Instructor(s): Albert Yoon

This course provides an introduction to civil legal process. We will focus on legal thinking, rules and processes of civil procedure and dispute resolution. After a short introduction to the legal system, pleadings, and some theories of procedure, we will consider the rules, statutes, and common-law doctrines governing parties and proceedings in three stages. First we will discuss the grounds on which parties and claims may be heard or excluded as a threshold matter. This section of the course deals with standing, justiciability, intervention, limitation periods, and relitigation. Next, we will discuss strategic interaction in the course of litigation. This section of the course deals with jurisdiction, preliminary relief, discovery, confidentiality, and summary judgment. Last, we will discuss class proceedings, which provide a relatively new means of addressing certain harms for which conventional litigation may be inappropriate. The focus, during all of these discussions, will be on the rationales for the rules, standards, and doctrines that govern legal procedure, in light of the various interests that must be accommodated: the plaintiff’s desire to be heard, the defendant’s wish to avoid needless litigation, the efforts of non-parties to have their interests represented, the needs of potential future litigants to have the law clearly set out on the basis of accurate information, and the public’s demand for an effective and efficient system. Not all of these demands can be accommodated at the same time. We will discuss the rationales for the current system and the potential for reform.

Attendance, class participation, and a short writing assignment (10%); and a closed-book final examination (90%) not to exceed two hours, which may include multiple-choice questions as well as a fact pattern followed by a series of questions.

At a Glance

Second Term


72 JD


T: 9:30 - 10:45
Th: 9:30 - 10:45