Randy J. Kozel

Associate Professor of Law

Office: 2118 Eck Hall of Law
Phone: 574.631.2727
Fax: 574.631.8078
Email: rkozel@nd.edu
Staff Assistant: Beth Ferrettie
SSRN: View

Randy J. Kozel joined the Law School faculty in 2011 and served as a Visiting Professor at the London Law Centre in 2013. He was named the Distinguished Teacher of the Year by the Class of 2014.

Professor Kozel teaches and researches in fields including constitutional law, federal courts, and contract law, with a particular focus on the role of precedent in legal decisionmaking. He has presented his work at conferences in the United States, United Kingdom, and China.

Professor Kozel’s article, “Settled Versus Right: Constitutional Method and the Path of Precedent,” was recently published in the Texas Law Review and examines the relationship between interpretive theory and the strength of judicial precedent. In “The Scope of Precedent,” which is forthcoming in the Michigan Law Review, Professor Kozel extends this analysis to the process for defining a judicial decision’s scope of applicability for future cases. And in “Original Meaning and the Precedent Fallback,” which is forthcoming in the Vanderbilt Law Review, he focuses on the role of precedent within the originalist school of constitutional interpretation.

Professor Kozel received his J.D., magna cum laude, from Harvard Law School, where he was the Articles Committee Chair of the Harvard Law Review. He served as a law clerk for Justice Anthony M. Kennedy at the U.S. Supreme Court, and for Judge Alex Kozinski at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. He has also practiced as a litigator with a large law firm and as Special Counsel to the General Counsel at General Electric Company.

Courses Taught

Freedom of Speech
Legal Change Seminar


Selected Publications

The Scope of Precedent, 113 Michigan Law Review (forthcoming)

Original Meaning and the Precedent Fallback, 65 Vanderbilt Law Review (forthcoming)

Institutional Autonomy and Constitutional Structure, 112 Michigan Law Review 101 (2014)

Settled Versus Right: Constitutional Method and the Path of Precedent, 91 Texas Law Review 1843 (2013). Republished as abridged in Precedent on the U.S. Supreme Court: Theory and Practice (Christopher J. Peters, ed.) (2014)

The Rule of Law and the Perils of Precedent, 111 Michigan Law Review First Impressions 37 (2013)

Precedent and Reliance, 62 Emory Law Journal 1459 (2013)

Free Speech and Parity: A Theory of Public Employee Rights, 53 William & Mary Law Review 1985 (2012). Republished as abridged at The Legal Workshop

Administrative Change, 59 UCLA Law Review 112 (2011) (with Jeff Pojanowski)

Stare Decisis as Judicial Doctrine, 67 Washington & Lee Law Review 411 (2010)

Reconceptualizing Public Employee Speech, 99 Northwestern University Law Review 1007 (2005)

Solving the Nuisance-Value Settlement Problem: Mandatory Summary Judgment, 90 Virginia Law Review 1849 (2004) (with David Rosenberg)

Note, Locating Investment Asymmetries and Optimal Deterrence in the Mass Tort Class Action, 117 Harvard Law Review 2665 (2004)

Areas of Expertise

  • Constitutional Law
  • Constitutional Theory
  • Contracts
  • Federal Courts
  • Free Speech & Expressive Association
  • Judicial Process
  • Precedent & Legal Change
  • Stare Decisis
  • Supreme Court of the United States

In the News

Commencement Address delivered to the Class of 2014, May 17, 2014
Leading U.S. and U.K. Scholars to Gather at Notre Dame London Centre to Address "International Perspectives on Public Law"
Roundtable Gives Leading Scholars Opportunity to Discuss “The Constitution and Unwritten Law” at NDLS
Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy Visits NDLS London Law Program