing clients in immigration enforcement proceedings and on developing and implementing strategies necessary to defend the client when things have “gone wrong” or, perhaps more accurately, “seriously wrong,” such as where the client is undocumented or, although documented, becomes deportable. The course will cover the following topics: a brief, introductory overview of the area of U.S. immigration and nationality law; the structure of relevant administrative agencies; immigrant and nonimmigrant admission categories; inadmissibility grounds; admission procedures; criminal convictions and other grounds for removal; relief from removal (excluding asylum and other forms of humanitarian relief); removal proceedings; a brief overview of immigration crimes; and an introduction to naturalization. Constitutional dimensions of U.S. immigration law will also be addressed, as will (largely though independent reading) historical, moral, and policy dimensions. The course provides students with a basic exposure to the field of immigration and nationality law and develops knowledge, skills, and dispositions necessary for “thinking like an immigration lawyer.” This course is numerically graded.
LAW 472 Immigration Law I 3 hrs
This course, which is part of the Administrative Law block, complements the advanced Immigration Law II course (which examines the law and procedures related to immigration enforcement and also covers various other topics) and the advanced Immigration Practice course (which applies the law and procedures for obtaining immigration benefits in a simulated clinical experience working with case files drawn from practice). The Immigration Law I course or its equivalent is a prerequisite for Immigration Practice and is strongly recommended for Immigration Law II (please see the Immigration Law II course description regarding the additional requirements for students who have not taken Immigration Law I or obtained its equivalent). The course provides foundational knowledge in the field of immigration and nationality law and examines the law and procedures for obtaining immigration benefits under the regime for “legal immigration.” In addition to providing foundational knowledge, then, the central focus of the course is on representing clients who seek to become properly documented and on developing and implementing strategies necessary to achieve the client’s objectives within the framework of the law by getting things to “go right” as far as possible. The course will cover the following topics: a brief, introductory overview of the area of U.S. immigration and nationality law; constitutional, historical, moral, and policy dimensions of U.S. immigration law; the structure of relevant administrative agencies; immigrant and nonimmigrant admission categories; inadmissibility grounds; admission procedures; and a brief overview of immigration crimes. The course provides students with essential knowledge of the field of immigration and nationality law and develops knowledge, skills, and dispositions necessary for “thinking like an immigration lawyer.” This course is numerically graded.
LAW 2004 Immigration Law II 3 hrs
Immigration Law II. This course, which is part of the Administrative Law block, compliments and builds on the Immigration Law I course (which provides foundational knowledge in the field of immigration and nationality law and examines the law and procedures for obtaining immigration benefits). The course examines the law and procedures addressing immigration enforcement and also covers various other topics. The central focus, then, is on representing clients in enforcement proceedings and on developing and implementing strategies necessary to defend the client when things have “gone wrong” or, perhaps more accurately, “seriously wrong,” such as where the client is undocumented or, although documented, becomes deportable. The course will cover the following core topics: criminal convictions and other grounds for removal, relief from removal, and removal proceedings. Certain related or additional topics will also be covered, although the precise topics covered will depend on legal developments. These topics include: refugees, asylum, and relief for other vulnerable groups; undocumented immigrants (aka “illegal immigration”); immigration offences and employer’s sanctions; legalization/comprehensive immigration reform; and citizenship. The course expands students’ knowledge of the field of immigration and nationality law and further develops knowledge, skills, and dispositions necessary for “thinking like an immigration lawyer.” It is strongly recommended that students take Immigration Law I before taking Immigration Law II. However, students who have not yet taken Immigration Law I or obtained its equivalent in experience or in coursework elsewhere will be asked to complete three or four additional reading assignments during the course addressing various foundational matters covered in Immigration Law I. The course is numerically graded.
LAW 202 Income Tax 3 hrs
This course is a study of the fundamental principles of the Federal income tax system as applied to individuals, including the concepts of income, allowable deductions and limitations on deductions, and the characterization of gains and losses. The course stresses reading and applying the Internal Revenue Code. Other course materials include Treasury regulations, administrative pronouncements, and decided cases.
LAW 474 Independent Research & Writing 1- 3 hrs
With the approval of a full-time faculty member, a student may register for independent research and writing after completing the first year. An independent research and writing project is normally undertaken for two hours credit, but in appropriate cases the supervising faculty member may approve registration for one or three hours credit. A student may register for only one independent research and writing project per semester and no more than two projects will be approved for any student. Credit will be awarded, in the discretion of the supervising faculty member, on either a graded or pass/fail basis, upon the completion of a written product suitable for submission for publication. At the discretion of the supervising faculty member, credit may be awarded to the fulfillment of the Advanced Writing requirement. 1-3 Credit Hours
LAW 1482 DL Insurance Law 3 hrs
This course is designed to introduce students to the basic principles governing the creation, sale and enforcement of the most common forms of insurance in the U.S. Students will be introduced to the following insurance lines: personal liability, professional liability, commercial general liability, homeowners, automobile, life and casualty, and health. The peculiarities of each line will be discussed as well as the problems common to all lines: moral hazard, adverse selection and outright fraud. The social function of insurance as well as historical anomalies are covered in order to give the student the broadest possible exposure to the issues lawyers confront regularly in this area of practice.
LAW 486 Intellectual Property 3 hrs
An overview of laws that secure rights in, and provide for the marketing of, patents, copyrights, trademarks, trade secrets, publicity rights, and personal data. Open to all upper-class students.
LAW 652 Intellectual Property Licensing 2 hrs
This is a practical course designed to introduce upper class law students to the realities of licensing intellectual property. This course focuses on intellectual property licensing, which is the primary wealth generation and maximization tool available to the owner of an intellectual property. Through theoretical discussions and practical exercises, we will examine the many facets of the licensing process, including basic to advanced licensing concepts and strategies for various types of intellectual properties; royalty analysis and audits; negotiating strategies; and policing and enforcement. The course will be taught by synchronous video conferencing. The final grade will be based on class participation, periodic written assignments, and a final exam. Limit 20.
LAW 4003 International Child Custody Disputes 1 hr
This course will provide practical instruction on the issue of resolving international child custody disputes. Students will learn about both international and U.S. legal regimes regarding child abduction and repatriation, as well as Georgia specific laws concerning child custody disputes involving non-U.S. parents. The course will fulfill ABA requirements for meeting minutes and student coursework work for one credit hour. The class will meet synchronously for 13 course hours during one week of the regular semester, typically scheduled on a Friday and Saturday. Readings and asynchronous materials will be assigned before and/or after the synchronous meetings (scheduled according to the instructor's preference). Elective, evaluated on the basis of a final project or exam, graded S/U. Open to 2L and 3L students. Family Law is a pre- or co-requisite.
LAW 1024 International Human Rights 3 hrs
This course examines international treaty and customary law protecting fundamental human rights against abuse by governments or other international actors. The major international systems studied will be the United Nations, the Council of Europe, and the Organization of American States. Readings will include judicial and administrative opinions by international and U.S. bodies, treaties, and studies by human rights groups and scholars. The principle international human rights instruments (i.e., the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and the International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights) will be thoroughly examined. Individual case studies will be evaluated throughout the term.
LAW 481 International Law 3 hrs
An introduction to public international law. The substantive coverage of the course includes peaceful settlements of disputes, international agreements in international and domestic law, the evolving law of the sea, human rights, and international attempts at controlling the use of armed force. Particular attention is paid to the differences in the evolution and enforcement of rules in decentralized systems.
LAW 481 International Law - Distance Format 3 hrs
An introduction to public international law. The substantive coverage of the course includes peaceful settlements of disputes, international agreements in international and domestic law, the evolving law of the sea, human rights, and international attempts at controlling the use of armed force. Particular attention is paid to the differences in the evolution and enforcement of rules in decentralized systems. This course is taught in synchronous video format. Students may not take this course if they have previously taken International Law.
LAW 483 International Law Seminar 2 hrs
The purpose of the seminar is to explore at a general and theoretical level the recurring problems of international law. In particular, attention will be given to the nature of the state and of sovereignty, the relationship between international law and internal legal systems, and the extent to which international law can be normative. Consideration also will be given to the implications for international law of the various schools of jurisprudence, most notably positivism, empiricism, and natural law. Enrollment Limit: 15 (Prerequisite: International Law) This course will satisfy the Advanced Writing requirement, and will also satisfy the Seminar requirement of the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program.
LAW 200 Introduction to Counseling 1 hr
This one-week workshop focuses on how lawyers interview, counsel and otherwise assist clients to identify and solve problems. Pass/fail grade is based upon full attendance, participation and completion of simulations. S/U (Pass/Fail). This course satisfies 1 credit of the Experiential Learning requirement.
LAW 4001 Introduction to Cyber Security 1 hr
This series of courses will allow students to study discreet, law practice-oriented topics not otherwise covered in the standard law school curriculum. This course provides students with an introduction to the growing field of cybersecurity, including lawyers' obiligations to protect the privacy of certain information. The course will address the role of constitutional, tort, contract, property, and statutory law in the context of cybersecurity. The course will fulfill ABA requirements for meeting minutes and student coursework work for one credit hour. The class will meet synchronously for 13 course hours during one week of the regular semester, typically scheduled on a Friday and Saturday. Readings and asynchronous materials will be assigned before and/or after the synchronous meetings (scheduled according to the instructor's preference). Elective, evaluated on the basis of a final project or exam, graded S/U. Open to 2L and 3L students.
LAW 2008 Introduction to Disaster Law Seminar 2 credits
This course is designed to teach the basic overview of disaster law and highlight systemic legal issues in a post disaster world. Students will understand the role of FEMA and interplay between state government, volunteers, and local agencies. Students will also study the concepts of risk reduction, preparedness, and their effects on vulnerable populations.
As a result of taking this course, students will be able to:
- Learn the context for “legal preparedness” to include specific steps how lawyers, courts and citizens best prepare for a disaster.
- Understand the structure of response through the published guidelines of the National Response Framework and the interplay between agencies.
- Identify legal needs in the post disaster context to include the new standards for FEMA benefits outlining details of the Individual Household Program.
- Understand disaster outreach and the role and responsibility of FEMA, the launch of bono attorneys, and the responsibility of the American Bar Association, the State Bar to coordinate a response.
- Study best methods for outreach efforts to those impacted by disaster including the most vulnerable in our society and the role of attorneys as leaders to rebuild and provide service.
Proposed Course Texts
- FEMA-Disaster Operations Legal Reference Manual-Version 3.0
- Additional required readings will be available on the Canvas course site.
This course consists of a variety of assignments. The assignments will range from in-class peer assignments, homework reading assignments, client interviews, and a final project consisting of individual/university/non-profit small business disaster planning.
This course satisfies the Advanced Writing requirement, and it also satisfies the seminar requirement for the Advanced Writing Certificate Program.
LAW 300 Introduction to Dispute Resolution 1 hr
This one-week workshop explores the many alternative ways of resolving disputes, particularly negotiation. S/U (Pass/Fail). This course satisfies 1 credit of the Experiential Learning requirement.
LAW 100 Introduction to Law 1 hr
This one-week course presents each incoming student with an initial understanding of the methods and goals of the law school classroom. The course simulates and examines the typical first-year classroom experience, including an exam, to prepare each student to get the maximum benefit from the courses that begin the second week. The Pass/Fail grade is based upon attendance, participation in class meetings, and completion of the final exam.
LAW 103 Introduction to Legal Research 1 hr
A one-credit, graded legal research course that meets in fall semester. The classes are taught by the professional librarians and cover print and electronic formats used for researching state and federal judicial, administrative, statutory and secondary sources. The course requires assignments, class attendance, and an assessment.
LAW 442 Judicial Field Placement 3 – 4 hrs
One section of Public Interest Practicum I each semester will be comprised of the students who are working for judges. These students will perform research and writing assignments for their judges and are expected to attend hearings, trials, and other proceedings. In addition to field work, the course meets for two hours per week in a classroom. The course includes readings, reflective journals, and class discussion, all of which are designed to help students learn from their fieldwork experience. Students must work in their field placement at least 86 hours for 3 hours of credit or at least 126 hours for 4 hours of credit. The hours are exclusive of class time and travel time. Students arrange a regular work schedule with their judges and submit weekly time sheets and reflective journal entries to their faculty supervisor. Enrollment is by application and permission of the faculty supervisor. Preference will be given to students who register for 4 credits. This course provides required hours for the Experiential Learning requirement.
LAW 151 Jurisdiction & Judgments 3 hrs
This course covers the key requirements for the exercise of federal judicial power: subject matter jurisdiction, including both original and supplemental subject matter jurisdiction, personal jurisdiction, notice and the opportunity to be heard, and proper venue. In addition, the course explores the procedures to remove cases from state to federal court, to transfer of venue, and to bring a declaratory judgment. The course will also address the Erie doctrine, and it will fully explore the rules governing joinder of claims and parties to pleadings. Finally, the course examines the law governing whether an earlier judgment can preclude the relitigation of claims and issues.
LAW 492 Jurisprudence 3 hrs
An overview of the major concerns of legal theory, the validity of law and the legitimacy of legal systems, and the relative merits of hierarchical legal structures as opposed to decentralized, customary systems. The topics that are usually covered include: natural law, positivism, American and Scandinavian realism, Marxism, and the historical and anthropological schools of jurisprudence.
LAW 494 Juvenile Court Practice & Procedure 2 hrs
Delinquency, deprivation, status offenses, and dependency in Juvenile Court. History of Juvenile Court, evolution of children's rights, and trends in juvenile justice. Seminar format with special emphasis on practical aspects of litigation. Enrollment limited to 20. S/U
LAW 497 Law & Literature Seminar 2 hrs
This course will examine the links between two bodies of discourse: law and literature. Law and literature are intimately related in two essential operations: interpretation and composition. Generally, law school courses in law and literature have explored these two operations by using one of two approaches: "Law as Literature," or "Law in Literature." Both methods draw on literary criticism and theory to gain new perspective and insight into the law. The "Law as Literature" school applies literary theory to legal texts. The "Law in Literature" school reads literary works dealing with legal themes or issues to help us understand the law and our role as lawyers in new ways. This course explores both of these approaches, with the goal of increasing student capabilities in both interpretation and composition. Enrollment limit of 15. This course will satisfy the Advanced Writing requirement, and will also satisfy the Seminar requirement of the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program.
LAW 302 Law of Lawyering 3 hrs
Law of Lawyering is primarily concerned with the ethical and legal regulation of the legal profession covering such topics as conflicts of interests, confidentiality, attorney-client privilege, malpractice, lawyer-client decision-making, and other similar issues. The various rules studied are the rules most frequently encountered by all practitioners. In addition to studying ethical and legal regulation, this course also addresses the ethics of our practice more generally and, most especially, the question of what we mean when we say that someone is a good lawyer. This course is required by the Law School, by the Georgia Supreme Court, and by the American Bar Association.
LAW 513 Law Review
Members of the Mercer Law Review staff and Editorial Board earn academic credit for each year served on the Review. Upon satisfactory completion of the writing, editing, and other work required for each category of Law Review membership, credit will be awarded in the Spring Semester by the faculty advisor upon recommendation of the Editor-in-Chief. Credit hours vary. Completion of a case note or comment will satisfy the Advanced Writing requirement.
LAW 511 Legal Ethics Seminar 2 hrs
This seminar explores a wide variety of issues in legal ethics selected, in consultation with the professor, by each enrolled student to respond to his or her anticipated future employment situations or own personal questions about the role of the lawyer. The issues explored in these research projects can vary from philosophical or theological matters to very specific ethical regulatory questions and all areas in between. A general theme, attempting to unite these research projects, will be offered by the professor through lectures, in class exercises, and round table discussions. Attendance is required. The class is numerically graded on the basis of the quality of the student’s participation in discussions, several required work-in-progress presentations of the projects, weekly or bi-weekly journaling with the professor regarding the student’s project, and one paper or formal presentation of the project to the class. Enrollment limit of 15. 2 credit hours. This course will satisfy the Advanced Writing requirement, and will also satisfy the Seminar requirement of the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program.
LAW 3003 Legal Letters 2 hrs
This course focuses on the drafting of legal letters. The audience, purpose, content, organizational structure, role of authorities, role of facts, voice, and style of a variety of legal letters will be examined. Students will analyze and write a variety of legal letters consistent with the nature of the letters and his or her professional responsibility. The writing assignments will include, but are not limited to, a client advice letter, a demand letter, an engagement letter, a letter of intent, a transmittal letter, and a withdrawal letter. Prerequisite: Legal Writing II. Numerically graded. Limit 24. This course satisfies either the Advanced Writing requirement, or 2 credits of the Experiential Learning requirement. This course also satisfies the drafting requirement of the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program.
LAW 118 Legal Process 1 hr
This course covers formulating a rule of law from one or more legal authorities, placing the rule in a rule-structure, analyzing the application of that rule to a set of facts and organizing a written legal discussion of that analysis. It requires completion of weekly exercises and attendance at all classes (or make-up of any absences). This course is numerically graded, beginning Fall 2021.
LAW 152 Legal Writing I 3 hrs
Legal Writing I covers research strategy, forms of legal reasoning, professionalism, and predictive legal writing. The course teaches writing as a constructive process and requires completion of at least two major writing assignments and a final examination consistent with the goals of the course.
LAW 207 Legal Writing II 3 hrs
Legal Writing II continues coverage of research strategy, forms of legal reasoning, and professionalism, but now in the context of a new form of discourse--persuasion. Course requirements include completion of at least two major persuasive writing assignments. Pre-requisite Legal Writing I.
LAW 522 Local Government Law 2 hrs
The nature, powers and liabilities of cities, counties and other units of local government and their relationship to state and federal governments. Specific attention is given to liability of local governments and officers, public land acquisition, local government contracts, government financing, limitations and restrictions on powers.
LAW 1021 Low-Income Tax Clinic 4 credits
Students in the Tax Clinic will represent low-income taxpayers primarily in controversies with the Internal Revenue Service. Students will take the lead in interviewing and counseling clients, conducting factual investigations, determining alternatives for resolving disputes, advocating on the taxpayer’s behalf, and negotiating agreements with the IRS. Students may have an opportunity to represent taxpayers in litigation in the United States Tax Court. Students may also participate in community outreach and education on taxpayer issues.
The course will include a classroom component. The classroom portion of the course will cover tax practice and procedure and relevant substantive law along with basic lawyering skills. The class will meet weekly for two hours. During class sessions discussions of specific taxpayers’ issues will take place. Students will also meet weekly to discuss assigned cases with the clinic director or supervising attorney.
Because the Tax Clinic teaches lawyering skills applicable across numerous practice areas, students are encouraged to enroll whether they have an existing interest in tax law and practice or simply seek an immersive law practice experience through which they can learn valuable skills and provide pro bono representation to those in need.
The clinic will be offered starting spring 2022 with a maximum enrollment of 10 students with plans to increase enrollment in the future. Cases will come from a variety of sources including Legal Aid and Middle Georgia Justice.
Pre- and Corequisites: Law of Lawyering and either Federal Income Taxation or Federal Tax Procedure.
Course credits: 3 or 4 credit hours. (Students must work at least 86 hours to receive 3 credit hours and at least 126 hours to receive 4 credit hours.) Enrollment is by application and permission of the professor. Numerically graded.
LAW 629 Managing Law Practice 2 hrs
This course explores the organizational setting of law practice through student simulations and guest appearances by practicing lawyers. Special attention is given to the management of law firms with fewer than ten lawyers. Subjects include partnership structure, client relations, malpractice insurance, computer applications, billing, financial planning, marketing, specialization, compensation, and the hiring process. One session is devoted to solo practice. Enrollment limited to 24. This course satisfies 2 credits of the Experiential Learning requirement.
LAW 612 Mergers & Acquisitions 3 hrs
This class is designed to provide law school students who intend to practice transactional law with some of the basic practical skills required to counsel companies with respect to business combinations, including asset acquisitions, mergers, tender offers, and leveraged buyouts. Students in the course will learn to identify the key drivers of mergers and acquisitions activity, as well as the factors involved in a typical business combination (directors’ duties and tax and accounting rules peculiar to merger and acquisition activity, among others), the roles of the parties and the relevant documents. It will also address applicable federal and state law (principally that of Delaware) relating to business combinations, both friendly and contested. Business Associations is a pre-requisite/co-requisite to this course.
LAW 307 Military Law 2 hrs
This course explores the constitutional framework and historical basis for American military law and contrasting examples from other nations. The course uses the construct “Law of War, Law of War Powers, and Law of the Warrior” to analyze questions facing political leaders, combat commanders, and soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines. Military Law draws from first-year courses, America’s founding documents, and current events to build a working vocabulary of military law terms. Military Law is also a platform for developing legal presentation skills, as students select topics for research and presentation to the class. These presentations are a primary means of teaching and learning relevant material on the law of armed conflict. Previous topics have included such matters as prisoners of war, rules of engagement, the Geneva Conventions, suspension of habeas corpus and martial law, civilian casualties, insurrection, media coverage and classified material, robots and drones in combat, bars to military service, chain of command, courts martial, and many more. The course typically includes a field trip to Andersonville National Monument and POW Museum. Graded pass/fail.
LAW 520 Moot Court Competition 3 hrs
All second-year students are eligible for membership on the Moot Court Board. Students are selected to membership each year based primarily on their performance in Legal Writing II. Board members, in both their second and third years, represent the Law School in various state, regional, and national moot court competitions. The Law School has been quite successful with its competition teams, having won at the state, regional and national levels. Students on competition teams receive invaluable training and experience. In addition, each member of a competition team receives three hours of pass/fail academic credit in the semester in which the competition takes place.
LAW 1013 Oxford Human Rights Program 3 hrs
This class is an exploration of contemporary international conflicts. Areas of study include human rights in and after conflict, humanitarian action, conflict trends, human rights law, and peacemaking with a focus on recent armed conflicts. Students meet weekly from the beginning of the Spring semester until March, at which time they will attend an intensive week-long workshop at Oxford University (accompanied by the course instructor). The workshop in Oxford is a mix of seminars, working groups, and student presentations. The workshop is convened by members of the Institute for Ethics, Law and Armed Conflict at Oxford University. After returning from the workshop students will complete a substantial paper on an issue related to the program. The course satisfies the Advanced Writing Requirement. Enrollment requires permission of the instructor.
LAW 210 Patent Law & Litigation 3 hrs
This course will explore patent prosecution and the subsequent litigation of issued patents. We will learn patentable subject matter, utility, the conditions of patentability, unenforceability, infringement, and remedies. Along the way we will examine how complex issues of case law, regulation, statutes, and technology arise and are resolved by the courts. The final grade will be based on class participation and a final exam.
LAW 2006 Police Practices Seminar 2 hrs
Mercer Law is an inaugural member of the ABA Legal Education Police Practices Consortium (the Consortium), whose mission is to “advance improved police practices at local, state, and national levels.” In addition to “advanc[ing] the widespread adoption of model police practices,” the Consortium intends to initiate other projects – including research – “designed to support effective policing, promote racial equality in the criminal justice system, and eliminate tactics that are racially motivated or have a disparate impact based on race.”
This seminar is intended to create a body of research in furtherance of the Consortium’s mission to support effective policing and promote racial equity in the criminal justice system. The course will begin with a broad orientation to the issues, and initial readings will include works by Paul Butler, Michelle Alexander, and the late William Stuntz. Students will then develop paper topics in consultation with the instructor (working in consultation with the Consortium on research needs), participate in roundtable discussions and workshops with their classmates, complete a substantial research paper, and present the final results of their research to their classmates. Although all topics will focus on police conduct (or misconduct) and the promotion of effective, nondiscriminatory policing, legal subject areas may vary: for example, some papers may focus on qualified immunity, while others may concern more traditional criminal procedure issues. Some student research projects will have a Georgia-specific focus.
Finally, in addition to drafting a final research paper, students may undertake other academic activities related to the Consortium’s mission.
This numerically graded course satisfies the Advanced Writing requirement.
LAW 2007 Poverty & the Law Seminar 2 hrs
This course will examine the interaction between poverty and the legal system in our society. Students will learn about the ways in which governmental programs, the civil legal system, and the criminal legal system respond to individuals and communities living in poverty. The course will touch upon several substantive areas of law that impact impoverished individuals every day, such as housing law, public benefits, and health law. Students would select a topic related to the course material, research that topic thoroughly, draft, edit, and submit a formal legal paper, approximately twenty pages in length. This paper would satisfy the advanced writing requirement. Students will have the opportunity to think critically about the way the legal system interacts with individuals living in poverty, as well as the role that policy makers and lawyers should play in the future. No pre-requisite courses. Numerically graded. Two credits. This course satisfies the Advanced Writing requirement, and it also satisfies the seminar requirement for the Advanced Writing Certificate Program.
LAW 1020 Privacy Law: Counseling Clients & Litigating Cases in the Digital Age 3 hrs
This course addresses the need for lawyers to be able to counsel clients as to their obligations to protect the privacy of certain information, including the role of constitutional, tort, contract, property, and statutory law in creating those obligations. It includes understanding both contractual and technological means to meet those obligations, such as through non-disclosure or non-compete agreements, virus detection, anti-phishing software, and professional service providers. In addition, it addresses the counseling required of a client who has been hacked or as otherwise allowed protected information to be exposed. Finally, the course addresses the rule, agreements, and technologies that litigators must rely upon to protect against disclosure of protected information during litigation. To understand these issues, the course includes an understanding of the operation of the Internet, computers, as well as technologies to protect against and detect hacking or misuse by employees or other insiders of protected information.
LAW 484 Problems in Insurance Litigation 2 hrs
The identification and correlation of the various types of insurance benefits found in personal injury and wrongful death actions, to include automobile no-fault, uninsured motorists, collision, medical payment, liability (public liability and private automobile, homeowners, and business premises liability), hospitalization, and workers compensation. Emphasis on Georgia law. Enrollment limited to 20.
LAW 640 Problems in Trial Evidence 2 hrs
Students will research, brief and orally present courtroom arguments of relatively to highly complex evidentiary issues as they might arise in the pre-trial and mid-trial stages of civil and criminal trials. Limited enrollment of 10. Evidence is a prerequisite. Pass/Fail. This course satisfies 2 credits of the Experiential Learning requirement.
LAW 3000 Process & Procedure in State Debtor-Creditor Remedies 2 hrs
This is a practical, hands-on course in giving students the opportunity to prosecute and defend against creditor and other contract claims through demand, litigation, and post-judgment recovery. The course emphasizes strategy directed to contract litigation and related debtor/creditor law but typically applicable to civil litigation in general. In includes the proper use of civil procedure, competent drafting and oral advocacy, and a general appreciation of remedies and defenses under substantive state law. Topics and related assignments involve proper and improper demand letters, pursuing the correct persons and entities, planning lawsuits, asserting effective and timely defenses, the value and purposes of summary judgment, motions to strike, default motions, meaningful discovery, garnishment, traverse, and the do’s and don’ts of every day stipulations, filings, and court and counsel interactions. Enrollment limit 16. This course satisfies 2 credits of the Experiential Learning requirement.
LAW 116 Property 4 hrs
This course examines the history and development of the Anglo-American system of real property rights, estates in land, possessory and non-possessory interests and assorted legal doctrines, both ancient and modern, involving real and personal property interests.
LAW 548 Public Defender Externship 4 hrs
Students will assist in the defense of felony cases under the joint supervision of staff attorneys in local public defender offices and a professor responsible for the quality of the educational experience. The Clinic includes a mandatory seminar component. Students will be sworn in under the Supreme Court of Georgia Student Practice Rule, and will be able to appear in court under the supervision of an attorney. Training will be provided by the staff attorneys in local offices, by professors at the law school, and by other experts as available. The Clinic will be offered in the fall and spring semesters, and requires an average of fourteen hours of fieldwork per week, in addition to outside classroom preparation and reflective journaling. Enrollment is limited to 15 third-year students. Permission of the professor is required to enroll. S/U. This course provides required hours for the Experiential Learning requirement.
LAW 544 Public Health Law 2 hrs
A study of the law governing the practice of public health by state, local, and federal agencies, as well as health care professionals and institutions. Current issues and their effect on public health law, including AIDS, bioterrorism and privacy legislation, will be discussed.
LAW 540 Real Estate Transactions 3 hrs
A study of the basic elements of a real estate transaction, the methods of financing the purchase of residential property, priority of claims at common law and under the recording system and other methods of title assurance, transfers of interests in encumbered real property, and mortgage foreclosures, concluding with a study of the elements of a commercial real estate transaction.
LAW 542 Remedies 3 hrs
A survey of remedies available through the avenues of equity, restitution, and damages. Emphasis is accorded to the relationships among these areas, and to the difficulties involved in applying "established" rules to actual situations. 3L's only.
LAW 428 Secured Transactions 3 hrs
This is a course on secured transactions and commercial lawyering. Emphasis will be on the creation, perfection, and maintenance of security interests under Article 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code. We will also address in depth issues of priority which result from the creation of security interests. (Formerly Commercial Transactions)
LAW 552 Securities Regulation 3 hrs
This course covers both primary and secondary transactions involving securities. Included are materials addressing the definition of a security; public offerings; exempt transactions; insider transactions; tender offers for corporate control; and antifraud provisions. Business Associations is a pre-requisite/co-requisite. There will be a one-hour end-term examination in lieu of an examination during finals period.
LAW 4004 Selected Topics in Advanced Legal Research 1 hr
This course would provide detailed substantive specific research instruction to complement upper-level courses, seminars, and clinics such as bankruptcy, immigration, tax, foreign & international law, and/or health law. Students would be introduced to advanced research techniques, tools, databases, and print resources to enhance their basic legal research skills from Introduction to Legal Research or Advanced Legal Research. Advanced vendor training in these substantive specific topics would include litigation and analytic tools.
Course would be conducted over a two-day period to meet the one-hour requirement for credit.
Nationally recognized experts in the various topics would be included where the schedule permits such as Ira Kurzban, Gail Richmond, Lindsay Wiley, and Lyonette Louis-Jacques.
Credit would be given for attendance, participation, and final paper or project on a topic of the student’s choice and approved by instructor. The course may be repeated for credit for different subject matter topics.
LAW 500 Selected Topics in Modern Family Law Seminar 2 hrs
This seminar will provide an in-depth examination of a number of today’s most salient family law issues. Early in the semester, each student, after consulting with the professor, will select a modern family law issue about which he or she will become the “class expert.” Each student will then prepare materials for and lead a one-hour class session on the legal issue he or she has chosen. In addition, students will write a substantial paper on a topic that falls within his or her chosen modern family law issue. A wide variety of topics are available to students, including marriage and alternative relationships, intra-family violence and abuse, assisted reproduction, parental rights and duties, how family law addresses issues related to gender, race, class, and sexual orientation, and more. The course will be numerically graded. Enrollment limit of 15. This course will satisfy the Advanced Writing requirement, and will also satisfy the Seminar requirement of the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program.
LAW 1010 Semester in Practice I 1 – 12 hrs
This course is designed to offer students practical work experience in public service offices while providing faculty supervision and guided reflection. In addition to field work, the course meets for two hours per week in a classroom. The course includes readings, reflective journals, and class discussion, all of which are designed to help students learn from their fieldwork experience. Throughout the course, students explore fundamental questions of meaning and purpose in living a life of service in the law. Students work in an approved non-profit public interest or governmental office; faculty for the course maintain a list of approved placements, but students may petition for a placement to be added. The amount of credit hours is allocated based upon the number of field work hours. Students arrange a regular work schedule with their field supervisor and submit weekly time sheets and reflective journal entries to their faculty supervisor. Enrollment is by application and permission of the faculty supervisor. Limit of 30 total students; and a limit of 15 students per section. This course provides required hours for the Experiential Learning requirement. A minimum GPA of 83 is required to participate in this program. Formerly titled Externship I (Atlanta) prior to Spring 2021.
LAW 1009 Semester in Practice II 1 – 12 hrs
This course is designed to offer students practical work experience in public service offices while providing faculty supervision and guided reflection. In addition to field work, the course meets for two hours per week in a classroom. The course includes readings, reflective journals, and class discussion, all of which are designed to help students learn from their fieldwork experience. Throughout the course, students explore fundamental questions of meaning and purpose in living a life of service in the law. Students work in an approved non-profit public interest or governmental office; faculty for the course maintain a list of approved placements, but students may petition for a placement to be added. The amount of credit hours is allocated based upon the number of field work hours. Students arrange a regular work schedule with their field supervisor and submit weekly time sheets and reflective journal entries to their faculty supervisor. Enrollment is by application and permission of the faculty supervisor. Limit of 30 total students; and a limit of 15 students per section. This course provides required hours for the Experiential Learning requirement. A minimum GPA of 83 is required to participate in this program. Formerly titled Externship II (Atlanta) prior to Spring 2021.
LAW 397 Sexuality and the Law Seminar 2 hrs
The class will examine laws and regulations relating to sexual orientation and gender identity, and the effects of other laws on sexual minorities. We will review the history of persecution of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people; the legal and social struggle for recognition of LGBT rights; and social phenomena such as "passing" and gender and sexual identity as reflected or constructed by laws and legal doctrine (e.g., constitutional and statutory protection or denial of rights, familial recognition, and comparative legal treatment of sexual minorities.) In the process, the course will examine how social movements are reflected in legal development and vice versa. Ideally, this will provide students with a model for achieving social or legal change in this and other contexts. This course will also provide some practical guidance to future attorneys who may represent members of sexual minorities after graduation, by offering creative approaches to couples and individuals whose needs are not recognized under current legal paradigms. (Entitled Sexual Orientation and the Law through spring 2010.) This course will satisfy the Advanced Writing requirement, and will also satisfy the Seminar requirement of the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program. Limit 15.
LAW 154 Statutory Law & Analysis 2 hrs
This course will cover the fundamental skills involved in reading, understanding, and applying statutory language to the resolution of a legal issue. The students will learn about methods of statutory interpretation and will be required to apply these skills throughout the semester to various hypothetical fact scenarios. The course will cover the parts of a statute, the interrelationship between statutes and other sources of law, and the methods of reading and interpreting statutes.
LAW 216 Summary Judgment Practice 2 hrs
Designed for students with an interest in litigation, this course builds upon legal writing skills developed through the core curriculum. Working with documents from an actual court case, students will read pleadings and depositions to identify relevant issues of fact useful in analyzing a contract and/or tort dispute. Using the identified facts, and working as advocates, participants in the class will then draft a brief in support of a motion for summary judgment, a brief in opposition to the motion, and orally argue the motion. The goal of the course is to familiarize students with litigation practice while simultaneously enhancing written advocacy skills. Students selected for law review and/or participating in a moot court competition are cautioned that this class contains written assignments with several deadlines that fall early in the semester. These deadlines may conflict with other responsibilities. The course will be numerically graded. This course will satisfy either the Advanced Writing requirement, or 2 credits of the Experiential Learning requirement. This course also satisfies the drafting requirement of the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program. Enrollment is limited to 14.
LAW 602 Summer Externship 2 - 3 hrs
Students work in an approved public interest or governmental law office under the supervision of a practicing attorney and the general supervision of a faculty member. In addition to the work in the public interest law office, students are required to participate in two two-hour class sessions: the first takes place at the end of the Spring semester and prepares students for their field placement experience; the second takes place at the beginning of the Fall semester and gives students the opportunity to reflect on the experiences together. Students also participate in a web-based, faculty-led guided discussion board concerning issues common to all field placements. Students also turn in regular reflective journals and weekly timesheets to the faculty supervisor. Students must work at least 120 hours for 2 hours of credit or at least 180 hours for 3 hours of credit. Students may not earn more than 3 credit hours in one summer, but the course may be repeated for credit one time, for a maximum total credit over two summers of six hours. Enrollment is by application and permission of the faculty member in charge of the course. The public interest faculty will maintain a list of approved placements, but students may petition for a placement to be added. The course is graded S/U. This course provides required hours for the Experiential Learning requirement.
LAW 1017 Survey of the First Amendment 3 hrs
This course is designed to provide a comprehensive survey of a vital and interesting field of American Constitutional law: The First Amendment. The course will cover freedom of expression (including freedom of speech and of the press) and freedom of religion (including the Free Exercise Clause and the Establishment Clause). American Constitutional System is a prerequisite. The course is numerically graded.
LAW 488 Taxation of Pass-Through Entities 2 hrs
This course is an introduction to the taxation of pass-through entities, including partnerships, limited partnerships, limited liability companies, and S corporations. Emphasis will be placed on problem solving. Income Tax is a pre-requisite.
LAW 4001 Technology and Law Practice 1 hr
This course provides students with an introduction to technology skills lawyers use in everyday law practice, including creating spreadsheets in Excel, creating tables of contents in Word, mastering e-filing, and managing e-mail ethically, competently, and efficiently. The course will fulfill ABA requirements for meeting minutes and student coursework work for one credit hour. The class will meet synchronously for 13 course hours during one week of the regular semester, typically scheduled on a Friday and Saturday. Readings and asynchronous materials will be assigned before and/or after the synchronous meetings (scheduled according to the instructor's preference). Elective, evaluated on the basis of a final project or exam, graded S/U. Open to 2L and 3L students.
LAW 149 The Legal Profession 3 hrs
The Legal Profession course is an exploration of lawyer professionalism. Students learn about what "professionalism" means for lawyers and why it matters. They see what pressures the practice of law places on professionalism in different settings. The students explore the many ways in which the legal profession seeks, imperfectly, to create and perpetuate the conditions that promote professionalism. This course also examines the extraordinary challenges and opportunities that come with a life in the law, and the students study ways in which professionalism contributes to the satisfaction that lawyers find in their calling. In addition, to class readings, discussions, guest speakers, and an exam, the students write two papers reflecting on their career goals. They also visit in small groups with experienced lawyers to discuss life in the legal profession, and they read a biography of a famous lawyer or judge and discuss it in a small group setting. This course is graded on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis.
LAW 2002 The Religion Causes of the First Amendment Seminar 2 hrs
This seminar provides both an introduction to, and a detailed examination of, the First Amendment’s Establishment and Free Exercise Clauses. The issues that arise under the Religion Clauses–prayer in public schools, state aid to parochial schools, religious displays on public property, religious claims for individual exemptions from generally applicable laws, and more–have been among the most heavily litigated and hotly contested constitutional issues of the past fifty years. In the early part of the semester, the seminar meets to discuss assigned readings, which primarily include the key U.S. Supreme Court cases in the area. The class meetings in the latter part of the semester are devoted to discussions of each student’s seminar paper. Each student is required to submit a substantial paper on an approved topic, which may include topics not specifically covered in the assigned readings. In addition, each student is assigned to write brief written critiques of two other students’ papers and to lead, with one other student, the class discussion of those papers. Enrollment limited to 15. This course will satisfy the Advanced Writing requirement, and will also satisfy the Seminar requirement of the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program.
LAW 489 Topics in the Jurisprudence of Crimes Seminar 2 hrs
In general, the course addresses basic issues relating to the substance of crime and punishment: reasons for punishment; the appropriateness of incarceration rather than other forms of deterrence; the nature of criminal harm; the moral significance of harm; the role of causation in determining culpability; consent to crimes; objective and subjective views of criminality; the development of particular crimes and modes of criminality, e.g., conspiracy, accomplice liability, and so on. We will read material that sets out and reflects upon some of the primary philosophical foundations for our conceptions of freedom and responsibility. Will require a major paper and journal. Although the amount of reading is manageable, the content is not for wimps. This spring, we will again consider issues of criminal law and defenses.
In the Spring of 2020, this course will be taught by synchronous distance learning. Zoom and video conferencing will be used instead of live class meetings for most, if not all, class sessions. Students must have a laptop with a video camera and microphone, and the Zoom software (which the law school has a license to use). If a student does not have such a device, they should consult with the Director of the law school's Information Technology Department prior to taking the course to arrange for use of one when required. Numerical Grade. Enrollment limited to 15. This course will satisfy the Advanced Writing requirement, and will also satisfy the Seminar requirement of the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program.
LAW 656 Tort Law Seminar 2 hrs
The seminar will focus on selected current issues in the law of torts in the context of the classical principles of civil liability. Reading assignments will include in-depth analytical treatments of landmark judicial decisions in the law of torts, as well as contemporary cases and statutes. Students will prepare individual research papers on topics chosen with the approval of the instructor and will present the results of their research to the class in the latter weeks of the course. Grading will be based on the quality of the research paper, the oral presentation of that paper, and class participation. Graded. Enrollment limited to 15. 3 L students only. This course will satisfy the Advanced Writing requirement, and will also satisfy the Seminar requirement of the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program.
LAW 119 Torts 4 hrs
This course examines the principles underlying the law of civil wrongs to persons and property. Studying common law cases on liability for negligent conduct, students in this course explore principles of compensation, deterrence, and risk allocation. The course begins with a consideration of intentional torts and ends with an introduction to the concepts of liability for abnormally dangerous activities and defective products.
LAW 560 Torts II 3 hrs
This course addresses selected topics in the law of civil liability that are not covered in depth in the first-year Torts course. Torts II addresses products liability, defamation, nuisance, damages, and business torts (including fraud, misrepresentation and interference with contractual relationships), and includes common defenses and immunities.
LAW 527 Transportation Law & Politics Seminar 2 hrs
This course explores how transportation laws tend to structure road wars, sprawl fights, pork-barrel politics, and community planning. The course highlights the real people who help make hard transportation decisions about such things as where the rubber meets the road. Open to second- and third-year students. Numeric grading. Enrollment limit of 15. This course will satisfy the Advanced Writing requirement, and will also satisfy the Seminar requirement of the Advanced Legal Writing Certificate Program.
LAW 564 Trial Practice 3 hrs
The course is designed to develop trial skills through the preparation and role-playing of various trial tasks using simulated cases and simulated trial situations. The class sessions consists of one hour of lecture and demonstration and two hours of small section meetings in which each student will practice a particular skill. Each performing student is given an intensive critique by a member of the faculty. After ten weeks of preparation on specific trial tasks, the students participate in both a bench trial and a jury trial. Pre-requisite: Evidence. Enrollment limited to 18 per section. S/U (Pass/Fail). This course satisfies 3 credits of the Experiential Learning requirement.
LAW 254 Wills, Trusts & Estates 3 hrs
This course covers the basic concepts of the gratuitous transfer of wealth, including intestate succession; the general law of wills, including the formalities of execution, testamentary capacity, grounds for challenge, revocation, and revival; will substitutes, including gifts and joint tenancies; the general law of trusts, including creation, management, modification, and termination; health care planning; and miscellaneous issues concerning the administration of estates.
LAW 571 Worker's Compensation 2 hrs
This course reviews the compensation systems for industrial injuries and occupational diseases. Assigned reading will be from the Georgia courts and workers' compensation statute. No textbook is required. Emphasis will be on the practice of workers' compensation law, including student participation in witness examination exercises and case strategy. The course will also look at the medical aspect of injuries when evaluating and preparing for litigation in this area. Assigned cases will be briefed in class as called on by the instructor.