Our Pro Bono Collaborative mobilizes Rhode Island law firms, law students and community organizations to provide desperately needed legal assistance for the underserved residents of the state. The unique program includes 10 major law firms, over 20 community-based organizations and several dozen law students.
Course Descriptions - %1
Estate Planning And Drafting
This course deals with the practical application of estate planning principles to various client situations. Topics include client interviews; estate planning for young adults, individuals contemplating marriage, unmarried couples, young couples with children, and older clients with children; transfers to grandchildren; planning for second marriages; asset protection; retirement planning; perpetual trusts; charitable gifts; and an overview of estate administration. Wills and Trusts is a prerequisite.
This course introduces the law controlling the introduction and exclusion of evidence in civil and criminal trials. Topics include burden of proof, presumption, judicial notice, burden of production, burden of persuasion, competency of witnesses, relevancy, examinations of witnesses, privileges, hearsay, demonstrative evidence, documents and the function of judge and jury.
Family & Divorce Mediation
This upper level legal skills development course is intended to provide the student with an understanding of the contexts in which family conflict arises, the various legal and practical issues in play when families disintegrate, and with in-depth training in the skills that a mediator might employ to help the divorcing parties resolve their differences. The course exposes the student to relevant factors and normative approaches used by courts in dividing property, determining child support, custody, visitation, and spousal support among other issues, while recognizing that parties in mediation are empowered to reach their own agreements with the aid of the mediator. Role playing exercises are used to integrate theory with practice.
This course examines the underlying social and economic principles of family life, its regulation by government, and constitutional limitations on regulation. Direct laws covering marriage, divorce, and child custody will be examined but also the course will cover those areas of law--property, income maintenance, medical care, schooling and crime--that also have direct impact on families in this society.
This course will examine the relationship of federal courts to other organs of federal government and to the states, including an analysis of congressional control over jurisdiction; federal review of state court decisions; the relationship between state and federal substantive and procedural law; the scope of federal questions and diversity of citizenship jurisdiction in federal courts; abstention; federal injunctions of state criminal proceedings; and problems of justiciability and mootness.
Federal Income Tax
This course provides a survey of the federal income tax system as it relates to individual and business activity. Topics include code, regulation, and case analysis; tax policy, economics, and public finance; and tax legislation. Specific concepts included are income, exclusions, deductions, credits, tax accounting, and tax procedure.
Federal Practice/Commercial Litigation
This course combines what has traditionally been taught in two separate courses on Pretrial Practice and Trial Advocacy. The idea behind this course is that federal litigation must be viewed holistically, meaning with an understanding and appreciation for the reality that litigation, from the filing of a complaint through trial, is an integrated process that begins with a well-pled complaint, proceeds through discovery, often involves substantive and dispositive motion practice, and ends (if it is not resolved earlier) at trial. The course is a full year long in order to mimic the actual life cycle of a case in federal court. Students will work on an actual case by drafting pleadings, taking/defending depositions, filing and arguing at least one dispositive motion, and ultimately trying the case before a judge and jury. In addition, throughout the year, students will receive lectures, practice exercises, and guest lectures on key aspects of litigation, including complaint drafting, deposition skills, settlement process and strategy, and trial tactics. This course will be taught primarily by a seasoned litigator and a faculty member, both of whom have practiced in federal court. The students will be split into teams and each team with have a lawyer-coach assigned to assist them. Judge William Smith of the U.S. District Court for the District of Rhode Island will attend a limited number of the class sessions and preside over some courtroom activities, as his schedule permits
Feminist Legal Theory
This course examines how feminist legal theorists have understood and critiqued our legal system and its norms. The course will explore various schools and debates within feminist legal theory, and how feminist scholars bring feminist analysis to bear on a number of contemporary issues of law and public policy, including intimate and familial relationships, work and wealth distribution, and the regulation of sexuality. Requires Honors enrollment.
Fisheries Law & Policy
This course will examine the law and policies of federal, state, and international regulations of fishing, with the primary focus on federal regulation under the Magnuson-Stevens Fisheries Act. The course will examine the science of fisheries stocks and various approaches that have been tried or proposed for managing and conserving fisheries. The course will also examine the administrative law framework governing fisheries. Among the issues the course will examine are the competing policies at issue in managing fisheries and the ways that law seeks to address the competing interests in exploitation and conservation, commercial and recreational fishing, national and international interests, and the selection of local, national, and international control.
Genocide and Atrocity Crimes
Genocide in the 20th Century: In this course, which meets on Friday and Saturday on two separate weeks, Professor Noone explores the phenomenon of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes and the legal instruments available to identify and punish atrocity crimes.