Children and the Law examines the distribution of power and interactions among the child, the family, and various state agencies. The course will explore the constitutional, statutory and common law rights of parents and children in various settings, including the child welfare system, the juvenile delinquency system, persons in need of supervision and the foster care system. Students will learn the different approaches for the role of the child’s attorney and analyze best practices for representing children in a wide range of legal matters, including tort law, contract law, criminal law, family law. The classroom is primarily lecture-based with opportunities to participate in classroom simulations, petition-drafting, and small group activities.
Explores in depth the legal issues and discrete phenomena of domestic violence. Topics generally include intimate partner violence, criminal prosecution of batterers, child abuse and neglect, gay and lesbian battering, elder abuse, and the basis for intervention of the state.
Provides an overview of legal and policy questions relating to aging individuals and an older and aging society.
Drafting and planning techniques of general application (for both married and unmarried persons and for persons of moderate and little wealth) are emphasized throughout. The course also covers important lifetime directives, including durable powers of attorney for property, health care proxies and living wills. In lieu of an examination, Estate Planning II involves a project. Students form teams of 2 and 3 (although you can work alone should you so choose) and prepare a will and trust for a hypothetical married person, taking into account all relevant tax and non-tax factors. The team or individual can select New York or any other state law in doing the project. The project is designed to give you an experience transferable to actual practice.
Estate Planning I is a prerequisite for Estate Planning II.
Family Law examines state regulation and intrusion into the family and the constitutional limitations and rights therein. The course will introduce students to the primary triad of interests: the parents, the child and the state. Additionally, the course will introduce students to the evolution of families and how family law has responded to social change. Topics will include the varying definitions of a "family", the legal relationships between parent and child, the nature of marriage and civil unions, family after separation or divorce, child custody, paternity/maternity, child support, child abuse and neglect, termination of parental rights, the foster care system, adoption, domestic violence, reproductive rights, privacy, gender and caretaking, and the role of the family court system. Further, the course will examine issues of intersectionality based upon race and socioeconomic class. The classroom is primarily lecture-based with opportunities to participate in classroom simulations, petition-drafting, and small group activities.
Family Law Practicum integrates skills training
into the traditional basic family law course, which focuses on state
intervention in family relationships. Select topics may include: informal
and nontraditional familial relationships, divorce, separation agreements,
property distribution, child custody, spousal and child support, paternity
proceedings, adoption, abuse and neglect proceedings, and the role of the
lawyer as counselor. In addition, the course will include regular skills
training sessions, designed to afford the students the opportunity to learn
skills related to modern family and matrimonial court practice. Final
grade will be based on a final exam (75%) and five simulated exercises
including interviewing, drafting, client counseling, negotiation, and
conducting a direct and cross-examination (25%).
The Family Violence Litigation Clinic offers students challenging and rewarding opportunities to argue cases in court on behalf of persons who have been victimized by violence by intimate partners or family members. Students will learn about domestic violence dynamics and the substantive law and procedure of Family Court. Students will be admitted to the limited practice of law under the Student Practice Order of the Appellate Division, Third Judicial Department. Under direct faculty supervision, students will interview and counsel clients; conduct fact investigation and discovery; draft pleadings, correspondence, motions, stipulations and orders; perform legal research and analysis; regularly appear with clients in court; negotiate cases with opposing counsel as well as the lawyer for the children involved; and conduct full evidentiary trials. Students may also have the opportunity to write or argue an appellate case, conduct administrative hearings, and engage in community outreach.
Pre/Co-Requisite: Domestic Violence Seminar (Must register separately)
This course provides an introduction to practical topics in estate and financial planning, including advance directives for financial management and health care decisions, long term care planning, revocable living trusts and retirement plans. In lieu of an examination, Financial Planning for the Elderly involves a project. Students form teams of two and three (though it is permissable to work alone) and prepare a plan for a hypothetical single person, taking into account all relevant gift and income tax and non-tax factors. The project includes draft documents and an explanatory cover letter to the hypothetical client. This course is designed to provide an experience transferable to practice.
Prerequisite: Trusts and Estates
Discusses the moral and legal issues concerning both ordinary and assisted reproduction. Covers constitutional and common law doctrine on reproductive liberty, government regulation, and medical control over procreative choice, the reproductive autonomy of minors, the effects of advances in cell biology on reproductive issues, and the rights and responsibilities of gamete contributors.
nternational child rights will focus on interpretation and implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). The CRC, adopted by the General Assembly in 1989, is the most-ratified treaty in the world. The CRC addresses a wide variety of themes including discrimination, armed conflicts, prison, family life and education, to list just a few examples. This course will approach the CRC as it is understood by lawyers, by activists, and by academics from all around the world. participants will learn how to research and write in the area of international human rights, with a focus on child rights.
Prior knowledge of International Law and Human Rights is not required. International Child Rights is open to all. Grading will be evaluated on the basis of papers and class participation. There will be no final examination.
Studies substantive and procedural law pertaining to marital dissolution, combining conceptual analysis with practical matters involved in representing a client with a matrimonial problem.
Focuses on laws of interstate succession; execution, revocation, probate, and construction of wills; non-probate transfers; nature and creation of express, resulting and constructive trusts; powers of appointment; and fiduciary administration.
Uses a client-centered approach to develop skills in using active listening, dealing with difficult clients, building questioning techniques, developing theories, identifying alternatives and consequences, and engendering client decision-making.
Uses simulations to expose students to the skills necessary to prepare for and draft transactional documents designed to express a legal right, privilege, function, duty, status, or disposition.
Explores bioethics issues such as clinical decision making, informed consent, organ donation and transplantation, physician assisted suicide, ethics in managed care, death and dying, and medical research.
Focuses on general lifetime estate planning and estate planning at death based on the study of the relevant federal wealth transfer and income tax rules.
Prerequisite: Trusts and Estates
Dozens of field placement opportunities exist for second- third-year students. They spend a minimum of 10 hours per week at their field placement site and participate in a one-hour weekly seminar.
Note that most field placements need to be topic related and approved by a concentration advisor to count toward a degree.
Examines legal issues involved in guardianship for minors and adults unable to make decisions for themselves.
This survey course covers several topics essential to an understanding of the health-care system and the issues confronting health-care lawyers today. The topics are: health-care delivery systems; quality of and access to health care (including medical malpractice, institutional liability, and allocation of health-care resources); health-care professionals' rights and responsibilities (including professional licensure/discipline and institutional peer review); and patients' rights (including informed consent, advance directives, surrogate decisionmaking, research involving human subjects, determination of death, and anatomical gifts).
Focuses on in-class presentations by students on legal and ethical issues present in the medical records of hypothetical obstetrical or gynecological patients. Law students work in teams with resident physicians in obstetrics and gynecology.
Introduces negotiation skills, offering hands-on experience preparing for and negotiating legal issues.
Explores the response of the legal system to issues of human sexuality and the influence of legal norms on perception and understanding of human sexuality. Focuses on availability and limitations of constitutional and statutory protection for sexual privacy, expression, and equality. Surveys approaches of feminist and gay legal theorists to such questions as identity representation and performance. Uses legal and theoretical frameworks to examine issues in particular contexts, including the family, the workplace, public schools, the media, the U.S. military, and the criminal law.
Provides exposure to technical skills needed to represent clients successfully in estate matters. Emphasizes procedural aspects of estate work and precise methodology to present the client's case, as petitioner or objectant.
Written under faculty supervision on a relevant aspect of family and/or elder law. Must qualify for the law school's upperclass writing requirement, and may or may not be used to satisfy that requirement.
(Effective June 22, 2015)