Juris Doctor

  • 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 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. NOTE: This class may be used to satisfy the 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 825: Election Law
    This course examines the law that organizes democratic processes of election and decision-making. After considering the historical struggle for minority enfranchisement and the Supreme Court's first forays into redistricting and reapportionment, we move to more contemporary topics. Among those topics are campaign-finance law (with special attention to the recent Citizens United decision), the connection of race and political participation under the Voting Rights Act, the Supreme Court's decision in Bush v. Gore, the constitutional role and rights of political parties (which the Constitution's framers omitted from mention and distrusted as "factions"), and the constitutionality of partisan and bipartisan gerrymandering. A take-home examination and active participation in class discussion are required.
  • 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 class 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, 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)
    THIS CLASS IS RESTRICTED to students who have formally applied to and been accepted to the Wrongful Convictions Clinic. Students 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. Students meet bi-weekly with the clinic instructor and can expect to spend five hours per week on clinic work. Case work typically continues through the full year, however, if investigation of the prisoner's case finishes earlier, the clinic work will end at that time. Students receive one pass/fail credit for each full semester of participation, with the fall grade deferred until the work is completed. Hours spent on clinic work in the spring semester that do not receive credit may be counted towards the School's Pro Bono Pledge. In addition to their fieldwork the clinic will meet at a mutually agreed upon date and time based on the schedules of all enrolled students. NOTES: This Clinic satisfies the upper-class Professional Skills requirement and counts towards the 6 credit Experiential Learning requirement.
  • 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 U.S. energy law and policy with an emphasis on the sources and regulation of electric energy. 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. We will consider the division of regulatory authority among federal, state, and local governments. Students will have the opportunity to enhance their research, writing, and oral presentation skills and receive detailed feedback. There are no pre-requisites to the course other than a curious mind and interest in the subject matter. LIMITED WRITING REQUIREMENT: A limited number of students may elect to use this course to fulfill the upper-class writing 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 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 Law
    This course will provide a comprehensive overview of the legal regulation of employment in the U.S. We will study the at-will default rule (and many of its modifications) as well as tort protections for employees, speech and privacy protections, and workplace disputes about property rights (specifically trade secrets and non-compete agreements). We will also review the basic requirements of wage and hour law and workplace safety regulations. Finally, we evaluate the efficacy of workplace misconduct investigations, layoff management and employment practices liability coverage. There are no prerequisites for this course and students may opt to write a 30 page research paper in lieu of a 3 hour final examination if they wish.
  • LAW JD 835: Jurisprudence: Contemporary Controversies Over Law & Morality (S)
    This seminar will examine some classic issues of jurisprudence as they arise in contemporary controversies over law and morality. Topics will include the following: * The legal enforcement of morals. In Lawrence v. Texas, which recognized a right of gays and lesbians to intimate association, Justice Scalia protested in dissent that the case "effectively decrees the end of all morals legislation." Is Scalia right that there is really no distinction between homosexual intimate association and, to quote Scalia's list, "fornication, bigamy, adultery, adult incest, bestiality, and obscenity"? What are the proper limits on moral disapproval as a justification for traditional "morals legislation"? * Government's role in promoting public values: conflicts between liberty and equality. To what extent may government inculcate civic virtues and promote public values? We will focus on conflicts between personal liberty (including religious liberty) and the use of antidiscrimination law to secure the status of equal citizenship for gays and lesbians. For example, should laws recognizing same-sex marriage grant religious exemptions to town clerks and business people who morally disapprove of such marriage? * Grounds for justifying rights: protecting freedom to choose versus promoting moral goods. What are the best grounds for justifying rights in circumstances of moral disagreement? For example, should we justify a right to same-sex marriage on the ground that government should respect people's freedom to choose whom to marry? Or instead on the ground that protecting such a right promotes moral goods (the same moral goods that opposite-sex marriage furthers): commitment, intimacy, fidelity, and the like. * Rights, responsibilities, and regulation. To what extent does the protection of rights preclude governmental encouragement of responsible exercise of rights or regulation to protect others from harm? We will examine such issues in the context of reproductive freedom and the individual right to bear arms. * Originalisms versus moral readings of the Constitution. To what extent does constitutional interpretation involve determining the original meaning of the Constitution as a matter of historical fact (originalisms) versus making moral and philosophic judgments about the best understanding of our constitutional commitments (moral readings)? We will explore the emergence of "new originalisms" that aim to justify certain controversial rights that conventional originalists like Justice Scalia have rejected. ** 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 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).
  • LAW JD 839: First Amendment
    This course will examine the free speech, free exercise and establishment clauses of the First Amendment. About two-thirds of the course will focus on speech, including such topics as political speech (including campaign finance regulation), commercial speech, and expression in the public forum. The final one-third of the course will focus on religion, including such topics as freedom of religious practice, religion in schools, and religious displays and symbols.
  • LAW JD 841: Supervised Research & Writing
    Upper-class students may pursue a special research interest under the guidance of a full time faculty member, and earn one or two semester credits for a Supervised Research and Writing project (also known as an Independent Study). The study must involve a substantial investment of time and effort, and result in significant written work that reflects a high standard of legal scholarship. The student's final grade will be based solely upon written work submitted, and will be included in the student's average. NOTE: Students must register for Supervised Research and Writing directly with the Registrar's Office. You may not register via the Student Link.
  • LAW JD 842: International Business Transactions
    This course is designed to give students a broad overview of the law--domestic, foreign, and international--governing international business transactions. With the significant growth in international commerce and trade, and the forces of economic and social globalization, lawyers will increasingly confront international legal issues during their professional careers. This course will focus on the legal problems encountered in business ventures that cross national borders. Topics include formation of contracts, choice of law, financing the international sale of goods through letters of credit, regulation of international trade, the organizations and operations of the institutions of the World Trade Organization, foreign investment, international dispute settlement, and international transfer of intellectual property. GRADING NOTICE: This course does not offer the CR/NC/H option.
  • LAW JD 843: Int'l Human Rights Clinic: Human Rights Advocacy (S)
    THIS CLASS IS RESTRICTED to students who have formally applied to and been accepted to the International and Human Rights Clinic. This is the companion spring classroom component for students in the Clinic. The course focuses on further developing skills directly tied to students' ongoing fieldwork. Classes will cover: interviewing and counseling institutional (non-governmental organizations) clients; designing and implementing human rights field research; ethical pitfalls and professional 'best practices' in human rights collaborations with international networks; advocacy within the UN machinery; advocacy within selected regional human rights mechanisms; and in-depth research workshops using comparative and foreign human rights research problems. The classes will be a combination of readings and discussion; simulations; student presentations; short papers and case rounds to discuss project work; and group and individual feedback on project development. NOTE: The International Human Rights 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 846: Historical Perspectives on Law, Constitutions and Culture (S)
    This workshop-format seminar examines the interplay of law, constitutions, and culture from an historical perspective. The heart of the seminar is student engagement with works-in-progress by leading scholars in the history, theory, and culture of law, broadly understood. The first three class sessions will be devoted to developing the intellectual tools necessary for reading and engaging with such papers. Starting in week 4 of the semester, the class format will alternate between workshop sessions and more traditional seminar sessions. During the five workshop sessions, an invited scholar will present a current scholarly work-in-progress for discussion. Students will read the speaker's paper in advance and prepare discussion questions for the seminar. During the other sessions, the class will meet as a normal seminar, during which we will discuss readings related to the workshop papers and legal history more generally. The written work for the seminar will consist of a series of brief, critical essays in response to a student-selected subset of the workshop papers. LIMITED WRITING REQUIREMENT OPTION: A limited number of students may be permitted to satisfy the upper-class writing with this seminar. NOTE: This course is open to law students and to graduate students from other departments. A background in history is not a prerequisite. Graduate students from outside the law school may be able to receive 4 credits for this course. Please consult the professor regarding this 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 848: Democracy & the Rule of Law (S)
    This seminar will explore the history, origins, and principal theories of democratic government, with a particular focus on the meaning and role of the rule of law. Topics within this rubric may include social contract theory; U.S. Constitutional, parliamentary, and alternative forms of democracy; the economic, social, and cultural prerequisites for democracy; the role of social norms, ideology, and civic virtue in the functioning and persistence of democratic polities; conceptions of the rule of law and individual rights within the framework of majoritarian government; the influence of disparate power and wealth; democracy promotion and the putative emerging right to democratic governance in international law; contemporary challenges to democracy; and the future of democracy. Class participation, periodic reaction papers, and a term paper will be required. NOTE: A limited number of students will be permitted to satisfy the upper-class writing requirement with this seminar. GRADING NOTICE: This class will 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 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.