Academics - Course Descriptions
The following alphabetical list of course descriptions are proposed for the academic year. Specific details regarding which courses will be offered during a particular term are available from the program director.
Lecture hours per week, laboratory and/or tutorial hours per week, and credits each term are in parentheses.
The Law School Administration reserves the right to alter the course offerings to meet faculty interest, student interest, and the administrative needs of the Law School and the London Law Program.
Business Associations – Law 74101
Studies American agency, partnership and corporate law. The first part of the course explores what makes a business entity a corporation, but includes consideration of other business forms such as sole proprietorships and partnerships. The second part of the course addresses the operation of the corporation, and considers internal and external forms of control and regulation. Both parts of the course emphasize the substantive law as well as compliance with statutory formalities such as are contained in the Delaware Corporation Code.
Carriage of Goods by Sea– Law 74453
This course looks at the carriage of goods in international trade. We live in a world in which the transportation of goods is a fundamental part of both international and domestic business, and litigation in respect of these carriage disputes is inevitable. The course is based on English Law, with comparisons made with practice under other jurisdictions where appropriate. English law is frequently chosen to govern shipping contracts, the common law nature of English law allowing for judicial “creativity.” We see, therefore, the development of this area of contract law, which aims to meet the needs of those involved with the international shipment of goods. The course predominately covers contacts for the carriage of goods by sea and charterparties, as most goods are shipped by this mode of transport, although carriage by air and land is introduced. The course also considers difficulties that arise when goods are the subject of a multimodal contract of carriage, and problems that arise when carriage contracts are negotiated by freight forwarders. The combination of the intellectual rigors of the law and trade realities make this a rewarding subject.
Analyzes comparatively: legal concepts; law-making and law-finding in civil law and in common law; the purposes and functions of the comparative method; the history, methods and uses of comparative law; the legal families of the world; and the spirit and style of various legal systems.
English Legal History – LAW 74836
This course looks at three main developments: (1)Common Law. The rise of private law through the writ system and the centralisation of justice by the Angevin kings. The protection of land by writs of right and the possessory assizes and the development of other actions as offshoots from this via Trespass and Actions upon the Case. The common law courts at Westminster and the development of Equity. The growth of a legal profession, a professional judiciary and legal literature. (2)Public Law.The King as Head of state and the making of law with his council, the Curia Regis. The development of Parliament and the growth of the Commons. The Council in Tudor times and conciliar courts such as Star Chamber. Change and reaction in Stuart times. The English Civil War, the Glorious Revolution and the development of democratic institutions and universal franchise.(3)Criminal Law. How criminal law developed from a personal wrong into a breach of the King’s Peace. The development in the middle ages from a system based on providence to one where man judged the actions of others. Conflict with the Church and clerical privilege. Specific offences, the burden of proof and the maintenance of order. Political opposition as treason and sedition and Tudor developments. The uses of punishment as vehicles of social control. Protection of property, especially in the eighteenth century. The reforming initiatives of the nineteenth century.
English Legal System
Introduces the basic elements of the modern English legal system. Examines and analyzes: the source and the importance of English law; the court structure and the people involved in it; civil and criminal procedure; alternatives to the court; and access to justice.
European Employment Law
This course has three parts. In the first part, we will look at European Labor Law. In doing that, we will consider the relevant treaty provisions and the relevant provisions of European Directives relating to Equality, Working Conditions, Employee Rights on Restructuring Enterprises and Worker Representation. In the second part, we will examine aspects of Private International Law relating to Labor Law, including the Brussels Regulations and the Rome Convention on Applicable Law. In the third part, we will consider international labor standards and the work of the International Labor Organization.
European Union Law – Law 74459
(3-0-3) Horspool and Humphreys
This course introduces students to the legal system of the European Union (EU) and the substantive law of the internal market. Constitutional, administrative, commercial and trade law of the EU are all covered. The topics which will be discussed in this course include the political and economic origins of the EU, its institutional structures (with emphasis on the Court of Justice of the European Union), the Treaties, the interrelationship between Union Law and the laws of the twenty seven member States, and the four freedoms: the free movement of goods, workers, capital and services. The course will concentrate on the transnational protection of economic and social rights, the jurisprudence of the Court of Justice and the particular contribution made by the Court in the development of the four freedoms. There will also be a brief examination of other subjects that are intertwined with the market and European Union policy: competition law, environmental protection, discrimination, and external relations.
Studies the American system of rules and standards that regulates the admission at trial of proof to establish controverted facts. Considers the traditional rules at length, and examines the U.S. Federal Rules of Evidence in this context.
History and Theory of Intellectual Property
Intellectual property is a relatively new area of law—humans created, invented, and branded long before the advent of copyright, patents and trademarks. This course considers both the history and development of intellectual property law, with a particular focus on Britain and the United States, and the theories posed to justify its existence. Students will read and discuss classic works of intellectual property scholarship alongside more recent work on IP history and theory in order to better understand the origins of modern day legal regimes and analyze the coherence and legitimacy of contemporary law.
International Arbitration—Law 74435
This course will introduce international commercial and investor-State arbitration. Arbitration is one of the oldest forms of dispute resolution, but it has grown in importance along with the spread of globalisation. It is now the most favoured form of international dispute resolution. During this course, we will consider why arbitration works so well to resolve international disputes. We will study the complex legal framework within which international commercial and investor-State arbitrations take place. We will also study some of the treaties that support that framework, including the New York Convention of 1958, which imposes an obligation on national courts around the world to recognize and enforce international arbitration agreements and awards. We will also study the procedural aspects of international arbitration, which are characterized by neutrality, confidentiality, party autonomy and flexibility. These characteristics, along with the enforceability of arbitral awards, are the keys to international arbitration’s popularity and success.
International Environmental Law – Law 74331
This course examines the role of international law in the protection of the earth’s environment. It views the international organizations that develop environmental laws and policy, and the roles, rights, and obligations of states in enacting and enforcing those laws. Environmental issues covered include environmental disasters, transboundary air pollution, climate change, marine pollution, hazardous waste, the law of war and environmental protection, freshwater resources, biodiversity and wildlife conservation, protection of habitat, and how international disputes in these areas are settled.
International Human Rights
International Human Rights Law is a survey course which includes a description of the international and regional instruments and institutions and their mechanisms and remedies, followed by consideration of substantive rights and their interpretations by those bodies. The relationship between international and national standards is also considered. Students are expected to participate in classes and to be aware of current developments and issues concerning human rights. Use of online resources is encouraged.
Studies: the nature and sources of international law; the role of municipal rules in international law; international personality; recognition; territorial entities; jurisdiction; immunities; state responsibility; the law of treaties; and settlement of international disputes.
International Organizations Law
International organizations (“IOs”) are at the forefront of almost every aspect of international relations and the global economy. From the United Nations to the World Bank, and the International Criminal Court to the International Atomic Energy Agency, IOs are indispensable to modern world affairs.
An IO is typically defined as a treaty-based intergovernmental entity, constituted by states, with a legal identity separate from state members. It has international legal personality and privileges and immunities within national legal systems consistent with its functions. The implications and exercise of these attributes is the subject of international organizations law.
This course examines the legal issues and controversies common to all IOs, irrespective of object and purposes. Through a study of applicable legal principles and practices it considers underlying themes of world governance and accountability. It also facilitates a good working knowledge of the diverse IO community.
Covers the contractual relationships that arise in international trade, and the trade terms that arise and are unlikely to appear in other contractual areas. This area of law developed in the mercantile courts, which developed the law merchant in response to disputes that arose between parties who frequently were trading from different countries and who needed speedy resolution of their disputes. The law merchant comprised a mixture of local trading customs and law as well as foreign rules the substance or recognized trading practice. The course includes discussion of topics such as jurisdiction, arbitration, bills of lading, remedies, insurance, and payment and finance.
Introduction to the American Legal System
Surveys American legal institutions and principles of the American common-law system. Includes a study of the role of the three branches of government — judicial, legislative and executive — in making, interpreting and enforcing law; the role of precedent, statutes, secondary sources, etc., in determining law; the structure of the American court system; the nature of the American federal system and the relationships between state and federal governments; the differences between civil and criminal laws; the role of the U.S. Constitution in defining legal relationships, rights and duties; and a description of the processes of both civil and criminal litigation in American courts, from initiation of an action through trial and appeal.
This course is required of all students in the London LL.M. Programme who did not graduate from an American law school. American law-school graduates cannot take this course for credit toward the LL.M. degree.
Introduction to the Russian Legal System – LAW 74462
This course aims to give the student an understanding of the Russian Legal System from a developmental perspective. It allows the student to appreciate within the context of the Soviet and Russian legal systems different views of the role of law in society, how these may change over time, and see the development and working of a codified legal system with a tradition of a strong social ideology.
Affords students the opportunity to confront the question that Justice Cardozo presented in his famous work on the judicial process: “What is it that I do when I decide a case?” Through readings and class discussion, explores the intellectual roots of the American judicial tradition and addresses the problems that confront that tradition in the modern American courtroom. When is it legitimate for judges to make law, and when not? Explores critically how the judicial role varies in cases involving the common law, statutory interpretation, administrative review, and constitutional adjudication. Helps students appreciate how judges – trial and appellate – go about the craft of deciding a case, in the hope that the student, once admitted to practice, will be better equipped practically and intellectually to be a successful advocate. Students may choose term paper or take-home examination.
Jurisprudence – LAW 74821
Considers philosophical aspects of the law involving questions such as: whether a necessary condition of a legal system is that it possess some moral quality; what morality the law should enforce — whether solely a majority view or whether unpopular deviant groups should be protected as well; the meaning of justice; and whether the law and the courts fulfill their social function. Considers various schools of thought, including the views of the Naturalists and Positivists as well as Sociological Jurisprudence, American Realism and Marxism.
Law and Cultural Heritage
The course will introduce students to the legal principles underpinning transactions in art and cultural heritage, looking at both civil and criminal law. It will examine the ways in which a person may assert a valid title to an object, and the ways in which he or she may recover that object when it has been lost, stolen or looted. The mobility of works of art is a significant feature in the contemporary art world, and the course will look at the ways in which such movement is both encouraged and, in some cases, hindered. Intangible rights, including copyright and moral rights, will be examined, together with methods of dispute resolution.
The Law of War – Law 74468
An introduction to the Laws of War in contemporary international law and International practice. Studies the legal framework of conduct of hostilities, Jus ad bellum and jus in bello under the UN Charter, International Humanitarian law and International Human Rights Law. Also considers the different types of armed conflicts including the concept of armed conflict, the distinction between international and non-international armed conflicts, reasons and relativity of the distinction and comparison of the two regimes, and contemporary problems of qualification and practical consequences.
Legislation & Regulation
This course seeks to provide the understanding of the legislative and administrative process that is needed to practice law in the United States in the twenty-first century. It is based on a course that students are required to take in their first year at the Harvard Law School in order “to bring the first-year law school curriculum more in line with the realities of modern legal practice and the structure of our legal system – in particular, the centrality of statutes and regulations,” and “to teach students how judges and administrative interpreters construe these legal materials.” The course includes three sections: (1) an initial overview of the law of the lawmaking process; (2) an introduction to statutory interpretation; and (3) an analysis of the regulatory process. It also includes several skills components requiring the drafting of a proposed statute and commenting on proposed administrative regulations. The course thus provides a foundation for the numerous classes that study specific statutory and regulatory schemes. There is no prerequisite for the course. Students who have already taken either Statutory Interpretation or Administrative Law may not take Legislation & Regulation.
Seminar devoted to topics of interest to LL.M. students. Features lectures by and discussions with visiting speakers.
This course is required of and limited to students in the LL.M. program in international comparative law.
Requires written work of substantial quality completed under the direction of a faculty sponsor.
This course is limited to students in the LL.M. program in international comparative law. It may be taken for 1 to 4 semester credits.
London Internship – Law 74731
Students may work for employers in exchange for academic credit. The intern must work a total of sixty hours to receive one credit or one-hundred twenty hours to receive two credits. Maximum credits per year: 2.