Litigation Skills Program

Miami Law’s highly acclaimed Litigation Skills Program invites students to engage in rigorous, hands-on training providing them with the practical skills necessary for competent professional legal service. Taught by a faculty of experienced trial lawyers and judges, 60 percent of second and third year law students enroll in this six-credit course. Students who do particularly well are given awards and scholarships.

This program offers unmatched training -- other law schools typically teach trial advocacy as an intensive course delivered over a short period of time. Miami Law's Lit Skills Program offers a comprehensive litigation skills course open to all students who wish to participate and it includes pretrial skills and far more hours. Students who take lit skills learn to: write trial briefs, prep for trial, prepare witnesses and gain invaluable courtroom experience

 Litigation Skills I Course

The Litigation Skills I course is comprised of weekly lectures supplemented by pretrial and trial workshops that each meet once a week. Students enrolled learn how to litigate a case from start to finish by developing a full range of both pretrial and trial practice skills such as: Client interviewing, pleading, deposition and discovery, investigation, arguing motions and negotiation. Students also receive instruction in trial advocacy skills including: jury selection, opening statements, direct and cross examination, objections, exhibits, trial technology and closing argument.

The course culminates in a highly anticipated Final Trial where students bring together the skills they have acquired throughout the semester and conduct a mock trial. Students receive candid critique and feedback from the practitioners who have worked with them throughout the semester.

Litigation Skills I is open to all second and third year law students who have successfully completed Evidence.Final grades are determined based on student participation and performance in classroom simulations, as well as performance in a mid-semester bench trial and  the final trial.
Fall 2015 Litigation Skills I Syllabus

 Litigation Skills II Course

Litigation Skill II is a 3 credit course in advanced litigation where students learn instruction in jury selection, expert witnesses, multi-party or multi-claim lawsuits. Students have the option to take either Advanced Business Litigation Skills or Advanced Criminal Litigation Skills. All courses are taught by leading trial lawyers and judges.  Litigation Skills II is open to students who have successfully completed Litigation Skills I.
Fall 2015 Advanced Criminal Litigation Skills II Syllabus
Fall 2015 Advanced Business Litigation Skills II Syllabus

 Litigation Skills Externship Program

Additionally, Miami Law's program is unique in that students who graduate from the course are placed in our six-credit externship program in which they are certified by the Supreme Court of Florida to engage in the supervised practice of law. Miami Law's unique Litigation Skills Externship Program provides students with the opportunity to apply the trial and pre-trial skills learned during the semester in a live client setting. Students may represent clients in criminal and civil matters and argue cases in Circuit, County and Federal courts under the supervision of practicing attorneys. Externs are placed locally, nationally and internationally.

Prerequisites: Successful completion of Litigation Skills I is a prerequisite for the Externship. Students will also become certified by the Supreme Court of Florida as Certified Legal Interns.

Enrolling in the Externship Program
Students elect to participate in the externship program one semester in advance when they register for Litigation Skills I. All externships are worth 6-credits and require a commitment of 220 hours of service. Students also attend a weekly Clinical Placement and Theory Seminar providing training in advanced skills and professional responsibility. While externships are available during the semester after Litigation Skills I, many students choose to do a summer placement. Students who are placed outside of the Miami area enroll in an online weekly seminar.

Past Externship Placements

  • Patent and Trade Office
  • U.S. Coast Guard
  • State Attorney's Office
  • IRS
  • Securities and Exchange Commission
  • Legal Aid
  • Department of Justice
  • Better Business Bureau
  • Public Defender's Office

Externship Advisor: Hazel Nicholson, Program Assistant
305-284-2314
hnichols@law.miami.edu

Course Registration Process

The Litigation Skills department has a separate registration process which is done internally and completed earlier than regular law course registration. Students interested in taking Litigation Skills should visit the Lit Skills Course Registration in Courses & Registration area of the web.  

Juror Registration

To register and participate as a juror the Litigation Skills final trials, click here

FACULTY

The Lit Skills Program is taught by experienced trial lawyers and judges and a position to teach in the program is a sought after role.

Litigation Skills Adjunct Faculty

Laura Adams
Richard Allen
Alex Alvarez
Robert Amsel
Jerald Bagley
Gary Bagliebter
Ana Barnett
Steven P. Befera
David Bercuson
Stanford Blake
Beth Bloom
Laura Bonn
Eric Bustillo
Beatrice Butchko
Michael B. Chavies
Christopher Clark
Jeffrey M. Cohen
Marcia Cooke
Benjamin Daniel
David L. Deehl
Joseph DeMaria
Ronald Dresnick
Pedro Echarte
Mark Eiglarsh
Joseph Farina
Allyson Fritz

Barry Garber
Edith Georgi
Ervin Gonzalez
Maria P. Gonzalez
Jonathan Goodman
Alan J. Greenstein
Ken Hartmann
Alice Hector
David Heffernan
Kevin Hellmann
Celeste Higgins
Kathleen Hoague
Paul C. Huck
Virginia Johnson
Jeanne Jontiff
Martin Kahn
Elizabeth Katzen
Carroll Kelly
Stephen Kramer
Jed Kurzban
Abraham Laeser
Ellen Leesfield
Guy Lewis
Bruce Lyons
Jose Martinez
Matthew Menchel
Marilyn Milian
 
Craig Montz
Federico Moreno
Philip Nicholas III
Gertrude M. Novicki
John J. O'Sullivan
William Pearson
Kathleen Phang
Bonnie Phillips-Williams
Victoria Platzer
David Raben
Tucker Ronzetti
David Rothman
Thomas G. Schultz
Jacqueline Scola
Lourdes Simon
Samuel J. Smargon
Rodolfo Sorondo
Hon. Bertila Soto
Lee Stapleton
Sarah Steinbaum
M. Patrick Sullivan
John Thornton, Jr.
Edwin G. Torres
Harley Tropin
Diane M. Van Ness
Ellen Sue Venzer

Litigation Skills Clinical Externships Faculty

Ian Anderson
Robert Angueira
Martin Basson
Randall C. Berg
William L. Blagg
Julie Bru
Maria Capo-Sanders
Juanita Cendan
Jody Collins
Laurie Collins
Leonard Elias
Heidi Feinan
Jorge L. Fernandez
Wilfredo Fernandez
Katherine Fernandez-Rundle
Howard Finkelstein
Mary Ann Flannigan
Rhoda Glasco-Foderingham
Jeffrey Hearne
Don Horn
Richard Jurgen
Karen Kuhn
Morton Laitner
Sharon Langer
Janet Lewis
George Lopez
Pury Lopez-Santiago
Christopher Martin
Sharon Matthews-Swain
Victoria Mendez
Barbara J. Mitchell
Margaret Nocero
Kenneth Noto
Elizabeth Parker
Richard Polin
Susan Porter
Paul Rashkind
Nelson Rodney
Kevin Rosen
Ilenia Sanchez-Bryson
Rose Schindler
Christopher Smith
Rory S. Stein
Eugene Steinfeld
Karen St. Cry
Debora Turner
Robert Scott Walker
Robert Wilder
Dawn Wynn
Lisa Zamora

CONTACT INFORMATION

Litigation Skills Office
3rd Floor, A310
Kozyak, Tropin & Throckmorton Suite
Phone: 305-284-2303
E-mail: litskill@law.miami.edu

Juror Registration: Participate as a juror the Litigation Skills final trials 
Student Registration: Register for the Lit Skills Program

Litigation Skills Staff

Professor Laurence Rose has more than 30 years' experience training lawyers and directs our acclaimed Litigation Skills Program.
Director
305-284-2303
lrose@law.miami.edu

Lydia Sanchez
Program Manager
305-284-3301
lsanchez@law.miami.edu

Hazel Nicholson 
Program Assistant and Externship Advisor
305-284-2314
hnichols@law.miami.edu