S. Pretrial Commercial Litigation

Course Information

Course Number
Curriculum Level
Areas of Study
Civil Procedure and Dispute Resolution, Commercial Law and Transactions
Additional Attributes
LLM NY Bar Exam Qualifier, Experiential Credit

Section 001 Information


Section Description

Most commercial lawsuits never get tried, either because they are settled beforehand or because one side wins a pretrial motion that decides the case. Thus, litigators must master the techniques of pretrial advocacy. This course builds those skills, so as to provide students with a good grounding before they enter practice, particularly at large firms. The class will be split into a plaintiff's team and a defendant's team, and the teams will litigate a commercial case from the filing of a complaint through summary judgment. Students will draft pleadings, discovery requests and motions, seek and oppose injunctive relief, make oral arguments and take and defend depositions. The simulation will be supplemented by short readings. The case will involve a recurring, real-world situation: the raiding by one firm of the key employees of a competitor. Students will learn aspects of substantive employment and commercial tort law as well as comparative federal and New York procedural law. The course will be graded based on completion of several short drafting assignments as well as class participation.

School Year & Semester
Spring 2024
JGH 546
Class meets on
  • Monday
6:20 pm - 8:10 pm
Method of Evaluation
J.D Writing Credit?
Minor (automatic)

Learning Outcomes

  • Drafting concise, precise and persuasive litigation documents.
  • Gathering facts thoroughly from clients and witnesses.
  • Understanding the purposes of different procedural rules and how and why litigators choose among them to advance their clients' interests.
  • Addressing ethical issues that arise in real world litigation.
  • Practicing oral advocacy.

Course Limitations

Instructor Pre-requisites
Instructor Co-Requisites
Recommended Courses
Other Limitations
Limited to 16 students