Courses

  • LAW JD 814: Family Law
    This survey course will provide an introduction to the legal regulation of the family. The course will focus on the legal regulation and response to both adult and adult-child relationships. Topics covered will include: cohabitation; marriage; civil union; divorce and dissolution of relationships; the financial consequences of divorce including property division and alimony; premarital agreements; the laws governing non-marital relationships; family mediation; child custody, visitation, and parenting plans; child support; paternity; assisted reproductive technologies; and adoption. The course will also cover the interaction between families and the state in related areas of law including employment law and education law. There will be a final examination as well as in-class drafting and negotiation exercises.
  • LAW JD 815: Corporations for LLMs
    Course about the legal structure and characteristics of business corporations. Topics include the promotion and formation of corporations; the distribution of power between management and shareholders; the limitations on management powers imposed by state law fiduciary duties and federal securities laws; shareholder derivative suits; capital structure and financing of corporations; and fundamental changes in corporate structure, such as mergers and sales of assets. The course serves as a PREREQUISITE to advanced courses.
  • LAW JD 816: Corporations
    Course about the legal structure and characteristics of business corporations. Topics include the promotion and formation of corporations; the distribution of power between management and shareholders; the limitations on management powers imposed by state law fiduciary duties and federal securities laws; shareholder derivative suits; capital structure and financing of corporations; and fundamental changes in corporate structure, such as mergers and sales of assets. The course serves as a PREREQUISITE to advanced courses. GRADING NOTICE: The CR/NC/H option is not offered in Professor Walker or Professor Tung's sections.
  • LAW JD 817: Advanced Human Trafficking Clinic: Seminar (S)
    The Advanced Human Trafficking Clinic gives students the opportunity to use their lawyering skills to represent human trafficking survivors and engage in systemic legal advocacy. The program includes a serious classroom component during which students will learn the theories of practice for use in the field and explore advanced topics. Advanced Human Trafficking includes 6 students taught by one clinical instructor. Half of the classes are devoted to activities and simulations in which you role play with the skills that are taught. Requirements include active class participation, simulations, journals, and a final brief. GRADING NOTICE: HTC does not offer the CR/NC/H option.
  • LAW JD 818: Advanced Human Trafficking (C)
    Students will continue to represent human trafficking survivors in a variety of contexts. They will be expected to contribute ten hours per week to represent human trafficking survivors. The clinical work will be based at the Family Justice Center, which provides space to agencies providing social, legal and other services to human trafficking survivors.
  • LAW JD 819: Criminal Procedure: Comprehensive
    This course examines basic issues in criminal procedure that cut across the investigative and adjudicative stages. We will consider how the Constitution shapes the criminal justice system in the courtroom in areas such as the concepts of the presumption of innocence and proof beyond a reasonable doubt, the right to counsel, grand jury requests for the production of evidence, plea bargaining and the application of the Exclusionary Rule seeking to suppress evidence the police obtained in violation of the Constitution. We will also study the limits the Constitution places on the power of the police in the areas of interrogation, searches, seizures of property and stop and arrest, paying particular attention to the issue of racial profiling. RESTRICTION: Students may not enroll in this section and Criminal Procedure (JD821). Students who previously enrolled in Criminal Procedure: Adjudicatory (JD820) are also restricted from registering.
  • LAW JD 821: Criminal Procedure: Investigatory Process
    This course covers search and seizure, the privilege against self-incrimination, confessions and the rights to counsel during custodial police interrogation. In general the course will examine the constitutional law in cases arising out of the conflict between police practices and the Bill of Rights. RESTRICTION: Students may not enroll in this section and Criminal Procedure (JD819).
  • LAW JD 822: Privacy (S)
    Modern information technology and new information-intensive businesses and social practices have moved privacy concerns into the spotlight. And though privacy law has existed as a legal practice area for a generation or more, laws and practice in the area are increasingly complex and evolving rapidly. This course examines law and policy issues concerning personal information and privacy. Law enforcement, national security, and other public law topics will be considered, but the main focus will be civil law and the use of personally identifying information by businesses. We will consider privacy-related statutes and regulations; a variety of recent controversies drawing from Constitutional law, contract, and tort law; established privacy regimes in the EU and elsewhere; and emerging laws that have implications for the use and protection of personal information globally. LIMITED WRITING REQUIREMENT OPTION: A limited number of students may be permitted to satisfy the upper-class writing requirement with the approval of the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs. GRADING NOTICE: This seminar does not offer the CR/NC/H option. **A student who fails to attend the initial meeting of a seminar (designated by an (S) in the title), or to obtain permission to be absent from either the instructor or the Registrar, may be administratively dropped from the seminar. Students who are on a wait list for a seminar are required to attend the first seminar meeting to be considered for enrollment.
  • LAW JD 823: Compliance and Risk Management
    This course will examine compliance and risk management with an overview of the broad regulatory requirements and structures applicable in global economies across multiple industries. The purpose of the course is to offer a foundation for those interested in work with regulated industries together with practical skill application. Students will learn how to assist clients in navigating highly complex regulatory environments and explore specific compliance issues in highly regulated industries, such as financial services, pharmaceuticals, health care, government procurement, energy and information technology. Students will apply knowledge through simulations and experiential assignments leading to practical skill development for use in compliance related careers. The course will include the review of specific guidelines (such as the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and the COSO Framework) as well as the following topics: Creating and Maintaining a Comprehensive Compliance and Risk Program; Drafting Effective Policies, Procedures and other Controls; Internal Investigations; Managing Law Enforcement and Regulatory Investigations; Criminal and Enforcement Action Response; Business Culture and Ethics in Complex Organizations. Together with practical skill acquisition, students will end the course with an understanding of the creation of a strong program and the ethical management of the compliance and risk functions in a complex organization. NOTE: This course satisfies the Upper-class Professional Skills requirement.
  • LAW JD 824: Juvenile Delinquency (S)
    The American juvenile justice system was established over one hundred years ago to address the problem of young offenders. This course examines the historical, social and legal foundations for our current system. We will examine the issue of "rights" as applied to children and look at the effects of ideology and politics on the current juvenile justice system. How have assumptions of childhood and responsibility changed? Has the juvenile court been "criminalized" with the introduction of due process rights for children? Under what circumstances are children treated as adult offenders? Selected issues for inquiry include: police interrogation of juveniles; school safety and zero tolerance policies; adjudicative competency; anti-youth crime policies; conditions of incarceration; and changes brought about by elimination of mandatory juvenile life without parole. We will examine these issues through use of court cases, law review articles, governmental and private organizational position papers, and legislative history. Using the Massachusetts model, one of the early and often emulated juvenile systems, we will examine the changes in the prosecution and incarceration of juveniles over the past century. As we consider the overarching issue of whether it makes sense to maintain a separate justice system for juveniles, we will compare our system to those of other nations. We will visit the Boston Juvenile Court to observe a delinquency session and speak with court personnel. Students are expected to attend each class prepared to discuss the assigned readings. Course requirements include a 15-20 page final paper, a class presentation based on the paper topic or related class readings, and several assigned reading response papers over the course of the semester. A limited number of students will be permitted to fulfill the upper-class writing certification requirement. This is a graded course. NOTE: This seminar satisfies the Upper-class Professional Skills requirement. GRADING NOTICE: This course does not offer the CR/NC/H option. **A student who fails to attend the initial meeting of a seminar (designated by an (S) in the title), or to obtain permission to be absent from either the instructor or the Registrar, may be administratively dropped from the seminar. Students who are on a wait list for a seminar are required to attend the first seminar meeting to be considered for enrollment.
  • LAW JD 826: Mediation: Theory & Practice (S)
    Mediation is part of the legal landscape in almost every substantive area and legal setting. This course will cover the theory and practice of mediation, the use of mediation to resolve disputes in various different legal contexts, and the development of practical mediation skills. We will examine the mediation process from the role of the mediator through the attorney representing a party in mediation. We will also address direct negotiation, the decision to mediate, mediator selection, preparation for mediation, and ethical issues involved in negotiation. The course will provide skill building through several interactive role-plays, in which students will have opportunities to act as a mediator, a party in mediation, and counsel to a party in mediation. The role play mediations and other exercises will survey many of the areas in which mediation is being used, including business and commercial; court-connected, federal-state agency (environmental and others); construction, employment/workplace; family/ divorce; school, community, and international. Due to the interactive nature of the class, students will be expected to attend all scheduled classes and to participate actively. Active participation includes in-class discussions, mediation role-plays, assigned reading, and writing a weekly mediator's journal. NOTES: This seminar does not satisfy the Upper-class Writing Requirement. This seminar satisfies the upper-class professional skills requirement. ** A student who fails to attend the initial meeting of a seminar, or to obtain permission to be absent from either the instructor or the Registrar, will be administratively dropped from the seminar. Students who waitlist for a seminar are required to attend the first seminar meeting to be considered for enrollment.
  • LAW JD 828: Wrongful Convictions Clinic (C)
    Participants will engage in screening applications from prisoners claiming innocence who have requested help from the New England Innocence Project. This may involve reading prisoner questionnaires, pleadings and court opinions in the case, legal research and analysis of the requirements for obtaining a new trial, review of attorney files, and search for forensic evidence in the case. Clinic students must attend biweekly meetings as determined necessary by Professor Cormier, and spend at least five hours a week on Clinic tasks, under supervision, for the full academic year. If investigation of the prisoner's case finishes at the end of the Fall Semester, or part-way through the Spring Semester, the Clinic work will end at that time. Most often, however, Clinic obligations continue throughout the academic year. Students will receive one pass/fail credit for each full semester of work. If, however, work on the prisoner's case is not finished by December, credit for the Fall will be deferred until the work is completed. Hours spent on Clinic work in the Spring semester that do not receive credit may be counted toward satisfaction of the School's Pro Bono Pledge. Participants will be expected to attend an evening orientation program, conducted in late September at the New England Innocence Project. NOTES: The clinic will meet from 6:30-9:30 on a weekday to be determined by the needs of the enrolled students. This Clinic satisfies the upper-class professional skills requirement. Enrolling in this Clinic will not disadvantage participants who wish to enroll in other law school clinics, either contemporaneously or subsequently.
  • LAW JD 830: Federal Habeas Corpus (S)
    This seminar explores federal court jurisdiction to entertain petitions for the writ of habeas corpus. Some attention will be given to habeas corpus as a means of challenging actions taken by the Federal Government in connection with national security and immigration. More attention will be given to habeas as the means by which state and federal prisoners attack criminal convictions and death sentences. The seminar should be of interest to students interested in the institutional role of federal courts in the United States, the relationship between federal courts and state courts, and the procedural mechanisms for adjudicating federal constitutional issues in criminal cases. Students who plan to practice criminal law, to handle capital litigation, or to clerk for federal judges will find the seminar especially valuable. ** A student who fails to attend the initial meeting of a seminar, or to obtain permission to be absent from either the instructor or the Registrar, will be administratively dropped from the seminar. Students who wait list for a seminar are required to attend the first seminar meeting to be considered for enrollment.
  • LAW JD 831: Evidence
    Practical and theoretical aspects of the rules of evidence. The purpose and policies underlying the evidentiary rules are stressed throughout in order to make the rules meaningful, predictable, and functional both for students interested in trial practice and for students who anticipate engaging in a more diversified practice. In addition to covering the substantive rules of evidence, the course demonstrates the significance of evidence as a tactical device at the trial and as a vital skill for the office lawyer. GRADING NOTICE: Judge Lowy's section will not offer the CR/NC/H option.
  • LAW JD 832: Energy Law & Policy (S)
    Energy law and policy are integral to the U.S. economy and have major impacts on the environment. This seminar will provide an overview of energy law and policy, primarily the U.S., with an emphasis on the sources and regulation of electric energy as well as the relative environmental consequences of different energy choices. We will pay particular attention to emerging alternative energy sources, e.g. wind, solar, biomass, as well as new technologies, e.g. horizontal fracking for the development of natural gas and energy storage. The seminar will involve the detailed study of several real life electric energy projects in order that students may gain a focused understanding of key federal energy and environmental laws, regulations and policies and learn how lawyers in the public, private and non-profit sector apply the law to a complex and changing set of facts. Students will have the opportunity to enhance their research, writing and oral presentation skills and receive detailed feedback. There are no prerequisites to the course other than a curious mind and interest in the subject matter. GRADING NOTICE: This course does not offer the CR/NC/H option. ** A student who fails to attend the initial meeting of a seminar (designated by an (S) in the title), or to obtain permission to be absent from either the instructor or the Registrar, may be administratively dropped from the seminar. Students who are on a wait list for a seminar are required to attend the first seminar meeting to be considered for enrollment.
  • LAW JD 833: Environmental Law
    This is an introductory survey course in environmental law. Topics include clean air, clean water, hazardous waste regulation and cleanup, and the protection of endangered species. Administrative Law is recommended but not required as a prerequisite.
  • LAW JD 834: Employment Discrimination and Employment Law
    The course focuses on race, sex, age, and disability employment discrimination prohibitions. Affirmative action, religious discrimination, constitutional protections of public sector workers, anti retaliation and whistleblower laws, and common law protection against arbitrary dismissals are also covered. Important procedural issues, including arbitration, are highlighted.
  • LAW JD 836: Federal Courts
    A basic survey course, covering the federal courts and their conduct of litigation concerning business regulation, environmental protection, and civil rights. This course picks up where the first year course in Civil Procedure leaves off and complements other courses on modern regulation and legal institutions: e.g., Administrative Law, Environmental Law, Labor Law, Conflict of Laws, and Constitutional Law. Topics include the prerequisites for gaining access to the federal district courts and the United States Supreme Court, the relationship between the federal courts and state courts, and "abstention" doctrines governing the exercise of federal judicial power. Especially recommended for students who plan to practice with firms that represent clients subject to federal regulation, to pursue careers with federal or state agencies and departments, or to handle constitutional, civil rights, or other public interest litigation.
  • LAW JD 837: Wrongful Convictions and the US Criminal Justice System (S)
    The past two decades have witnessed an unprecedented surge in the freeing from our nations jails and prisons of innocent people who were wrongfully convicted. Many have served lengthy sentences and some have spent years on death row awaiting execution for crimes they did not commit. This course will examine the broad range of factors that contribute to the wrongful conviction of the innocent and, in doing so, will shed light on broader questions about the functioning of the US criminal justice system. We will explore the role played by faulty eyewitness-identification procedures; coercive and deceptive police interrogation procedures; the mishandling of confidential informants, cooperating witnesses, and jailhouse snitches; junk science, disorganized crime labs, and incompetent and corrupt experts; police and prosecutorial failures to preserve & disclose exculpatory evidence; and incompetent defense counsel and underfunded criminal-defense-delivery systems. We will also examine the role of racial and ethnic bias, profiling, and tunnel vision, before considering how wrongful convictions affect the debate over the death penalty. We will look the use of postconviction procedures such as appeals, new-trial motions, and habeas corpus petitions, to free the wrongfully convicted. Finally, we will explore some of the reforms that have been proposed and some of the critiques -- from both the left and the right -- of the innocence movement, with its reliance on DNA technologies, and its narrow focus on the "wrong-man" notion of the "factually innocent." Films, case studies, and guest speakers will help ground our discussion in concrete examples. LIMITED WRITING REQUIREMENT OPTION: A limited number of students may be permitted to satisfy the upper-class writing requirement with the approval of the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs. ENROLLMENT LIMIT: 15 students. OFFERING PATTERN: This class is frequently offered in alternating years. Students are advised to take this into account when planning their long-term schedule. **A student who fails to attend the initial meeting of a seminar (designated by an (S) in the title), or to obtain permission to be absent from either the instructor or the Registrar, may be administratively dropped from the seminar. Students who are on a wait list for a seminar are required to attend the first seminar meeting to be considered for enrollment.
  • LAW JD 838: Antitrust Law
    Antitrust law regulates the competition between business firms in unregulated markets (and in varying degrees in regulated markets, where it supplies a benchmark standard). Thus, all privately owned economic entities are subject to or affected by the antitrust laws (federal or state), ranging from the largest multinationals to self-employed individuals, e.g., lawyers. Antitrust law constrains business behavior that injures the competitive process, encompassing such topics as price fixing, boycotts, monopolization, mergers, price discrimination, distributorship limitations and similar trade restrictions. Antitrust analysis is increasingly economic in its orientation and therefore economic analysis will form a vital part of the course. Supplementary economic readings are suggested for students without previous economic background (and for others who may wish to refresh their knowledge).