Courses

  • LAW JD 849: National Security & Technology: Law & Policy (S)
    This seminar explores how modern technology disrupts many of the customs and principles upon which our laws and institutions for national security have evolved. The advancement of modern technology is changing the nature of how we perceive and defend against security threats across all domains. Attacks can be launched in ways that national borders and other conventional defenses cannot easily stop, and the proliferation of privacy enhancing cryptographic tools provides virtual refuge for threat actors to congregate, coordinate and conspire. At the same time, the state has mobilized the use of new technologies--expanding, and indeed, redefining, surveillance capabilities--to predict, prevent and defend against threats in the modern era. This course will focus on a series of historical and contemporary challenges posed by a range of technologies to the government's administration of security and justice, and the solutions implemented or proposed by the state in response. The objective is to contextualize and deepen our understanding of the substantive and institutional questions that arise from the modern day "going dark" problem, in order to facilitate sound policy and good politics in areas that are devoid of law. Topics for discussion may include, but are not limited to: the use of cryptographic tools to evade government surveillance; government proposals for "backdoor" access to people's devices and data; the use of government hacking as a surveillance tool; and the use of machine learning to predict and prevent threat incidents. No technical knowledge is required. NOTES: This class does not satisfy the upper-class writing requirement. GRADING NOTICE: This class 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 850: Insurance Law
    The presence or absence of insurance is in many instances the single most important determinant of whether and how a tort or contracts action is litigated. This course focuses on both individual and commercial forms of insurance coverage. Students are introduced to the key insurance concepts of risk management, including the transfer, pooling and allocation of covered risks. Problems of contract interpretation, imperfect information, adverse selection and discrimination will be treated at length. Additionally, the class will take up issues particular to property, life, health, disability, liability and auto insurance. Finally, some time will be devoted to the state regulatory regimes designed to ensure solvency and profitability, and to the secondary market (i.e. reinsurance, and surplus and excess lines). A final exam is required.
  • LAW JD 851: Labor Law
    Survey of modern labor management and union relations law in the private sector. Organization of workers and the representation process; collective bargaining; unfair practices, employer and union; negotiation and enforcement of collective agreement, including arbitration; regulation of strikes and lockouts. Administrative law and federalism principles will be treated. Employment discrimination and other individual employee protection laws are not treated in this course.
  • LAW JD 852: Mutual Funds (Investment Companies)
    Investment companies have become an important part of the financial system. This course is designed to familiarize students with the special laws governing investment companies: their creation, structure, corporate governance, operations (including the distribution of shares and the management of the portfolios), dissolution and, time permitting, taxation. In particular, the course will focus on the Investment Company Act of 1940 and on the practice in this area before the Securities and Exchange Commission.
  • LAW JD 853: Employment Discrimination
    Comprehensive coverage of federal and state statutory anti-discrimination and accommodation laws governing employment. Federal statutes treated include Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Family Medical Leave Act, the Equal Pay Act, and section 1981. Constitutional equal protection law also will be treated where applicable. Topics include disparate treatment, disparate impact, systemic disparate treatment, harassment, retaliation, remedies, including affirmative action, and procedural choices. This course does not substantially overlap either Employment Law or Labor Law and can be taken in addition to those courses.
  • LAW JD 854: White Collar Crime
    The past several years have witnessed a number of high-profile white collar criminal prosecutions, including Arthur Andersen, Bernard Madoff, Jeffrey Skilling (Enron), and Ronald Blagojevich (former Illinois governor) to name a few. Developments continue, including the Supreme Court's reversal this year of former Virginia Governor Robert McConnell's bribery conviction and the upcoming Boston trial of the operators of New England Compounding Company. The purpose of this Course is to teach present-day "white collar crime" practice, including the elements of principal federal statutes and the special procedures followed by prosecutors. The course will review the theoretical bases of modern "white collar crime" prosecution, the major statutes in a prosecutor's "tool-box" (mail and wire fraud, securities fraud, health care fraud, bribery and extortion, obstruction of justice, RICO, and perjury) and procedural aspects of white collar crime (such as, grand jury process and sentencing). Students will learn significant and interesting recent cases and the prosecutorial and defensive techniques employed in white collar crime cases. Upon successful completion of the course, students will be familiar with the statutes, procedures, and methods of issue analysis employed by prosecutors and private lawyers in "white collar crime" practice. GRADING NOTICE: This course does not offer the CR/NC/H option. OFFERING PATTERN: This class not offered every year. Students are advised to take this into account when planning their long-term schedule.
  • LAW JD 856: Health Law
    This course teaches the substantive and procedural laws relating to the US health care sector, including public and private insurance, the structure and regulation of health care providers, tax-exempt health care institutions, health care fraud and abuse, competition in health care markets, duties to patients, regulation of the beginning and end of life, and health privacy. We focus on both federal and state law (and the federalism issues raised thereby). Texts include case law, statutes, regulations, other administrative guidance, and peer-reviewed literature from medicine and the social sciences.
  • LAW JD 857: Intellectual Property
    This course explores how the law deals with the products of creative activity. The range of subject matter is large, embracing things as different as mechanical inventions and melodies; baubles and boat designs; catalogues, computers and cartoons. Among the areas of potential coverage are federal copyright law, federal trademark law, state law theories of unfair competition, trade secret law, patent law, state rights of publicity, and misappropriation. Also considered will be whether federal law should preempt the efforts of state judges and legislatures to regulate intellectual products.
  • LAW JD 858: International Trade Regulation: A Transatlantic Perspective (S)
    The first half of this seminar surveys the origins and development of the WTO, with emphasis on the WTO legal process and its interaction with U.S. trade agencies. It explores the philosophical underpinnings of free trade and its impact on developed, developing, and least developed countries. Each session compares U.S. and EU approaches to trade regulation. Meanwhile, in consultation with the instructor and Law Library staff, students develop individual research projects and produce thick outlines. The second half of the semester is devoted to students' presentations of their work in progress. A polished paper is expected of each student by the end of the exam period. Shorter response papers may also be required. A limited number of second-year law students will be allowed to satisfy the upper-class writing requirement through this seminar with the instructor's approval (first come, first served). GRADING NOTICE: This class does not offer the CR/NC/H option.
  • LAW JD 859: Immigrants' Rights and Human Trafficking Clinic: Fieldwork (C)
    Graduate Prerequisites: OR CO-REQ: INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY, COPYRIGHT, PATENT LAW, OR PERMISSION OF INSTRUCTOR.
    THIS CLASS IS RESTRICTED to students who have formally applied to and been accepted to the Immigrants' Rights and Human Trafficking Program. Students have three fieldwork options: (1) concentration in immigrants' rights; (2) concentration in human trafficking; or (3) work on both types of cases. Students focusing on immigrants' rights will represent adult and children asylum seekers and other vulnerable noncitizens with the opportunity to litigate an immigration case in the Boston Immigration Court. Students focusing on anti-trafficking work will represent survivors of labor and sex trafficking in a wide range of civil matters and engage in policy-related work to address gaps in the local and national landscape. Students focusing on both immigrants' rights and human trafficking will represent immigrant clients and survivors of human trafficking in a range of civil matters. All students will have the opportunity to engage in immigrants' rights and human trafficking work through "Know-Your-Rights" visits at the local jail/detention center and by conducting intake at the Family Justice Center for human trafficking survivors. Students, working in pairs, assume the primary responsibility for multiple clients' complex cases, from start to finish. Students conduct client interviews, track down witnesses, speak with experts, develop documentary, testimonial and expert evidence, and write legal briefs. The clinical supervisors prepare students for their cases through weekly supervision meetings, mid-semester and final individual meetings, and mock hearings, as appropriate. NOTE: The Immigrants' Rights and Human Trafficking Program satisfies the upper-class professional skills requirement and counts towards the 6 credit Experiential Learning requirement. PRE/CO-REQUISITE: Evidence. GRADING NOTICE: This course does not offer the CR/NC/H option.
  • LAW JD 861: Civil Litigation Program (C)
    THIS CLASS IS RESTRICTED to students who have formally applied to and been accepted to the Civil Litigation Program. Student in the Civil Litigation Program handle their own case loads, representing indigent clients in civil cases under the supervision of clinical faculty. Students may participate in the Program for either a full year (the Housing, Employment, Family and Disability Clinic (HEFD)) or for one semester (the Employment Rights Clinic (ERC)). Students participating in the HEFD Clinic work on cases in areas such as domestic relations, eviction defense, employment law and Social Security appeals. Students in the ERC represent clients in unemployment compensation cases, with a possibility of working on wage and hour disputes, discrimination/sexual harassment cases, and Family Medical Leave Act cases. PRE/CO-REQUISITES: Evidence. NOTE: The Civil Litigation Program satisfies the upper-class professional skills requirement and counts towards the 6 credit Experiential Learning requirement. GRADING NOTICE: This course does not offer the CR/NC/H option.
  • LAW JD 862: Client Counseling (S)
    The purpose of this seminar is to provide students with the opportunity to develop client counseling skills needed to deal with a wide variety of clients and their various legal problems. The focus of the seminar is on foundational skills necessary to successfully work with clients in identifying client interests and goals at the outset of a matter, and in discussing and analyzing strategic options and new developments as matters progress. This seminar is designed for students to learn by engaging in mock client counseling interviews and other group exercises. Accordingly, much of the time will be filled with practice interviews and discussion of strategies for how to navigate client interviews and meetings. ENROLLMENT LIMIT: 12 students. NOTES: This seminar does not satisfy the upper-class writing requirement. This class satisfies the upper-class Professional Skills requirement and counts toward the 6 credit Experiential Learning requirement. ** 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 863: Administrative Law II
    Graduate Prerequisites: ADMINISTRATIVE LAW
    Administrative Law II is designed for students who have had the first year required course in Administrative Law, or its equivalent. In addition to some review of Administrative Law basics, this course will go into depth on subjects not covered in the first year course including the availability of judicial review (standing, ripeness, mootness and reviewability), adjudication, freedom of information, open meetings requirements, pre-emption of state law, licensing and ratemaking procedure and government liability under the Federal Tort Claims Act. There will also be in depth coverage of some issues covered in the first year course such as statutory interpretation methodology in the administrative state, the place of administrative agencies in the government and standards of judicial review including Chevron and its alternatives. PREREQUISITE: Administrative Law.
  • LAW JD 864: Financial Regulation
    This course will survey the regulatory architecture of major U.S. financial institutions, including commercial banks, investment banks, hedge funds, mutual funds, and insurance companies. Understanding the regulatory framework surrounding financial institutions requires situating them within a rapidly evolving political, technological and global context. The course will explore various regulatory mechanisms, such as bank supervision, security disclosures, fiduciary duties, consumer protections, capital requirements, and risk monitoring. The design of these complex governance tools has important implications for the health and stability of the economy, and thus for society. Attendance at the Graduate Program in Banking and Financial Law's three-day program, "Financial Services Basics," is highly recommended. PREREQUISITE: Business Fundamentals. GRADING NOTICE: This class does not offer the CR/NC/H option.
  • LAW JD 866: Technology & Cyberlaw Clinic: Seminar 1
    THIS CLASS IS RESTRICTED to students who have formally applied to and been accepted to the Technology and Cyberlaw Clinic. This is the fall classroom component to the Technology & Cyberlaw Clinic. The seminar introduces students to the lawyering skills (including interviewing, counseling, negotiation, drafting, etc.) that will help them in counseling client innovators. From a substantive legal perspective, the course will likely involve an in-depth study of statutes, case law, and scholarly articles addressing law and technology issues, including advanced topics in intellectual property, computer crimes, and data privacy. NOTE: The Technology & Cyberlaw Clinic satisfies the upper-class professional skills requirement and counts towards the 6 credit Experiential Learning requirement. GRADING NOTICE: This course does not offer the CR/NC/H option.
  • LAW JD 868: Moot Court
    The second component of the First Year Research and Writing requirement is participation in the J. Newton Esdaile Appellate Moot Court Program in the spring semester. Students conduct research, draft a brief and present a case in oral argument before a panel of moot-court judges made up of faculty, lawyers and students.
  • LAW JD 869: Technology & Cyberlaw Clinic: Seminar 2
    THIS CLASS IS RESTRICTED to students who have formally applied to and been accepted to the Technology and Cyberlaw Clinic. This is the spring classroom component to the Technology & Cyberlaw Clinic. The seminar expands upon the lawyering skills and substantive legal discussions from the first semester, and will focus on questions of national policy as they relate to technology, including national control over technical information, academic privacy and freedom, and emerging cybersecurity regulation. NOTE: The Technology & Cyberlaw Clinic satisfies the upper-class professional skills requirement and counts towards the 6 credit Experiential Learning requirement. GRADING NOTICE: This course does not offer the CR/NC/H option.
  • LAW JD 870: Patent Law
    The basic questions in patent law are: why should society permit the grant of an exclusive property right in information relating to an invention? Who should be given the right? What is the scope of the right? How should the right be enforced? What disclosure duties should be placed on the patent holder? We will concentrate on these legal issues without getting mired in discussions of the technical details of particular inventions. Students without a technical background are welcome and encouraged to enroll.
  • LAW JD 871: Trusts, Wills & Basic Estate Planning
    Professor Seipp's Section: This course explores the basic law surrounding the disposition of property at death: (1) overview of the estate planning process and the policy considerations regarding inheritance law; (2) the process by which property is distributed in the absence of a will (intestacy); (3) the law of wills, examining formal requirements for the execution of a valid will, revocation, challenges to a will, and construction; (4) will substitutes and planning for incapacity; (5) the law of trusts, including revocable and pour-over trusts, creditor and beneficiary rights, and spendthrift trusts; (6) powers of appointment, perpetuities, and brief coverage of charitable trusts. This course does not address in detail tax-motivated estate planning. Professor Hurwitz's Section: This course explores the basic law surrounding the disposition of property at death: (1) overview of the estate planning process and the policy considerations regarding inheritance law; (2) the process by which property is distributed in the absence of a will (intestacy); (3) the law of wills, examining challenges to a will, formal requirements for the execution of a valid will, revocation, and construction; (4) will substitutes and planning for incapacity; (5) the law of trusts, including revocable and pour-over trusts, and creditor and beneficiary rights; (6) brief coverage of powers of appointment, perpetuities, spendthrift, and charitable trusts. This course does not address in detail tax-motivated estate planning.
  • LAW JD 872: Financial Reporting for Lawyers
    Understanding financial statements and reports. The objective of the course is that students will be able to read and understand the four financial statements and the 10-k annual report. Emphasis is placed on understanding the nature and meaning of the reports, as well as the relationship to the underlying transactions. Other topics include: basic accounting principles, US GAAP versus IFRS, financial statement analysis, the relationship of the financial statement information to covenant documents, and accounting gamesmanship. RESTRICTION: Not open to students who have had more than one three-hour college course, or its equivalent, in accounting. GRADING NOTICE: This class does not offer the CR/NC/H option.