Courses

The listing of a course description here does not guarantee a course’s being offered in a particular semester. Please refer to the published schedule of classes on the MyBU Student Portal for confirmation a class is actually being taught and for specific course meeting dates and times.

  • LAW JD 989: Jessup Moot Court: Problem Solving in International Law
    This course is restricted to students who applied and were accepted as participants for the Jessup Moot Court competition. A full description can be found here: https://www.bu.edu/law/current-students/jd-student-resources/legal-writing-appellate-advocacy-programs/appellate-advocacy-program-competitions/jessup-moot-court-competition/ NOTE: This class satisfies the upper-class Professional Skills requirement and counts toward the 6 credit Experiential Learning requirement.
  • LAW JD 991: International Human Rights (S)
    This is an introductory seminar to international human rights law. The class will introduce students to the concepts of human rights, and the legal texts that have codified and provided content to those concepts in the last seventy years. The class aims to work at three levels: to examine the role of human rights (law) in history and politics; to analyze the doctrine of international human rights law; to introduce key areas of current and future human rights practice. We will accordingly look at the historical evolution and political role of human rights law, and ask whether there is such a thing as universal human rights, or whether the concepts are dependent on specific regions, cultures and political systems. We will look at the key institutions and mechanisms, at the global and regional level, for the monitoring and enforcement of human rights law. We will analyze the law on specific rights (for example the right to life, the prohibition of torture, the right to self-determination) as well as in specific contexts and themes (for example human rights and climate change; business and human rights) to understand the reach and function of human rights law in the international system. UPPER-CLASS WRITING REQUIREMENT: A limited number of students may use this class to satisfy the 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 992: Foreign Relations Law
    This course will introduce the framework of constitutional, statutory, and international law that both authorizes and constrains the conduct of U.S. foreign affairs. After studying the constitutional allocation of foreign affairs powers among the branches of the federal government and the foundations of the government's national security powers, the course will turn to discrete topics of contemporary relevance, including the power and limits of judicial authority in foreign affairs; treaties and other international agreements; customary international law's status in the U.S. legal system; foreign affairs powers retained by the several states; the application of the Constitution to persons and incidents abroad; war powers; covert action; the detention, interrogation, and trial of terrorists and other irregular combatants, before courts and military commissions; targeted killing; torture and other coercive interrogation; and the protection of individual liberties and civil rights in wartime. Grading will be based on a twenty-four hour take-home final. RESTRICTION: Students who have previously enrolled in National Security Law (JD890) may not register for this course.
  • LAW JD 998: Health Care Transactions (S)
    Partners, associates and general counsel from leading firms will discuss the deals they were personally involved in. After an introduction to the regulatory context of health care and health care transactional theory, the course will turn to case studies of 8 complex health care transactions, drawing on actual documents and the experience of practitioners who worked on the deals. The transactions include hospital M&A, joint ventures, clinical affiliations, and others. Students will analyze the deal and present your conclusions to the class, with the lawyers who closed it. Case law related to the legal issues presented by the transaction will be presented and discussed. Students also will complete two assignments: one considering the fiduciary obligations of a non-profit board of directors, and one writing exercise drawn from class materials. We also will review and discuss a term sheet for the acquisition of a home health agency by a hospital system. PREREQUISITE/COREQUISITE: Health Law. UPPER-CLASS WRITING REQUIREMENT: This class may not be used to satisfy the 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 999: Deals (S)
    This seminar provides an overview and introduction to the structure of complex transactions and contracts -- deals - and the role effective counsel can play. We will review challenges and issues common to complex business transactions with a focus on risk identification, allocation and mitigation. We will also review how that impacts deal negotiations, documentation and execution. The course is divided into two parts. The first section will be a review and analysis of a Series A funding round based on the National Venture Capital Association form agreements. The first section will conclude with a take home project to be done individually. The second part will be a review and analysis of a transaction involving a public company. The class is organized into teams and each team will prepare and present an analysis of one of the participants. Each team will present its analysis to the class. PREREQUISITE: Corporations. UPPER-CLASS WRITING REQUIREMENT: This class may not be used to satisfy the 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 LE 650: U.S. Legal Discourse
    This course will assist students in developing the communication skills necessary to succeed in BU Law's LLM programs and international legal practice. Students in the course will acquire effective reading strategies, enhance vocabulary skills, practice listening, write persuasively using appropriate grammar and revise work based on instructor feedback, and develop oral fluency and accuracy and hone pronunciation. Students will work on expanding general skills using course materials that cover many topics including current policy and legal issues in the U.S., the American legal system, and how history and social issues have shaped the American legal system. Students will also be challenged to think critically, a key skill for future law students and lawyers.
  • LAW LE 651: Academic Skills for U.S. Law Studies
    This course will cover the study skills and strategies needed to succeed in an English-language law program in the United States. The focus will be on strengthening study skills and listening and speaking effectively. Students will work on listening strategies that will help them to handle lectures and discussions from various disciplines, including taking coherent notes and writing summaries of and responses to complex questions about the listenings. Students will also work on speaking strategies that will allow them to participate fully in academic life at law school, including interacting with classmates and professors, participating in class discussions, and giving effective oral presentations.
  • LAW LE 652: Introduction to U.S. Legal Culture
    This course will provide a foundational understanding of general American legal concepts, history, culture, and profession, including professional responsibility. Students will engage in reading and classroom discussion of assigned materials (consisting of cases, articles, fiction, excerpts, etc) that will be supplemented by field trips to state and federal courts and other relevant venues.
  • LAW LE 653: Legal Reasoning and Analysis
    This course will assist students in developing legal reasoning and analysis skills necessary to succeed in BU Law's LL.M. programs. Students will learn how language works in legal decisions; how to read and interpret those judicial decisions and apply them to complex hypotheticals using analogical and rule-based reasoning. Through this process students will develop academic and legal vocabulary, conversation and presentation skills, and strengthen reading comprehension. Students will also build skills for taking notes and writing summaries of readings and lectures, writing clearly, making arguments, and using appropriate word choice, grammar, style and format for American law school assignments.
  • LAW LE 654: Legal Writing
    In this course students practice the basic principles of good legal writing by: 1) practicing reading and briefing cases; 2) understanding how to derive rules of law from common law cases and to be able to apply legal precedent to new factual scenarios; 3) developing an understanding of basic mechanics of legal citations and how to use citations to support legal propositions; 4) learning the "IRAC" structure that is employed for legal writing including fact patterns on law exams, memoranda and client correspondence; 5) understanding the various forms of legal correspondence and to develop proficiency drafting client correspondence.
  • LAW LE 655: Persuasive Legal Advocacy
    Designed as a complement to the Legal Writing class, this course will develop students' persuasive advocacy skills through hands-on practice in oral and written communication, including effective presentation, listening, and writing skills. Through simulations and role plays, it will train students in the art of effective advocacy. This course will focus on three major projects: (1) a law partnership negotiation, contract and presentation; (2) client counseling and written communications; and (3) a full-scale mock trial.
  • LAW LE 656: Topics in American Law
    This course introduces students to foundational legal topics in order to develop the ability to analyze case law, participate actively in class and group discussions, and to synthesize legal principles in a common law approach. Topics include contracts law, property and intellectual property law, civil procedure, and other commercial and constitutional issues.
  • LAW LE 661: International Contracts and Negotiations
    English is predominantly the language of international legal practice and its importance to lawyers cannot be over-emphasized. The way in which one uses legal English can therefore be crucial to professional success. This course provides students with the opportunity to build on language skills in the professional context through realistic legal scenarios and materials prepared by qualified lawyers. After completing this class, students will feel more confident in their ability to negotiate and draft formal international business agreements in English. They will also gain a working knowledge of 'real-life' business law and practice - all in the context of improving one's ability to use legal business English.
  • LAW TX 901: Federal Income Taxation I
    This course presents a general introduction to the fundamentals of federal income tax, emphasizing issues common to individual taxpayers (but not including the federal income tax aspects of the acquisition, ownership, and disposition of property, which are the subject of Federal Income Taxation II). Topics include an overview of the federal tax system; gross income, inclusions, and exclusions; identity of the proper taxpayer; concepts and categories of deductions; and basic timing principles.
  • LAW TX 902: Federal Income Taxation II
    Federal income tax aspects of the acquisition, ownership, and disposition of property. Topics include: 1.Realization and recognition, 2.Basis and amount realized, 3.The effects of debt (including its cancellation), 4.Depreciation and amortization, 5.At risk, not for profit, and passive activity loss deductibility limitations, 6.Capital gains and losses, related party transactions, quasi-capital assets and depreciation recapture, and 7.Deferred payment transactions (original issue discount and installment sales). Prerequisite or corequisite: Federal Income Taxation I.
  • LAW TX 904: Estate and Gift Taxation
    Principle issues of estate and gift taxation. Topics include the definition of taxable gifts and exclusions and deductions; determination of the taxable estate of a decedent including problems with lifetime transfers; valuation issues; deductions from the taxable estate with special emphasis on property passing to a spouse; and transfers with retained interests. Reference is made throughout to planning issues relating to estate and gift taxation and is designed to give both a requisite background for those intending additional study of estate planning and a comfortable familiarity with the subject for those going on to other tax fields.
  • LAW TX 905: ERISA Regulation of Retirement Plans
    This course provides an introduction to the regulation of retirement plans, focusing on the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 ("ERISA"). Specifically, the course will cover public policy implications, the different types of retirement plans subject to regulation including the unintended rise of the defined contribution plan or 401(k), state versus federal regulation of plans, application of the Internal Revenue Code, ERISA's fiduciary duties and prohibited transaction rules, and civil enforcement in the courts, as well as by the Internal Revenue Service and the Department of Labor. The course will be relevant for any student interested in employee benefits, employment law, labor law, business law, or securities law.
  • LAW TX 906: Tax Aspects of International Business
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: TX 901
    Undergraduate Corequisites: TX 901
    Tax aspects of international business transactions, both "inbound" and "outbound", with particular attention to fiscal jurisdiction, the foreign tax credit, allocation of income among affiliated companies, treaties, anti-abuse measures aimed at tax haven operations, information reporting and foreign investment in U.S. securities and real estate. Prerequisite or corequisite: Federal Income Taxation I.
  • LAW TX 907: Tax Practice & Procedure
    Structure of the U.S. tax system; administration of the Internal Revenue Code by the Internal Revenue Service; ethics of tax practice and the regulation of tax practitioners; study of the administrative processing of tax returns; handling of audits, statutes of limitations, assessment of deficiencies and penalties, claims for refund, hearings before the Appeals Office, closing agreement, tax liens, tax collection procedures and civil and criminal aspects of tax fraud. Introduction to aspects of litigation in the Federal District Court, U.S. Court of Federal Claims, and U.S. Tax Court.
  • LAW TX 913: Tax Law of Accounting Methods
    Examination of a broad range of subjects related to accounting methods and periods. Topics include principles of income recognition, prepaid income, claim of right, cash equivalency, and constructive receipt, special methods involving long-term contracts, depreciation, timing of deductions, estimated expenses, prepaid expense, expense versus capitalization, and conformity between tax and financial accounting. Prerequisite or corequisite: Federal Income Taxation I.