LONDON LAW LECTURES: UPDATE

New recordings by Gianni Vuolo and Anne Street added to London Law Lectures website.

PROPERTY LAW: Easements

For a right to be held as an easement it must, by its nature, be capable of amounting to an easement, and secondly, it must be shown that it was acquired in an appropriate way.

Characteristics of easements: This recording by Gianni Vuolodeals with the first of these matters: whether a right has the required characteristics to be capable of being held as an easement.

Acquisition of easements: This recording by Anne Street deals with the second issue – whether a valid enforceable easement was correctly acquired. Anne also gives advice on how to structure an answer to a problem question on easements.

For more information please CLICK HERE
MORE RECORDINGS

 

First Hand Guide to 1L Courses – Criminal Law

From the excellent Law School Toolbox website:

Understanding what classes you will encounter in your first year will give you the one-up on the rest of your classmates. You do not need a full, in-depth understanding about what these classes entail, especially since each law school follows a different curriculum. However, it is a good idea to understand an overview of each course so you feel comfortable on your first day and comprehend the context of this subject of law. One of the first classes you encounter as a 1L is Criminal Law.

Different than TV??

Unlike many other 1L courses like Torts, most incoming 1Ls have had the most exposure to Criminal Law and feel the most comfortable with this subject. Why is this? Well, many legal dramas revolve around crime and the legal system (think Law & Order, any detective show, etc.). However, the “criminal law” you see on TV versus the Criminal Law you will see in class and in your casebook are vastly different. Yes, there will still be crimes of murder, theft, rape, etc. but how you study them and engage in the subject are much different that how Detective Benson solves crimes. It is best to keep this in mind at the forefront, that way you aren’t confused halfway through the semester.

Common Law Rules (!)

To make law school more confusing for 1Ls, Criminal Law is divided into two jurisdiction categories: MPC-based jurisdictions (more on this in a minute) and Common Law based jurisdictions. I highly (HIGHLY) suggest separating these in your mind and notes right from the get-go because you will need to know both come exam time, and it can be very confusing trying to figure out both. Common law jurisdictions are states in which their statutes are based off the “common law” or judge’s decisions from previous cases. Basically, the common law is based on how other cases were decided and set precedent.

The Good, the Bad, and the MPC

The other side of Criminal Law is based on the MPC. In 1962, a group of Criminal Law scholars came together to create the “MPC” or the Model Penal Code. This is a code that formulates all offenses, elements, defenses, and information on crimes in a concise, organized manner. The intention was to consolidate the authority on Criminal Law so that decisions would be more regulated and consistent, rather than the Common Law counterpart. However, many states did not completely adopt the MPC but have created their own penal code with MPC influence.

What Do Students Do in Clinics?

From Law School Cafe:

Douglas Kahn has posted an article criticizing the “proliferation of clinical and other experiential courses” in legal education. These courses, he argues, reduce the number of “doctrinal” courses that students take, leaving them “ill-prepared to practice law as soon after graduation as law firms would like.” The TaxProf Blog posted a summary of the article, and a baker’s dozen of readers have offered pro and con comments.

It’s an old debate, one that has bristled for more than 50 years. The discussion doesn’t surprise me, but Professor Kahn’s ignorance of clinical education does. His bold assertions about clinics reveal little familiarity with the actual operation of those courses. Let’s examine some of Kahn’s claims.

“[S]kills in legal reasoning, analysis, and statutory construction are best learned in doctrinal courses . . . .”

Seminar sessions in a clinic “likely are more focused on the delivery of legal services than on the analysis of legal issues and policies.”

“Much of th[e] time [in clinical courses] can be spent in ways that have little or no educational value (such as sitting in court waiting for a case to be called).”

“Another reason [to prefer simulation courses] is that the instructor in a simulation course can control the issues that will arise rather than . . . depend on what issues a client brings.”

One can, as Professor Kahn suggests, debate the appropriate balance among doctrinal, experiential, and (I would add) interdisciplinary, perspective, and seminar courses in law school. But to have an intelligent debate, we need to know the content of those course types. Professor Kahn’s article reflects many of the stereotypes that educators hold about clinical and other experiential courses. Let’s learn the facts before we begin to negotiate: that’s a key lesson we teach in clinics.

Study Guides: Lower prices, PDF downloads added, and Apple Pay option!

Now that Legal Yankee has partnered with Sulis International Press to publish our law school resource books, there are lower prices and the option to buy as a PDF for immediate download.

Prices range from 14.95-29.95, depending on the course level and format. Here are the available study guides (click for more info, pricing, and format options.

 

Legal Yankee Publications is now an Imprint of Sulis International. We publish study guides, learning resources, and reference material for law students in the United Kingdom, the United States, and other common law countries. If you have a manuscript you would like to submit for possible publication, visit the submission page at Sulis International here.

Sulis International is a modern small press that partners with authors to produce and promote select fiction and nonfiction. Print-on-demand, eBooks, and social media marketing results in lower costs for the publisher and therefore higher royalties to the authors. Visit Sulis International here.

How Lawyers Use Evernote

From Rocket Matters Legal Productivity website:

Evernote is more than a note-taking application. We use it to store ideas, recordings, projects, tasks, images…The list is as comprehensive as we want it to be. Evernote allows us to offload our brain and organize our lives.

And how do lawyers use Evernote? I asked a few Evernote-loving lawyers. Here are their stories.

See also: A Lawyer’s Guide to Evernote E-Book

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