The Mock Trial Team consists of an elite group of law students trained in the art of trial-level litigation. Each year, team members represent the Florida State University College of Law in competitions against other students from law schools across the nation. At these competitions, team members present cases before judge and jury. Cases encompass a wide range of topics in both the civil and criminal arenas. Case topics have included insurance fraud, homicide, intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligence and wrongful death.
Students from each of the three law classes are represented on the team. First-year students can try out during spring semester. Several students compete for acceptance onto the team, but only 16 outstanding advocates are selected. New members enter a rigorous training program designed to teach proper courtroom demeanor, hone their presentation abilities and sharpen their legal reasoning skills. The process includes seminars, practice trials, an intramural competition and a trial practice class specifically designed for team members and taught by a renowned trial attorney. By the end of the fall of their second year, members are ready to be unleashed in a fury of trial advocacy excellence.
Competition groups normally include two teams of four. The two teams practice against each other countless times before a competition. In actual competition, each team advocates for both sides of the case, requiring the teams to be well-versed in the strengths and weaknesses of their own case as well as those of their opponents. The teams are coached by a select group of local trial attorneys, judges and professors. In addition "guest judges" and "guest jurors" also are invited from the law school and local legal community to offer fresh perspectives during the development of the case. The combined years of skill and expertise represented by the coaches is indispensable, and their diverse knowledge provides a learning experience that is unmatched.
The Florida State University College of Law Mock Trial Team invites you to explore its proud history and current success on the following pages. Our hope is that you, too, will catch the fever and join our ranks.