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Appellate Advocacy*

Course Abbreviation: 
SKILS 997A Fall 2014
Credit Only: N Anon Gr: N

Following a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) enforcement action from inception through an appeal in the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, and a subsequent appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, this course will teach students key concepts of appellate procedure, and provide students with practical experience in using persuasive advocacy skills when drafting appellate briefs and making an oral argument to an appellate court.  Class discussions will explore the decision making processes of appellate lawyers so that students better understand (1) the thoroughness of the analytical skills that appellate lawyers must employ; (2) the knowledge of litigation and appellate procedure that appellate lawyers must possess; (3) the strategic and tactical decisions that appellate lawyers must make when writing appellate briefs; and (4) the ability to think and react quickly that appellate lawyers must have when arguing before an appellate court.  The course will begin with some basic instruction in SEC enforcement actions, the basic substantive securities laws that govern the appellate case that will be studied, and appellate procedural rules.  The course will then teach advocacy skills in writing and oral argument by following the SEC enforcement action through its principal phases, from the complaint, the motion to dismiss, and the appellate briefs and arguments before the D.C. Circuit and the U.S. Supreme Court.

*Special topic course