The Marine Affairs Institute holds a major symposium every other year. These events draw national and international experts in their various fields to RWU Law. Students can attend these symposia for free. Past topics range from fisheries law, climate change and the legacy of the Deepwater Horizon disaster.
Course Descriptions - %1
Legal Practice II
This skills course complements Legal Practice I. The emphasis is on the development of advocacy skills through problem analysis, legal research, the writing of an appellate brief and the presentation of oral argument. Students are trained in computer-aided legal research.
This course introduces students to forms of practical legal writing not covered in Legal Practice I and II. The fundamentals of legal drafting are addressed, with an emphasis on the principles of good writing and editing. Assignments reflect the types of legal writing an attorney encounters in daily office practice - documents for litigation, as well as those designed to avoid litigation. Typical projects include correspondence, simple contracts, pleadings, discovery documents, motion papers, jury instructions, orders, and settlement papers. Students may be asked to write from the perspective of a judge or legislator, as well as a practitioner.
This course provides an introduction to the law of property, both real and personal. Real property concepts are emphasized. Topics include historical development, common law principles, gifts, estates in land, licenses, easements, restrictive covenants, future interests, contracts for the sale of land, conveyancing, mortgages, the recording system and possessory rights. Land-use regulation will be introduced if time permits.
This course will consider and evaluate benefit delivery systems for those who suffer work related injuries. Class discussion will trace the evolution of the law from common law tort system and the use of the affirmative defenses to bar most claims to the development of benefit systems which do not utilize fault as a liability measure. The structure of the benefit system will be evaluated and distinctions considered between the various state systems as well as the federal longshore and harbor workers compensation act.
This course explores both the theoretical and practical aspects of negotiation and focuses on the techniques, strategies, tactics, ethical restraints and responsibilities of the lawyer. The course is designed to give students experience by engaging in negotiation exercises, and in reviewing and critiquing simulations. Students will participate as negotiators, third parties, and observers. A short paper is required in addition to the exercises.
Rhode Island Procedure: Developments and Practice
A study of Civil Procedure in Rhode Island, its transition in 1966 from a common law and equity system to a procedure patterned upon the Federal Procedure and its substantial revision in 1995. In depth consideration of the progression of a civil action from its commencement in the Superior Court to appellate review in the Supreme Court.
Legal Drafting: Commercial Leasing
This class will focus on lease agreements between landlords and tenants of commercial real estate, including leases for office space, for retail stores, and for dustrial/manufacturing property. Almost every business will be a party to a commercial real estate lease agreement, either as landlord or tenant, at some point in the life of that business. Knowledge of commercial real estate leases is an essential skill for real estate lawyers, as well as corporate lawyers. Litigators will also need to know the fundamentals of commercial real estate leases because these agreements often result in disputes and lawsuits. This class will also explore some of the alternative uses for leases, such as leases being used as financing alternatives. Class sessions will be devoted to section-by-section analysis of leases followed by student exercises to draft and revision of these documents.
This course examines the federal law of bankruptcy of individuals and corporations. The role of the bankruptcy courts, the coverage of claims subject to bankruptcy, and reorganization plans will be among the matters studied.
Collision and Limitation of Liability
This course presents the general principles of maritime collision law, including causation, legal presumptions, the effect of statutory violations, apportionment of fault, damage and an overview of the navigation rules. It will also examine the theory and effect of the principles of limitation, and particularly the Limitation of Liability Act of 1854.
This course will examine primarily the taxation of corporations and other business organizations under the federal tax law. Consideration will also be given to international taxation issues, as well as the systems of taxation developed in the various states.