PreTrial Litigation

B564 is taught by A. Tanford

In today#s litigation world, where only a minute fraction of civil cases actually go to trial, litigators devote the vast bulk of their time and effort to pretrial proceedings. Thus, cases are typically #won# or #lost# during the pretrial practice stage, not during the trial itself. Moreover, even in the few cases that go to trial, effective pretrial preparation is the key to putting your client in the best position for success.

This course will address those pretrial aspects of civil litigation # from pleadings through summary judgment and settlement negotiations. We will look in detail at the real-world issues that arise in pretrial litigation, with the goal of understanding best litigation practices to achieve the most favorable outcome for the client. The course will involve real life, practical tips provided by practitioners, as well as a strong emphasis on the litigation rules that govern these proceedings.

Throughout the course, students will be presented with practical problems that require the application of litigation skills as well as an understanding of litigation fundamentals. Students will work individually or in small groups. Grades are based on individual and group work product, not an exam. Evidence is suggested but not required.