Fundamentals of American Law for LL.M Foreign-Trained Lawyers

This course introduces foreign-trained lawyers to the U.S. legal system. U.S. law differs from that of many other countries in two major respects. First, it has its own version of federalism in which states and the federal government have their own legal systems that interact in important and sometimes complex ways. Second, it is a system based on a common-law perspective even though most U.S. law is either statutory or regulatory. The course not only teaches students the structure of U.S. law, based largely on the U.S. Constitution, but introduces them to its discourse. There is particular focus on written assignments, so that students may begin to develop the skills necessary to communicate using American legal English. At the conclusion of this course, students will understand the structure and discourse of U.S. law. This course is required for all LL.M. students and is taught in an intensive format every August.

Grading and Method of Evaluation:
Pass/fail only. Students will be graded on an in-class final exam.