239 Ethics and the Law of Lawyering in Civil Litigation

This course examines the principles of legal ethics and professionalism. Our focus will be on identifying and responding to the key issues faced by a civil litigator, and on the model rules of professional conduct, case law, and ethics opinions that a lawyer must consider in resolving such issues. Topics include the formation and termination of the attorney client relationship, conflicts of interest, and communications with the court and opposing counsel through the discovery and trial process. We will examine the balancing of the duty of advocacy with the duty to the administration of justice. We will also explore issues such as admissions, discipline, and common law firm associate dilemmas such as billing and changing law firms. During the semester, students will prepare two short (3-5 pp) memoranda. There will also be an open book in-class exam at the end of the semester.

Course Areas of Practice
Evaluation Methods
  • Final Exam
  • Practical exercises
Degree Requirements
Course Requirements - JD
Course Requirements - LLM
Course Type
  • Lecture
Learning Outcomes
  • Exercise of proper professional and ethical responsibilities to clients and the legal system

Sample Syllabi

Spring 2020

2020
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Days/Times Room

239.01 2
  • Final Exam
  • Practical exercises
Marilyn Forbes Phillips Th 2:00-3:50PM 3041

This course examines the principles of legal ethics and professionalism. Our focus will be on identifying and responding to the key issues faced by a civil litigator, and on the model rules of professional conduct, case law, and ethics opinions that a lawyer must consider in resolving such issues. Topics include the formation and termination of the attorney client relationship, conflicts of interest, and communications with the court and opposing counsel through the discovery and trial process. We will examine the balancing of the duty of advocacy with the duty to the administration of justice. We will also explore issues such as admissions, discipline, and common law firm associate dilemmas such as billing and changing law firms. During the semester, students will prepare two short (3-5 pp) memoranda. There will also be an open book in-class exam at the end of the semester.

Syllabus: 239.01.Spring2020-syllabus.docx33.85 KB

Pre/Co-requisites
None
Enrollment Restrictions
None

Spring 2019

2019
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Days/Times Room

239.01 2
  • Final Exam
  • Practical exercises
Marilyn Forbes Phillips Tu 6:00-7:50 PM 4047

This course examines the principles of legal ethics and professionalism. Our focus will be on identifying and responding to the key issues faced by a civil litigator, and on the model rules of professional conduct, case law, and ethics opinions that a lawyer must consider in resolving such issues. Topics include the formation and termination of the attorney client relationship, conflicts of interest, and communications with the court and opposing counsel through the discovery and trial process. We will examine the balancing of the duty of advocacy with the duty to the administration of justice. We will also explore issues such as admissions, discipline, and common law firm associate dilemmas such as billing and changing law firms. During the semester, students will prepare two short (3-5 pp) memoranda. There will also be an open book in-class exam at the end of the semester.

Pre/Co-requisites
None
Enrollment Restrictions
None

Fall 2016

2016
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Days/Times Room

239.01 2
  • Scheduled in-class examination
  • Practical exercises
Marilyn Forbes Phillips TuTh 5:15-6:10 PM 4047

This course examines the principles of legal ethics and professionalism. Our focus will be on identifying and responding to the key issues faced by a civil litigator, and on the model rules of professional conduct, case law, and ethics opinions that a lawyer must consider in resolving such issues. Topics include the formation and termination of the attorney client relationship, conflicts of interest, and communications with the court and opposing counsel through the discovery and trial process. We will examine the balancing of the duty of advocacy with the duty to the administration of justice. We will also explore issues such as admissions, discipline, and common law firm associate dilemmas such as billing and changing law firms. During the semester, students will prepare two short (3-5 pp) memoranda. There will also be an open book in-class exam at the end of the semester.

Pre/Co-requisites
None
Enrollment Restrictions
None

*Please note that this information is for planning purposes only, and should not be relied upon for the schedule for a given semester. Faculty leaves and sabbaticals, as well as other curriculum considerations, will sometimes affect when a course may be offered.