There are no required courses or restricted or unrestricted electives. It is expected, however, that students will take at least 16 credits from the courses specifically designated as Business Law Courses.
Business Law Courses:
A study of the legislative, executive, and judicial control of administrative action. The course includes discussion of formal and informal administrative processes, the opportunity to be heard, adequacy of notice, restrictions on the deciding body, and appellate review.
A study of the law of the sea, including admiralty jurisdiction, maritime liens, limitation of liability, collision, towage, charter parties, and the rights of injured maritime workers and passengers.
This seminar will cover the major debates in corporate law scholarship and policy, such as whether corporations should maximize profits or consider social welfare, whether corporations are distinct entities or just a nexus of relationships among various economic actors, and whether stock options are a valuable or detrimental form of executive compensation, among others.
Examination of the alternative dispute resolution movement and techniques for incorporating it into your legal practice. A variety of readings and exercises are used as background for discussions of the utility of different mechanisms for resolving certain kinds of disputes. This course focuses on adjudication, negotiation, and mediation. The class includes opportunities to be involved in role-play simulations and to discuss the efficacy of these techniques with experienced professionals.
More information coming soon!
A study of judicial decisions construing and applying the federal antitrust laws ( i.e., Sherman, Clayton, Robinson-Patman, and Federal Trade Commission Acts) to the control of the competitive process in the American economy.
A comprehensive study of the legal principles governing the relationship of debtors and creditors, with primary emphasis on federal bankruptcy law and focus on the rights of unsecured creditors. Traditional state remedies such as attachment, garnishment, execution, fraudulent conveyance and debtors' exemptions also are covered.
This course introduces students to the key legal principles governing the relationship of debtors and creditors, with primary emphasis on federal bankruptcy law.
This interdisciplinary seminar critically examines the “rational actor” model of legal decision making (proposed by classical economic theorists) in light of the work of social and cognitive psychology. This course will examine cutting-edge empirical and experimental research and will challenge the descriptive assumptions that underlie legal doctrine in a variety of areas, including criminal law, contracts, torts, corporate law, administrative law, and the rules of evidence and procedure.
Topics include, but are not limited to: (1) how moral and social norms interact with legal rules to influence behavior (and whether they should); (2) how cognitive biases affect a party’s ability to bargain efficiently for goods; (3) the psychological factors that guide decisions regarding whether and how much to punish wrongdoers; (4) the power that group dynamics exert on board members in corporate decision making; and (5) whether the traditional “law and economics” approach to tort law fits with psychological research on risk. Grades will be based on a presentation and research paper.
The goal of this course is to develop the ability of prospective lawyers to recognize and handle professional responsibility issues that arise in the practice of business law. For purposes of this course, “business law” includes general business associations law and related specializations such as tax, securities, antitrust, litigation, and “white collar” criminal law. By the end of this course, prospective lawyers should (1) know the sources of governing ethical rules, (2) know the contents of the principal relevant rules, (3) recognize the difficulties attending application of the rules, including the sometimes conflicting policies served by the rules, (4) understand the importance of the particular context at hand when applying the rules, and (5) appreciate the different cultures and priorities of the relevant actors, including regulators, inside and outside counsel, and business persons contemplating or engaged in the transactions.
This clinic will give students opportunities to develop skills in key business law topics by providing service to clients starting or operating entrepreneurial businesses. Initially, the target client base will be limited to FSU faculty, staff, and student led enterprises and preference will be given to clients seeking to commercialize “University IP.” Students will work on a variety of legal issues typically of importance to entrepreneurs including:
- selecting forms for and establishing business entities;
- working with founders to formalize relations among them;
- negotiating and drafting IP related agreements; and,
- general contract issues such as independent contractor relations, real property leases, etc.
This online, asynchronous course will help students develop the sophisticated research skills necessary for the effective practice of business law, including the ability to efficiently research issues concerning business formation and regulation. Students will explore business topics using secondary and primary sources, including databases, treatises, practice materials, and materials produced by law firms.
This course explores the most common issues faced by small and medium-sized businesses and the lawyers representing them. Issues that typically will be addressed include: choosing the right form (corporation, partnership, LLC) for the business, organizing and funding the enterprise, converting from one form to another, and purchase and sale of businesses. Additional issues that may be addressed may include: buy-sell provisions, employment agreements, compensation planning, insurance, diversification, and estate, asset protection, and transition planning. Both tax and non-tax aspects are considered. No prerequisites. Previous or concurrent enrollment in Corporations, Closely-Held Business Organizations, and Taxation desirable but not required.
Prerequisites: Civil Procedure, Evidence
This is an interactive skills based course designed to assist students in developing critical thinking skills while learning winning strategies related to the discovery process. Students will be given a mock case scenario and will be assigned a position of plaintiff or defendant. They will decide how to approach the discovery process using all the tools in the tool box including admissions, document requests, interrogatories, subpoena duces tecum, depositions, etc. Students will be drafting discovery requests and responding to discovery requests, learning how to incorporate the information produced to elicit more information and data and how to incorporate the information and data obtained through the discovery process ultimately putting their client in the best position to move forward with litigation or forcing a sit down for settlement negotiations.
This course covers the organizational law of small businesses, particularly those with relatively few owners or shareholders. It introduces and compares different types of legal organizations commonly used by small businesses, such as general partnerships, limited partnerships, closely held corporations, and limited-liability companies (LLCs).
Topics include the formation of business organizations, the rights and duties of owners and managers, and the breakup of businesses. The course also covers the law of agency -- that is, the law that addresses the rights and duties that arise when one person acts for another.
This is a course that explores the state, federal and international laws governing the use and development of resources in coastal areas and the oceans. Such an exploration covers the federal and state common law, major federal statutes, international treaties, all from the perspective of the special needs of coastal areas and oceans. Prominent in this course are the ecological underpinnings of wildlife regulation, relationships between water, habitat, wildlife, and land use, and legal issues stemming from jurisdictional conflicts. For students planning to practice law in a coastal area, this course offers a useful survey of laws that may come up in a wide variety of practices, including but not limited to land use, development of energy resources, tourism and recreation, and commercial and recreational fishing.
This survey course covers topics that such as (1) the rights and responsibilities of sellers, buyers, lessors and lessees of personal property, including transactions in documents of title and letters of credit; and (2) studying the security interests in personal property. There is particular emphasis on Articles 2, 2A and 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code.
Prerequisites: Must not have taken Commercial Law Survey
Principles of commercial paper; system of bank deposits and collections, including the relationship of the commercial bank and its customer. The use of commercial paper in documentary exchanges is also covered.
Prerequisite: Property and Contracts
This commercial real estate course focuses on three key documents that are the mainstay of a transactional real estate lawyer's practice: the contract of sale, the loan, and the lease. Over the course of the semester, students will pair up to negotiate and draft each of these documents, and to role play as counsel to the purchaser or the seller for the contract of sale, the borrower or the lender for the loan, and the landlord or the tenant for the lease. Students will gain a comprehensive understanding of a commercial real estate deal by conducting due diligence and analyzing key ancillary documents that are part and parcel of a commercial deal. Students interested in careers in transactional law, real estate law, corporate law, or finance will find the skills they gain in this course fungible.
Prerequisites: Civil Procedure
This course examines the theory and practice of complex, multiparty cases. In particular, it examines the major procedural and substantive issues in nationwide class actions and non-class aggregation. Our readings and discussions will focus on class actions (including the requirements for class certification, dueling state and federal class actions, and the implications of settlement) and other advanced procedural topics such as joinder, multidistrict litigation, large-scale discovery, phased trials and preclusion.
Prerequisites: Civil Procedure
This seminar will focus on complex civil litigation. Complex cases test the ordinary assumptions of our adversary process, forcing us to reconsider the roles of litigants, lawyers, and judges, as well as the relations between them. Central in our study will be the class action, but we will also examine several alternative means of handling complicated cases, including individual or class arbitration, interpleader, and the multi-district litigation process. We will work to understand the legal and practical mechanics of modern aggregate litigation, and examine whether class treatment cures or worsens the pathologies of complex cases. In addition, we will look at other ways that large and complex cases strain the trial system, covering issues that include preclusion, jurisdiction, choice-of-law, discovery, the right to trial by jury, and case-management challenges.
The course will examine the law of Florida condominiums with emphasis on those of residential character, as well as the law of mandatory homeowners' associations, and its differences from, and similarities to, the law governing condominiums. The course will cover statutory and case components of the law; document composition and drafting for the creation of condominiums; the statutory standards for operations and governance; and dispute resolution and covenant enforcement within the community.
A study and analysis of decisional and statutory materials dealing with problems in areas such as consumer credit, deceptive and oppressive sales practices, extrajudicial collection efforts and the role of credit reporting agencies.
This course examines concerns, protections and regulations particular to consumer transactions in formation, substance, and remedies. Regulatory, statutory, and common law doctrines will be addressed, with an emphasis on federal and Florida consumer protection statutes. Major topics will include fraud, deceptive practices, fair and accurate credit reporting, Truth-in-Lending law, fair debt collection, and enforcement of consumer rights. We will examine the evolution of consumer protection law as well as the economic and social policies behind it, and also focus on the practical application of the law.
This course will teach the principles of contemporary commercial drafting, introduce documents typically used in a variety of business transactions and provide an overview of principled contract negotiation techniques. The course will be of particular interest to students pursuing a corporate law career, but the concepts are applicable to any transactional practice and will even be useful to litigators.
Students will be exposed to:
1) The business purpose of major contract concepts
2) Translating the business deal into contract concepts
3) Drafting each of a contract’s parts
4) Techniques for principled negotiation (win-win negotiation)
Practical examples will help students understand the importance of drafting with clarity and without ambiguity, how to work through the formal drafting process and how to review and comment on contracts. Students will participate in several multi-phase drafting exercises and mock negotiations.
An introduction to the basic foundations of enforceability of contractual arrangements: formation, performance, breach and damages, rights of third parties, conditions, Statute of Frauds, and assignments. Inquiry is made into the historical developments of contract law and nineteenth-century notions of the doctrine of consideration in light of developing twentieth-century concepts and alterations. Economic aspects of the subject are considered along with modern statutory developments, including the Uniform Commercial Code. A primary objective of this course is for students to develop a pattern of analysis and expression central to their work as lawyers.
This course is a comprehensive, three-credit introduction to U.S. copyright law. The course begins with an analysis of copyright's underlying policies and theoretical framework. It then examines the substantive and formal requirements for copyright protection; the rights accorded to authors and other copyright holders; the fair use defense; issues involving copyright ownership and transfer; copyright duration; possible Constitutional limitations on copyright; contributory and vicarious liability (focusing on music file trading services like Napster and Kazaa); and the Copyright Act preemption of state law.
An advanced corporate course designed to develop students' awareness of the range of legal issues involved in the public and private funding of the activities of a corporation or similar business entity. The course provides a basic analysis of commercial loan agreements; stocks, bonds, and other securities; mergers and acquisitions; corporate capital structure; and enterprise valuation.
This seminar focuses on corporate governance and the financial crisis. Specifically, we will examine the institutions, financial products, markets, and economic theories at the core of the recent financial crisis. Then, we will explore how, if at all, corporate law and related disciplines played a role in the crisis and/or should play a role in regulating financial firms and markets. Topics will include traditional fiduciary obligations, the shareholder empowerment movement, executive compensation, the legislative/regulatory response to the crisis, and the question of "too big to fail."
The purpose of this seminar is to study selected corporate law and finance issues from the perspective of law and economics, including: fiduciary duties, shareholder activism, executive compensation, takeovers, securities fraud, capital structure decisions and the Efficient Capital Markets hypothesis. We will pay special attention to the incentives of corporate participants to behave strategically and the relative effectiveness of markets and legal rules in reducing the level of inefficient strategic behavior. This course may fulfill the upper-level writing requirement.
An introduction to the language and law of business organizations, including agency, partnership, and business corporations. Topics include formation and structure of the corporation, power and fiduciary responsibility of management, rights and liabilities of shareholders, corporate capital structure and finance, shareholders' derivatives litigation, acquisitions and tender offers, and insider trading. Federal securities law is introduced.
This seminar will cover important and timely issues in environmental law. For example, the seminar may include discussion of issues that relate to various aspects of climate change adaptation and mitigation, the BP spill, and compliance with the environmental laws.
Prerequisite/Co-requisite: Patent Law, Trademarks & Unfair Competition, Copyright Law, International Aspects of Intellectual Property, Introduction to Intellectual Property, Intellectual Property & Business Strategy, or by instructor permission
In this seminar, students will survey a range of legal, political, economic and policy issues that arise in the application of Intellectual Property law. Because Intellectual Property laws originated long ago, the field faces constant challenges amid the new and ever-changing frontiers of innovation and creation. Students will read foundational materials relating to the nation’s intellectual property laws in order to explore their theoretical underpinnings in the context of current issues facing courts and scholars.
This is a seminar covering some of the legal issues that have arisen with the growth of the Internet. Topics examined will include e-commerce, intellectual property, crime on the Internet, first amendment, privacy, tort liability, and others. Each of these topics will be explored through the lens of a series of jurisprudential themes: What are the appropriate metaphors for conceptualizing cyberspace? Is there any role for law in regulating speech and conduct in cyberspace, or will social norms suffice? If law has a role in cyberspace, are traditional legal doctrines and categories adequate? If traditional doctrines and categories are inadequate, which legal institutions are the best to implement the changes this new technology requires--courts, legislatures, or administrative agencies?
This skills training course introduces students to federal and state regulations on cybercrime, cyberespionage, and cyberwar. Topics covered in the course include: consumer privacy protection; security protection responsibility of business entities, including disclosure requirements about privacy policies and cybersecurity breaches and employer monitoring and surveillance of employee computer activities; the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA); the Electronic Communications Protections Act (ECPA); and privacy and cybersecurity regulations of the Federal Trade Commission, Department of Health and Human Services, and the Federal Communications Commission.
This seminar introduces students to federal and state regulations on cybersecurity and cybercrime. Topics covered may include: consumer privacy protection; security protection responsibility of business entities, including disclosure requirements about privacy policies and cybersecurity breaches; employer monitoring and surveillance of employee computer activities; the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA); the Electronic Communications Protections Act (ECPA). Fulfills ULWR.
This is a skills based course that is designed to demonstrate, familiarize and instruct students in taking the depositions of a variety of witnesses and in a variety of situations. Students will be exposed to all aspects of a deposition and will be provided an understanding both academically and practically of the intricacies of a deposition.
The material will be taught by lecture and example, and role playing as advocates and deponents in several mock trials throughout the semester. Students will be expected to participate in all aspects of the mock depositions. The instruction will also include drafting notices, motions, questions, and participation in a final mock trial.
This course examines a variety of aspects of disability, including: the legal and policy framework underpinning federal law prohibiting discrimination on the basis of disability; the legal and social implications of having a disability; and entitlement programs. Particular emphasis will be on the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Fair Housing Act, Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. This course will also examine entitlement and social insurance programs (eg. Social Security and Medicaid/Medicare), the ideas of “capacity” and “competence” as legal constructs and the implication of federal healthcare policy decisions on people with disabilities.
The purpose of this seminar is to study the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010. Issues covered include: the causes of financial crises; the role of governments in regulating financial institutions, and of markets in meeting regulatory shortfalls; coordination between international financial regulators; the “too-big-to-fail” problem; risk management; financial derivatives, including mortgage-backed securities and other asset-backed securities; the role of rating agencies; the regulation of hedge funds; and consumer protection. We will study how the Dodd-Frank Act addressed each of these issues. This course may fulfill the upper-level writing requirement.
This skills training course offers upper level students opportunities to learn due diligence techniques that practicing attorneys use; to practice recognizing the breadth and depth of a client’s due diligence needs; and to develop the skills for the effective and efficient due diligent review of people, entities, places, and property. You will learn why these issues matter to various parties involved in a transaction, and how your findings could impact the final terms on which the transaction closes. Over the course of the semester, you will work independently to examine the details of a transaction for a new client. You will (i) identify the issues about which verification or further information is necessary, (ii) create and maintain an organized, current, cohesive, and concise due diligence checklist for the transaction, (iii) conduct the research and writing exercises appropriate to address those bulleted items, and (iv) maintain and update a due diligence report summarizing the findings of your due diligence examination.
In this skills training course, we will examine the principal legal and business issues that arise in Mergers & Acquisitions transactions. Topics include: the rationale for mergers and acquisitions (from both seller and buyer perspectives); the three primary M&A transaction structures (asset deal, stock deal, merger deal); business valuation (buyer and seller perspectives and basic financial statement review), confidential agreements (aka NDA—non-disclosure agreements); due diligence requests (financial and legal information); basic negotiating strategies; drafting of the relevant legal documents; common structures for financing M&A transactions; overview of relevant state and federal statutes and case laws. The course will be geared toward the student intending to practice transactional law, but should also be relevant for any law or business student who wants a better understanding of mergers and acquisitions practice and strategy.
More than 90% of all information is now created in electronic form ranging from Word documents and spreadsheets to email and social media. To keep up with technological advances, e-discovery has become the fastest developing field in law today. This new form of discovery impacts every type of litigation and has significant implications for individuals, small businesses, government entities, and corporations. Understanding basic electronic technology and the applicable law associated with data preservation, retrieval, and protection is critical whether you want to be a litigator, in-house counsel, or work in a regulatory agency that brings civil and criminal actions.
The course will be interactive and focus on developing the skills needed to practice law in the digital age. The course will address the laws applicable to electronic discovery and the technical aspects of preserving, retrieving, and protecting electronic data. An important component of the course will be guest speakers such as a computer forensics expert, software specialist, and a representative from a data storage solution center. Topics of discussion will include: the effect of electronic information on litigation, “litigation holds”, an overview of Florida and Federal civil procedure rules addressing electronic discovery, data collection, storage of electronic information, production issues, spoliation and sanctions, ethical issues in e-discovery, privilege issues arising out of e-discovery, and admissibility of digital evidence.
The text book will be Electronic Discovery and Digital Evidence in a Nut Shell. Course grade will be based on a final examination and class participation throughout the semester. No expertise of computer technology is required. The course fulfills the Skills Training requirement for graduation.
Review of various statutes and executive orders governing employment discrimination on the basis of sex, race, age, religion, color, national origin, and sexual preference. Emphasis is on the policy implications derived from case analysis.
This course provides a practical study of employment discrimination law, which is primarily federal and statutory in nature. The course will examine multiple issues surrounding employment discrimination but will focus on identifying discrimination and advising employers on avoiding claims of discrimination. The course will also examine what happens when a claim of discrimination is filed at both the administrative level and in federal court. These issues will be considered in the context of discrimination on the basis of race/color, national origin, gender/sexual orientation, age, religion and disability.
Survey of basic legal and policy concepts governing the employment relationship.
This course introduces students to the statutes, regulations, and common law principles that apply to all aspects of the energy system, including extracting and transporting fuels by pipeline and rail and generating, transmitting, and distributing electricity. Specific topics that we will discuss in this course include the disputes and legal battles surrounding the Keystone XL oil pipeline and the Sabal Trail natural gas pipeline; siting, preemption, and nuisance issues associated with renewable energy generation; legal disputes over the expansion of transmission lines to carry wind energy from remote areas in the Midwest to population centers; proceedings that establish rates for customers who purchase electricity and natural gas in their homes and apartments; the construction of liquefied natural gas export terminals (including one in Florida) and coal export terminals; the regulation of transporting crude oil by rail; and restructuring of the electricity industry in the United States and abroad, among other topics.
This course examines key issues involved in the practice of Entertainment Law. Taught primarily by focusing on the music industry—but relevant and with sections involving book publishing, film, theater, and television—the course includes details for both future litigators and future transactional attorneys alike. Topics include: copyright law, infringement, and fair use; sampling and the law; digital media; industry trends and changes in the Digital Age; licensing; record contracts, both old and new; songwriter contracts; producer contracts; management contracts; concert touring and promotion; trademarks and enforcement; basics of film financing and production; and the changing world of television. The course will regularly include music, video, and film examples to discuss in class.
This course introduces students to the core federal statutes, regulations, and common law principles that control humans’ impacts on environmental resources, including air, water, and soil. The course explores different types of approaches to controlling these impacts, such as market mechanisms, liability regimes, or regulations requiring specific pollution control technologies. The course addresses in depth several federal statutes that regulate many aspects of industrial and individual behavior, including requiring specific pollutant reductions and permits prior to engaging in a polluting activity. Further, Environmental Law includes discussion of mechanisms for implementing and enforcing these federal statutes.
Prerequisites: Gratuitous Transfers and Taxation
This course is a drafting seminar in which students evaluate a series of case studies and draft estate planning documents as indicated by the facts of the particular case study. Documents drafted may include an engagement letter, durable power of attorney, designation of health care surrogate, living will, revocable living trust with pour over will for married couple with minor children, standalone will with A-B trust form marital deduction planning, irrevocable insurance trust and complex will with aggressive GST tax planning.
More information coming soon!
Every lawyer should know how to read financial statements. Whether your practice concentrates in the areas of corporate, business, real estate, estate planning or family law, a lawyer will be required to read and analyze financial statements. In this skills course, students will learn basic accounting principles necessary to understand, interpret and analyze financial statements, formulate effective inquires, and communicate intelligently with business and financial professionals (as well as with their future clients). Students will read and use the information from real companies to analyze and interpret their financial statements. Specifically, this class will use real world examples to illustrate the interrelationships between financial statements and the documents underlying certain deals/transactions. The students will learn about financial reports, cash flow versus income, tax versus accounting books, the quality of earnings and analytical ratios, all of which may be necessary for a lawyer to conduct due diligence on a particular matter and to draft operative agreements. The class will also spend time analyzing past financial scandals and the financial issues that led to them (and the role a lawyer could/may have played in preventing them). This course assumes that participants have little or no background with respect to the preparation, analysis, and interpretation of financial statements. This course will fulfill the Skills Training Requirement for graduation. May be taken as a S/U grade only.
A study of the Florida Administrative Procedure Act (APA) and its interpretation by the courts. Major emphasis is placed on theories of delegation to administrative agencies, points of entry to obtain administrative review, and the relationship between the roles of administrative law judges, agency heads, and reviewing courts. Topics covered include the non-delegation doctrine, adjudication, non-rule policy, attorneys' fees, rule-making, rule challenges, bid protests, the statement of regulatory costs, judicial review, and formal legislative oversight.
This is a substantive law class relating to federal and Florida law on arbitration and Florida statutes and rules on mediation. There is also an emphasis on contract law and court jurisdiction.
This course is a practical introduction to the law and business of investment products. It will examine the financial industry’s most important structures (including mutual funds, ETFs, and REITs), strategies (such as private equity, venture capital, and hedge fund styles), and financial engineering tools (like securitizations and derivatives). In each case, students will consider not only the relevant legal issues, but the underlying investment ideas and the ways in which resulting products are distributed and sold.
The class will present a detailed look at gambling laws which impact Floridians. The course will focus on Florida statutes, rules and interpretive court and administrative rulings which define the boundaries of legalized gambling in our state. An overview of federal law and its impact on gambling in Florida will also be discussed.
Managers, shareholders, creditors, and regulators make decisions strategically: they try to predict how others may act, and they adjust their behavior in light of those predictions. Therefore, both transactional lawyers and business litigators can benefit from learning about “game theory,” the discipline that studies this sort of strategic behavior. In this seminar, we will learn about bargaining and litigation strategy, the importance of reputation when parties transact with each other repeatedly, and the extent to which informational asymmetries can distort market transactions. We will study these and related game theory issues through the lens of corporate law and finance, giving special attention to learning a critical skill: how to apply general theoretical concepts to transactional and litigation scenarios commonly encountered by business lawyers. This course may fulfill the upper-level writing requirement.
This seminar introduces students to the global system addressing public health matters, including the international institutional framework (e.g., the World Health Organization). It examines how national legal systems integrate within this global framework. A major part of the course addresses innovation and access to pharmaceutical products, including vaccines, therapeutics and diagnostics. Intellectual property and regulatory frameworks relevant to the pharmaceutical sector are considered. It is anticipated that the next several years in global public health will pay close attention to preparing for and responding to pandemics and other “pathogen events”. The evolution of negotiations in this area will be studied. Students will have the opportunity to prepare papers on a wide range of topics that may be of interest to them.
The purpose of this seminar is to study the U.S. health insurance market. We will begin by evaluating historical developments that have shaped the current market for health insurance and assess the evolving roles of consumers, health care providers, employers, insurance companies, and regulators. Efforts to reform the health insurance system, including the Affordable Care Act, have faced significant challenges and have met with varying degrees of success. We will evaluate factors contributing to rising health care costs, health care utilization, and decisions to purchase insurance. Issues covered will include mechanisms to control health care spending, the conduct and performance of the private health insurance market, and the need for government intervention. This course will be useful for students interested in working for law firms representing employers, insurers, or healthcare providers, and for those interested in working in consumer protection or health care policy. This seminar satisfies the ULWR.
This course studies legal issues related to the organization and delivery of healthcare. It examines regulation of health care professionals, organizational providers, and those involved in financing health care delivery. Topics include duties of individuals and organizations involved in healthcare delivery, regulation of the interaction of these entities, and the impact of financing arrangements on the delivery of healthcare.
The health care enterprise consists of an array of services and products intended to prevent, diagnose, treat, and conduct research on medical ailments. This enterprise encompasses preventive interventions, acute and chronic diagnostic services and treatment delivered in both inpatient and outpatient settings, biomedical and behavioral research, institutional and community-based long-term care, and mental health and addiction services. The American health care enterprise consists of participants drawn from the governmental, private not-for-profit, and proprietary (for-profit) sectors. The primary, tripartite goal of the health care enterprise is to deliver high quality health care services that are affordable and accessible to the public. This seminar will explore the ways in which recent federal and state legal and programmatic developments, as well as initiatives mounted by private actors (such as insurance companies, health care corporations, and employers), are likely to impact the accomplishment of the quality/affordability/access goal. At the federal level, main emphasis will be placed on the Affordable Care Act and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Following several class sessions during which students will discuss background material, the bulk of the seminar will consist of students preparing individual written papers on topics of their selection and making class presentations based on those papers.
“In-house counsel” refers to lawyers employed by corporations and similar entities. The course explores the roles of in-house attorneys, entity governance and decision-making, risk assessment, regulatory compliance and lobbying, corporate self-policing and internal investigations, and working with outside counsel. It also considers professional responsibility issues such as confidentiality, privileges, conflicts of interest, and balancing business and legal advice.
This course is usually taught as a seminar, with grades based upon student papers. Alternatively, this course may be taught as a non-seminar, in which case grading may be based on simulation exercises including drafting documents commonly prepared by in-house counsel.
This course covers basic legal principles and their applicability to insurance generally. Construction of contracts, government supervision, insurance practice and litigation, and industry organization are reviewed.
This course introduces the global system for the regulation of intellectual property rights (IPRs). It discusses the institutions and treaties regulating the grant and enforcement of IPRs and the policies underlying the international IP system. The course considers each major form of IP from an international perspective, including patents, trademarks, copyrights, geographical indications, design rights and trade secret/data protection. Various important issues regarding the interface between IPRs, industrial policy, economic and social interests, are considered. These include the role of IPRs and transfer of technology in addressing climate change and other environmental matters, the interplay between IPRs and public health, and the set of issues affecting the digital environment.
This course provides an introduction to the work performed by lawyers in international business transactions and to the specific skills and knowledge needed to negotiate multinational transactions. International and several domestic regulatory frameworks for foreign trade and investment will be analyzed. We will focus on single, commodity trades; distributorships; technology transfer; and joint venture vehicles for direct foreign investment. Negotiating strategies and cultural considerations in multinational transactions will be discussed. There will be specific coverage of the business and legal contexts of Europe, China and Japan.
This course is a primer on international commercial sales and the international arbitration mechanism utilized to resolve most all international sales disputes. It introduces international sales; in particular, the Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods (CISG), the contract law covering merchant to merchant international sales of goods. And it introduces international arbitration; particularly, international commercial arbitration tribunals, the private, consensual bodies that resolve most international sales disputes. This primer applies the CISG and arbitration principles to issues and problems facing the sales and arbitration world today.
This course covers the law and institutions governing the global trading system, including that of the World Trade Organization (WTO) and regional trading arrangements (e.g., the European Union and NAFTA). The WTO incorporates a dispute settlement system, including the Appellate Body, the jurisprudence of which is followed by other trading regimes. The laws and institutions of the United States that are relevant to international trade are addressed, including constitutional aspects, import and export rules, and rules providing border protection for intellectual property. For the past several decades, the United States has actively negotiated bilateral and regional trading arrangements to promote US interests, and current negotiating efforts (e.g., the TransPacific Partnership) are discussed. A substantial part of new trading arrangements address protection of investment, including in many cases investor-to-state dispute settlement (ISDS). The course covers investment rules, including ISDS, as a feature of trading arrangements. International trade policy and rules affect a range of other subject matters, including the environment, innovation, public health, labor and human rights.
This is the first Internet course for American and Chinese students of international trade. In it, American and Chinese students simultaneously participate in simulated trade transactions with one another. Using an Internet-based program and a workbook designed just for this course, students will play the role of simulated corporations in their respective countries who are seeking to trade goods between China and the United States. To do this, students at both the Florida State College of Law and the Shanghai Institute of Foreign Trade (SIFT) log on regularly to receive news about trading opportunities. Using guidance provided in introductory lectures and in the workbook, and under the guise of simulated corporations provided in the Internet environment of the course, students will contact one another across the Pacific Ocean and carry out the actual steps of an international trade transaction. Students will also regularly maintain online records of their company's transactions, in order to track the results of their deals. In addition, Florida State students will meet once a week for a two-hour session in which the week's transactions are discussed and any problems that cropped up can be analyzed and solved. Florida State and SIFT students will also log onto the program during one designated hour per week, at which time they will converse about their respective legal and business cultures and have an opportunity to collaboratively solve problems that typically crop up in Sino-American business transactions. At the end of the semester, a banquet will be held at which time stock will be taken of the financial health of each of the simulated corporations.
The primary objective of this three credit course is to familiarize students with various analytic methods and tools and their applications to various legal fields and issues. Topics include decision analysis, risk and uncertainty, preference aggregation and voting problems, selected issues in finance (e.g. time value of money and diversification of risk), elementary game theory, financial statements, basic microeconomics and fundamental concepts in statistical analysis.
This course introduces students to business law, finance, and commercial transactions. The course covers key topics in business, economics, and finance that students will need to know if they plan to do transactional work or commercial litigations. It covers these topics through the lens of corporate law and commercial law (sales, secured transactions, commercial paper). Second-year students taking the course will be introduced to a set of foundational concepts that they will revisit in greater detail if they take more advanced courses in the area. Third year students with little or no prior exposure to corporate and commercial law will learn basic legal concepts that they will likely see in practice, and in the bar exam.
This course provides a comprehensive overview of the various forms of intellectual property for which protection is afforded in the United States, including patent, trademark, copyright, trade secret, design, semiconductor chip and plant variety protection. It will introduce the mechanisms by which protection is secured, the scope of protection, the way protection is enforced, and discuss the various limitations on rights, such as fair use doctrines. Intellectual property is relevant to virtually all fields of business and creative activity, and lawyers will inevitably confront issues relating to intellectual property in their practice. This course is intended both for students who want a general background in this area, and for those who intend to specialize in the field and may take (or may have taken) more specific courses covering intellectual property.
A study of basic transactions in real property. Among the topics covered are the respective roles of lawyers and brokers in the conveying process, sales contracts, recording acts, title insurance, remedies for contract breach, and basic mortgage law.
This course addresses legal and regulatory issues that arise during the process of developing land. It focuses on Florida but also addresses issues from other states. Students learn about the processes that landowners and developers follow to obtain local or state government approval for a project, such as applying for revisions to comprehensive plans, re-zonings, development orders, special use permits, variances, subdivision approvals, and development agreements. Students also learn how state and local governments—again, with a focus on Florida—regulate land use and review land use and development applications. The course also addresses resource-based issues associated with land development, including historic, cultural, and natural resources. Finally, students learn about private land use controls, such as covenants, conditions, and restrictions, used to further regulate projects and build and preserve property values.
The course consists of lectures from industry specialists in the Florida insurance market and professors from the Risk Management division of FSU's College of Business. These lectures provide students with a wealth of valuable information on risk management policy in addition to tips for success in the practice of law and business. During the course students have the opportunity to meet with Florida's insurance regulatory officers and leaders in Florida's administration and public finance sectors. If scheduling permits, students will also be able to see the legislative process in action with coordinated trips to the Florida House and Senate to view the Banking and Insurance committees. S/U only.
Economics plays an important role in all areas of the law. This course introduces students to the economic concepts that they will need to know to be effective litigators and transactional lawyers. Among other things, we will address the following questions. How do markets work? What happens when one party to a transaction has an informational or bargaining advantage? How can we tell whether a party is acting rationally or irrationally? How can lawyers use economics to advice clients, draft contracts and make persuasive legal arguments? We will learn all the relevant economics in class — i.e., no previous knowledge of economics is required.
This course provides a survey of business law topics typically encountered when advising small, new, and entrepreneurial businesses. Topics range from selection of an appropriate business entity type and completing the legal formalities to establish the entity to exits from business ownership. In between students will be exposed to legal issues of importance to entrepreneurs including basic tax considerations, debt and equity finance, employee and independent contractor issues, securing intellectual property rights, typical contract matters, insurance, creditors rights and the UCC. Each topic will be taught from the perspective of advising a small business client on essential legal requirements for protection of their business interest with emphasis on practical ways to meet those requirements.
This course seeks to provide students with an introduction to the creation, interpretation and application of statutes and regulations, and the central role that they play in modern American governance.
This seminar provides students an opportunity to research and discuss a variety of doctrines that can be employed to enable the contract and tort claimants against one entity to access the resources of another entity. Doctrines in various stages of development include alter ego, fraudulent transfer, integrated business, joint venture, nominee, partnership, principal/agent, successor liability, veil piercing. Students will orally present their papers and write after receiving comment from the instructor.
This seminar will examine a series of legal issues raised by (1) the flow of personal information through social media, (2) the emergence of business models that make money from those information flows, and (3) the role of social media companies as information gatekeepers. Together we will explore the interplay of law (like the rights and freedoms the media enjoy under the First Amendment), and ethics (the professional responsibilities that historically have cabined the exercise of these rights). We will consider how legal and ethical frameworks shape access to information, as well as the quality and truthfulness of information with which consumers interact. We will also consider the central role of online gatekeepers that provide access to much of the news consumed in today’s society, but do not see themselves as bound by the same laws and ethics that have shaped the role of traditional information gatekeepers.
This class allows students to meet the Upper Level Writing Requirement. Each student will write a paper for the class, subject to the professor's approval. Attendance and careful preparation are required.
This course will focus on specific topics in medical malpractice, and provider and institutional liability generally. Unlike a survey class, this class will explore in depth the legal issues surrounding initiating, or defending, a malpractice claim. Students will not only learn the settled law surrounding malpractice cases (or institutional liability), but they will also encounter ongoing areas of legal ambiguity. Students will not only be responsible for reading and discussing the material, but also for presenting part of it to their peers; accordingly, students will develop the ability to present concepts coherently, interact with questions or conflicting opinions, and engage in fruitful discussion. Students will write a seminar paper and present its thesis to their classmates as well. Successful completion of this course will count as fulfilling an upper level writing requirement (ULWR).
This seminar will take a closer look at the liability of providers and institutions, focusing on medical malpractice in particular. Class sessions will involve students presenting assigned material and engaging in active discussion with one another. Students will be graded both on their in-class presentations of material but also on their ability to engage with material presented by other students and the professor.
In addition to the in-class participation, students will write a seminar paper and present it to the class. This seminar is offered in two tracks: one to fulfill an Upper Level Writing Requirement (ULWR) and one that will not. Both tracks will have intermediate graded deadlines, such as submitting a topic list /final topic and turning in an outline with a source list. The ULWR track will be required to turn in a rough draft. Non-ULWR students may turn in a rough draft if desired, but this is not required.
Any rough draft turned in will be graded and will account for 10% of the student’s raw grade.
Prerequisites: Business Associations (or Corporations)
This is an advanced course in the law of mergers and acquisitions. The course will start with fundamental financial theory and proceed to examine the applicable state and federal law. (For this purpose, the only state that really matters is Delaware, although from time to time the law of other commercially important states will also appear.) The course will be most useful for students who intend to practice with a firm or government agency representing or regulating large publicly traded corporations (or with a plaintiffs' firm that brings class or derivative actions against such corporations.) It may not be useful to students who already know that their practices will not involve publicly held corporations, although they are of course welcome to take it.
This is a survey course of federal and state laws pertaining to the use and governance of natural resources, such as water, wetlands, forests, rangeland, wildlife, and energy resources. As opposed to Environmental Law (which is a complement to this course), Natural Resources Law deals with the exploitation of resources, rather than the pollution of them, and as such, contemplates a vastly different system of laws and regulations. This course briefly explores some simple ecological and economic concepts, and how some federal and state laws reflect these concepts. Prominent in this course is the concept of natural resource planning, the primary means by which federal and state governments make decisions about the exploitation of resources.
This course provides an introduction to federal natural resources law, with an emphasis on living resources. In a mixed seminar format, we’ll survey the legal treatment of wildlife and biodiversity, fisheries and marine resources, water resources, forests and rangelands, protected public lands, multiple use public lands, and energy (as time allows). We’ll draw lessons from these fields to understand the themes and conflicts of environmental management generally, and the unique qualities of natural resources that render management efforts so difficult. Throughout the course, we will probe the interplay between environmental, economic, cultural, and political factors that complicate natural resource decision-making—especially in a resource rich state like Florida, where each of the surveyed resources plays a foundational role.
In the final weeks of the course, students will present their own research projects, each culminating in a final paper. Students will also participate in a weekly online discussion group. Our materials of study will include but not be limited to judicial materials; we will also study natural resource law problems, case studies, statutes and implementing regulations, and other means of probing contemporary natural resource dilemmas. Our goal is to educate you not only about the statutes and cases, but also the underlying problems that each are struggling to resolve, in order to best equip you to participate in this process in all legal contexts. This course counts toward the Upper Level Writing Requirement and the Environmental Certificate, but non-certificate students and those new to environmental law are also very welcome in the class.
This course introduces the theory and practice of negotiation in a workshop setting. We will examine the basic stages of a negotiation; the major tensions at play in negotiation; distributive bargaining, value-creating, and problem-solving techniques; the management of communication and emotional elements in negotiation; power dynamics and ethics; lawyer-client relationships, and other topics as time allows. The course is designed to help students develop negotiating skills and a framework for ongoing self-learning through role-playing simulations, discussion, reading assignments, and regular journal and writing exercises.
Attendance and First Day Policy: The course attendance policy is unusually strict, because much of our learning takes place during in-class simulated negotiation role-plays. Attendance for each class meeting is mandatory, as absences frustrate not only your own learning but the learning opportunities of the students you are partnered with in that day's simulation. For that reason, you should only enroll in the course if you can commit to attend every class session (on time), and all students must be present at the beginning of the first class to maintain their seats. Waitlisted students are invited to attend the first class in case a space opens up at that time.
This is a 2-credit class surveying the comprehensive law of nonprofit organizations. The course will begin with an overview of the nonprofit sector and provide an understanding of the various dimensions and rationales for nonprofit organizations. We’ll then dissect the legal framework of these organizations, including formation, dissolution, and restructuring; operation and governance; and state and federal requirements for existence. The course will conclude with a discussion of the taxation of charitable organizations, the impact commercial activities have on exempt status, and special constitutional issues private membership associations face.
This course will explore the law that applies to extracting and transporting oil and gas resources in the United States. The first several days of the course will describe the process of locating minerals underground and drilling and hydraulic fracturing for natural gas and oil, as these processes and technical terms for these processes will arise in many of the cases that we will explore. After students have a basic understanding of the oil and gas development process, we will address the many types of law that apply to oil and gas extraction and transportation, including public law regulations and statutes as well as common law property, contract, and tort, among other laws. Using recent cases, we will explore who owns minerals and in what form; how mineral owners commonly “lease” minerals to energy companies and obtain bonuses, royalties and other payments in return; disputes that arise between mineral lessors and lessees over royalty payments and other lease issues; disputes between those who own minerals and those who own the surface; and environmental and social issues that arise during the drilling process and the lease terms and regulations that address these issues. We will also address recent court decisions that address state preemption of local oil and gas regulation. Finally, we will spend several days exploring the regulation of natural gas and oil pipelines, including the construction, siting, and operation of pipelines, and we will briefly touch upon export policies.
This course involves an in-depth study of the law applicable to patents. The patent is the form of intellectual property protecting "inventions.” It is the most important form of protection for enterprises competing on the basis of technological advantage. The course covers patentable subject matter, application for grant, the criteria of patentability, rights of patent holders, causes of action against alleged infringers, defenses, remedies, licensing, the relevant application of competition/antitrust law and patent policy.
Pre/Co-requisites: Land Use Regulation
This course is offered in tandem with Land Use Regulation. Students in this course will apply the doctrine they learn in Land Use Regulation to a realistic, hypothetical master-planned community located in coastal Florida, in order to consider how multiple regulatory programs are applied to a single project. Students will learn how to analyze a broad range of issues that can arise during the approval process for a complex project in Florida and how to work with clients, regulators, and stakeholders in the community. Practical exercises will include writing a strategy memorandum to the developer who is seeking land use approval for the new community, review a transportation analysis prepared for this project, consider ethical issues for lawyers representing developers and regulators, and gain experience with other practical aspects of this specialized practice in Florida.
This course examines information privacy, an individual's right to control his or her personal information held by others. The aim of the course is to understand how courts and Congress seek to protect information privacy as new technologies and institutional practices emerge. The course traces the origins of the right to information privacy in American law through Constitutional law, tort law, and modern statutory law. Case studies of landmark privacy legislation illustrate how expectations of privacy are translated into legal frameworks.
A study of the legal responsibility for product-related harm. Topics include the legal theories of liability for product injury, definitions of product defectiveness, government regulation of product safety, evidentiary issues in products liability litigation, and the politics and economics of contemporary products liability reform. Course uses problem method of instructions, with students occupying roles as attorneys and judges.
This course offers an overview of basic concepts and principles in public health law, examined in the context of issues such as government planning for natural and manmade disasters, mandatory immunization programs, mandatory medical screening of particular population groups, mandatory disease reporting laws, infectious disease control methods like quarantine, public health research, and regulation and litigation concerning tobacco, alcohol, firearms, and drugs with abuse potential. The focus will be on identification and analysis of the duties, powers and limits of government in its pursuit of protecting and promoting the public’s health.
This course is designed to train students to analyze complex commercial real estate transactions. It is interdisciplinary within law, attempting to integrate topics including basic mortgage law, usury law, subordination agreements, mechanics lien law, selected uniform commercial code issues, choice of business entity, federal and state securities law and, importantly, federal income tax law. Condominia and cooperatives are discussed as security devices. The federal income tax coverage concentrates on a handful of issues fundamental to commercial real estate transactions, especially the tax treatment of indebtedness and tax aspects of leasing arrangements, including synthetic lease transactions.
This course teaches students the fundamentals of Florida real property law. Broadly speaking, students will learn four areas of real property law: what type of property right do you have (running from the Spanish land grants to present day forms of ownership), how does the government regulate that right (zoning, environmental regulation, etc.), how do you extract value from your property rights (sale, leases, etc.), and what are the different forms of litigation that arise over property rights?
This course covers the remedies available to successful litigants, including money damages, injunctive relief and restitution. It surveys these remedies from a broad variety of subjects, including especially traditional common-law causes of action such as contract, tort and property, as well as family law, civil rights and constitutional law. Attention is paid to how the available remedies shape both the underlying substantive law and the parties’ litigation strategies.
This course examines the nature of scientific evidence, the recent revolution in the scientific gate-keeping role for judges following the Supreme Court's decision in Daubert, and a variety of controversies regarding the admissibility and weight of particular types of expert testimony. After covering the basic legal tests for the admission of scientific evidence, we will proceed to examine several recurring topics in the law of expert testimony. We will give special attention to questions of scientific identification (common in criminal cases) and questions of scientific proof of causality (common in products liability and toxic tort cases). We will also consider common types of expert evidence from the behavioral sciences, including syndrome evidence and evidence regarding defects in human memory. In each instance we will examine the bases for claims of expertise and survey how these claims have fared in the courts.
Co-requisites: Corporations OR Closely Held Business Organizations
A study of the regulation of securities under the federal securities laws. Topics include registration of public offerings, exempt sales, insider trading, anti-fraud rules, mergers and tender offers, and the professional responsibility of securities lawyers.
Prerequisites: Conversational Spanish skills are required. Listening, speaking, reading and writing at an intermediate level of proficiency is preferred.
The objective of this class is to increase the skills and ability of Spanish speaking law students to communicate with Spanish speaking clients. Students will be exposed to legal terms in various subject areas of law including criminal law, torts, immigration, family law, contracts and consumer protection. Students will be given various reading assignments and expected to discuss the topics in Spanish. Additionally, students will be given writing assignments that may involve either drafting legal documents or client correspondence in Spanish, or the translation of legal documents into Spanish. Students will also participate in mock interviews with Spanish speaking clients seeking legal advice or representation.
A study of state and federal laws relating to the business of sporting competitions as entertainment, including matters such as the creation of a free market for players' services, the relationships of franchise owners to the league commissioner, player/agent relationships and contract negotiation. There is also some study of the NCAA regulation of collegiate athletics.
Although useful to both criminal law-interested students and tax-interested students, this is principally a criminal law course. This is a skill training course in which students will learn core criminal law concepts such as scienter, criminal tax procedure constitutional issues, and post-conviction remedies and achieve basic competence in working with the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other considerations bearing on sentencing. Students will also learn how to effectively employ standard strategies of defense and will gain awareness of ethical obligations in handling potential or actual criminal matters. You need know nothing about tax to take the course, and technical tax rules form no part of the teaching or grading in the course. The main basis of grading will be performance on three take-home written assignments. These assignments simulate documents practicing criminal tax attorneys typically prepare, such as pleadings, proposed jury instructions, advocacy letters, and strategy memos. There is no final exam. Meets skills training requirement.
Prerequisites: Taxation I
This seminar evaluates topics such as the choice of a tax base (income or consumption), rate structure (flat or progressive), taxable unit (individual or family), and method of government spending (direct or through the tax system via tax expenditures) against the tax policy norms of equity, efficiency and administrability to determine how well the present tax system satisfies these norms.
Prerequisites: Taxation I
This course has two main aspects: 1) the judicial and administrative mechanisms available for resolving disputes between taxpayers and the IRS as to the meaning of federal tax laws and 2) collection options available to the IRS after tax liability has been determined (along with ways by which taxpayers and third parties may challenge the IRS’s use of such options). Knowledge of the substantive rules of tax liability is not required. Accordingly, there are no pre- or co-requisites. Grading usually is based on a series of take-home simulations rather than a final exam and so typically satisfies the Skills requirement.
A study of the fundamental concepts employed in federal income taxation, the public policies that underlie the current system and the impact of that system on individuals and business entities. Could be called Federal Income Tax, Income Tax or Tax.
Prerequisites: Legal Writing & Research I & II
This online, asynchronous course is designed to help students develop the sophisticated research skills necessary for the effective practice of taxation law. It emphasizes research of federal and state tax issues based on statutes, administrative rules, agency materials and judicial decisions, in order to help clients with both tax planning and compliance. Students will be introduced to concepts, sources and specialized tools used in income, business entity, and estate and gift taxation law research.
Prerequisites: Taxation I
This course is an introduction to the federal income taxation of business entities. The course covers the taxation of C corporations and their shareholders. C corporations are generally taxed as entities separate and distinct from their shareholders. The course will also cover the taxation of LLCs/partnerships and their owners. Under subchapter K, there is no entity-level tax on an LLC or partnership, and amounts of income and deductions recognized by the entity flow through to its owners to be reported on the owner’s tax return. Finally, the course will also cover S corporations, which are certain closely held corporations that are generally not taxed separately. The course will include discussion of the tax consequences of formation, operation and liquidation of business entities, as well as distributions of cash and other property by the entity.
Technology is changing the practice of law in all fields and venues. This course will provide students with the theoretical and practical background to understand these changes and to have a positive impact on a firm’s or an organization’s responses to such challenges. Areas of special focus include: litigation technologies; document management; electronic discovery; legal process and project management; eLawyering and virtual law practice; and the ethical, security and privacy issues implicated by these technological changes.
This three-credit course provides an introduction to federal natural resources law, with an emphasis on living resources. In a mixed lecture and seminar format, we will examine the themes and theoretical conflicts that underlie natural resource management, as well as the special qualities of natural resource problems that render management efforts so difficult. Throughout the course, we will probe the interplay between environmental, economic, cultural, and political factors in natural resource decision-making.
In the early weeks of the course, we will explore the regulatory tools and challenges that are common to all natural resource dilemmas. We’ll then apply these concepts in a partial survey of the field, including the legal treatment of wildlife and biodiversity, fisheries and marine resources, water resources, forests and rangelands, protected public lands, multiple use public lands, and (as time allows) energy. In the final weeks of the course, students will present their own research projects, each culminating in a final paper. Students will also participate in a weekly online discussion group.
This course counts toward the upper-level writing and Environmental Certificate requirements, but non-certificate students and those new to environmental law are also very welcome in the class.
The study of civil wrongs for which the common law provides a remedy in the form of an action for damages. Topics include how accident losses are distributed; the role of trial judge, jury, and appellate judiciary; the language of negligence; and intentional wrongs.
A trademark identifies and distinguishes the source of the goods or services of one party from those of others. In this course, we will consider how and when trademark rights are secured; what rights are accorded to trademark owners under the federal Lanham Act and state laws; how trademark can be infringed or diluted; the circumstances under which trademark protection can be lost; the limitations placed on trademark rights; and federal registration regimes and the related right of publicity.
This seminar will explore the role of trust in various relationships and how the law may promote or undermine trust between interacting parties. During the course of the semester, we will critically discuss the nature of trust, fiduciary relationships, trust in consumer transactions, and extra-legal trusting relationships, such as familial relationships and other social interactions. We will discover the limits of trust and the law’s ability to influence it as well as gain an understanding of how the law deeply influences a wide array of human interactions. The paper written for this seminar will fulfill the upper level writing requirement.
This course provides an introduction to Water Law and Policy, a subject of great import to practitioners of environmental law, property law, international law, and other fields that contend with the allocation of scarce water resources among competing human, economic, and environmental needs. Water management is especially important in Florida, which lies over the largest freshwater aquifer in the world, and Florida has become a leader in modern regulatory approaches. The course explores the mechanics of water governance and how it has confronted the tensions between public and private rights in common pool resources and between the rule of law and legal instrumentalism. Water Law continues to grapple with unforeseeable changes in technology, societal needs, and scientific understanding, each forcing questions about the degree to which law should, must, and/or can adapt to new circumstances.
The first half of the course will cover the major doctrines of private water allocation in the eastern and western United States—riparian rights, prior appropriations, and hybrid permit systems. The second half of the course will explore special topics that intersect with Water Law, including groundwater, constitutional takings, the public trust doctrine, federal reserved rights, interstate and international disputes, water institutions, and Florida water governance. To experience these issues in living color, the class will take a mid-semester field trip to a regional site of Water Law interest. This course will be useful for students interested in careers in environmental law, land use law, urban planning, real estate development, agricultural and food law, and municipal and state government. The course may be used to count toward the Upper-Level Writing Requirement and Environmental Certificate, but other students are also very welcome in the class.
The course will cover a range of topics, including, among others, corporate criminal liability, mail fraud, securities fraud, tax fraud, and environmental crimes.
This course surveys the statutory no-fault insurance system that displaces tort law in the workplace. Class discussion centers on the scope of coverage and benefits under compensation legislation.