421.01 Pre-Trial Litigation
This practical skills course focuses on the path civil litigators must navigate prior to trial. It is becoming increasingly rare for cases to be decided by a jury. Lawyers must instead learn to succeed during the pretrial process. We will examine the key components of the civil pretrial litigation process, beginning with the filing of a law suit. The class will be divided into law firms on the second week of class. You will work with co-counsel, representing a hypothetical client, for the entire semester. Law firms will prepare and serve discovery and respond to discovery from opposing counsel. Students will prepare and argue a short discovery motion. The last four weeks of class focus on depositions, with each student taking and defending a deposition. This course will help students synthesize and more deeply understand the strategy and the practical application of civil procedure and evidence rules used in litigation advocacy.
- Drafting pleadings and motions
- Preparing and responding to discovery
- Taking and defending depositions
- Practicing becoming a more effective advocate in the current on-line environment facing all attorneys and courts.
The course grade is based on written and practical skills-based work product and class participation, as described in the syllabus. There is not a final exam.
|Course Number||Course Credits||Evaluation Method||Instructor|
|Marilyn Forbes Phillips, Judge Robert Numbers|
|Sakai site: https://sakai.duke.edu/portal/site/LAW.421.01.F20|
|Email list: LAW.421.01.F20@sakai.duke.edu|