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First-Day Assignments

Before the start of each semester, this page will include information about assignments your professors would like you to complete before the first class. Please check back in the weeks leading up to the fall, spring and summer sessions.

Spring 2016

Advanced International Trade Law (Bhala)
Review Syllabus (available on tables by student hanging files on the second floor.)

Required Reading: International Trade Law, Volume II, Chapter 58.

Please start thinking about your paper topic. Optional Reading: Modern GATT Law, Volume II, Chapters 70-73.

Advanced Legal Research (Wilson)
Sign up on teachinglaw.com and read Introduction to Legal Research located at https://teachinglaw.com/researchSources/introduction. This includes all sections from The American Legal System through A Research Plan Example: From Start to Finish.

Advanced Litigation (Prater)
Come to the first class.

Alternative Dispute Resolution (Fairchild)
There is no ADR assignment for the first day; however, syllabus and course description are posted on Blackboard.

Banking Law (Kalahurka)
Students are expected to read pages 1-38 of the required text (referenced below) prior to the first day of class. Students are also strongly encouraged (but not required) to see the movie “The Big Short” (now playing in theaters).

Required Text: Richard Scott Carnell, Jonathan R. Macey, Geoffrey P. Miller, The Law of Financial Institutions (Aspen Publishers, 5th ed. 2013).

Bankruptcy (Ware)
The required casebook is Elizabeth Warren et al., The Law of Debtors and Creditors (7th ed., 2014).

The recommended statutebook is Elizabeth Warren, Bankruptcy and Article 9 (2015). You may use a different statutebook if it has current versions of these statutes: (1) Articles 1 and 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code, (2) the Uniform Fraudulent Transfer Act, and (3) the Bankruptcy Code. The 2011-2014 versions of the recommended statutebook have the current versions of these statutes, as do several other books.

Also required is a photocopied supplement, which I will distribute.

The assignment for the first day is to read the casebook’s Table of Contents, Preface, and pages 1-5.

Business Planning Seminar (Hoy)
Read Chapters 1 and 2 and Problem 1 of "Business Planning" by Gevurtz.

Capital Punishment (Cateforis)
For our first class, please read Chapter 1, "The Great Debate Over Capital Punishment," in our textbook "Capital Punishment and the Judicial Process." See you Tuesday, January 19. 

Commercial Law: Payment Systems (Drahozal)
Read and prepare to discuss pages 1-9 of the photocopied materials.

Commercial Law: Secured Transactions (Ware)
The required casebook is Lynn M. LoPucki & Elizabeth Warren, "Secured Credit: A Systems Approach" (7th ed., 2012).

The recommended statutebook is Elizabeth Warren, "Bankruptcy and Article 9" (2015). You may use a different statutebook if it has current versions of these statutes: (1) Articles 1 and 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code, (2) the Uniform Motor Vehicle Certificate of Title and Anti-Theft Act, and (3) the Bankruptcy Code. The 2011-2014 versions of the recommended statutebook have the current versions of these statutes, as do several other books.

Also required is a photocopied supplement which I will distribute.

The assignment for the first class is to read casebook pages xxxi-xxxv, 3-4.

Contracts II/UCC Sales (Mulligan)
Register with the TWEN site for the course. Read the text of Article I of the Uniform Commercial Code.

Construction Law and Litigation (Burger)
Read chapters 1&2 from Construction Law, Allensworth, altman, Overcash and Patterson.

Contract Drafting (Sears)

Class 1 - January 19, 2016
Translating the Business Deal into Contract Concepts. These chapters provide the framework for the course. You will learn the analytic skill that deal lawyers use when drafting and the basic contract concepts from a deal lawyer’s perspective.

Reading Assignment
Chapter 1 – A Few Words.
Chapter 2 – The Building Blocks of Contracts.
Chapter 3 – Translating the Business Deal – Part 1.
Chapter 4 – Translating the Business Deal – Part 2. (Including the Appendices to Chapter 4.)
Chapter 5 – A Contract’s Parts.

Corporate Finance (Harper Ho)

Reading assignments for the first several weeks including required supplemental readings have been posted to the "Course Materials" section of the course Blackboard site, which should be accessible by Wed. Jan. 13.   The "Assignments" section of Blackboard will be reserved for assignments you will complete during the course.  The syllabus for the course has also been posted and I will distribute hard copies in class.

The primary casebook for the course is Carney, William J., CORPORATE FINANCE: PRINCIPLES AND PRACTICE (Foundation Press, 3d. ed. 2014)

The assignment for Tue. Jan. 19 is: Carney pp. 1-10 (skip Quick Check 2.1 on p. 10) and from the Blackboard E-Supplement: Excerpt from Brealey, Myers & Allen ("BMA"), pp. 2-5, 8-10, 721 (located in the folder for today's class on Bb).

NOTE: All supplemental course materials will be posted both on the course Blackboard site and in the optional (but recommended) coursepack. The coursepack should be available by this weekend at the KU Main Union (not the Burge). I'll confirm once I have more information. The cost of the coursepack includes not only copying costs, but also royalties to the copyright holders and so will be more expensive than printing the materials yourself. However, because the exam for the course will be in closed mode (word processing only), I encourage you to buy the coursepack rather than attempt to print out all supplemental readings. In either case, you will want to check Blackboard regularly in advance of class for additional materials, including web links, tools, and Powerpoint slides. Powerpoints will generally, but not always, be available in advance of class.

Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation (Brous)
​Please check your email for the first-day assignment.

Employment Discrimination (Schroeder)
For the first day of class, please read the note on p. 2 in the casebook on Proving Discrimination; Slack v. Havens, p. 2; and notes 1-6 following the case.

Employment Law (Schroeder)
For the first day of class, find the course materials on TWEN and read the first two cases, Lemmerman v. A.T. Williams Oil Co. and Donovan v. DialAmerica Marketing Co. You should also purchase the two coursepacks from the Union bookstore (one set of statutes, one set of regulations).

Energy Law & Policy (Outka)
Welcome back from winter break, everyone! For our first day of class (Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2:40-4:05 p.m., room 129), please read and bring with you to class the following:

(1) "STATE OF THE UNION: Hints and nods point to vast energy changes," E&E Publ. (Jan. 13, 2016)

(2) "Energy Cases to Watch in 2016,Law360 (Dec. 24, 2015) 

The readings offer a glimpse into some of the pressing themes, concerns, and trends that provide context for our study of energy law and characterize today’s rapidly evolving energy sector. As you read, please highlight and come prepared to share and discuss your observations, impressions, or other responses to what the selections convey about energy law in the current moment and looking to the future. Please also bring the Davies textbook to our first class.

Both readings are available through Wheat Law Library subscriptions and are easily retrieved online from Green Hall. Retrieve reading (1) from: http://www.eenews.net/energywire/stories/1060030537/search?keyword=STATE+OF+THE+UNION%3A+Hints+and+nods+point+to+vast+energy+changes. Retrieve reading (2) from LexisNexis as follows:

  1.       Sign on to LexisAdvance
  2.       From the LexisAdvance homepage, click on “View all news”
  3.       In the “Search News” box enter “Energy Cases to Watch in 2016”

Should you have any trouble, let me know via email (uoutka@ku.edu) and I will forward to you.

Estate Planning: Practice (Ramsdell)
For Friday (1/22), we will cover the Introduction, Practice Matters, and The Planning Process – Assignments 1.1 through 3.4. We may not complete our discussion of The Ralston Family, but I hope to at least start it.​

Evidence (Prater)
Read Chapter 1.

Family Law (Peck)
For the first week, please read pages 1-19, 26-44 in the casebook.

In the course supplement, please read  p. 1 (U.S. Consti. Art. I, § 10; Bill of Rts., Art. XIV; Ks. Consti. Art. 15, § 16 (b); p. 2 (23-118);  p. 14 (23-2501 & -2502); p 41 (59-504 & 59-505);  pages 16 & 17 (23-2601, -2602, -2604, -2607);  page 1 (Ks. Consti. Art. 15, § 16 (b); page 1 Ks. Consti. Art. 15, § 16 (a)); pages 68-71 (2 Sup. Ct. cases); pages 2-3 (21-5501(b) & 21-5504 (a)(1)); page 14 (23-2501; page 15 (23-2508)

Federal Courts (Sward)
For Wednesday, January 20, please read pages 241-254 in the Casebook and pages 1-7 in the materials.  Please be prepared to discuss this question:  What do these materials tell us about the proper role of the courts in our constitutional system? A syllabus is posted on Blackboard

Higher Education and the Law (Landsberg)
Casebook pages: 6-8, 78-81, 1067-73,1023-28, 1055-66, 1145-52.

Indian Gaming (Brien)
No reading assignment. The first day will be lecture.

Insurance Law (All)
Please read pages 1-14 of the Abraham text.

Introduction to Constitutional Law (McAllister)
(Tuesday, January 19, 10:20 - 11:15 a.m.)

  1. For our first class session, please review in detail The Constitution (pages xxv - xli in the front of the casebook) and pages 1 - 9 of the casebook.
  2. Be prepared to sign the seating chart.
  3. Be prepared for a fascinating and challenging subject.

Introduction to Constitutional Law  (Levy)
Go to the Blackboard site for the course to access information and materials and familiarize yourself with the site. If you do not have access to the site or did not receive an email from me, contact me right away.

Assignment for Jan. 19, 2016: Read the Course Information & Syllabus. Read Unit 1, pp. 1-6.

Assignment for Jan. 20, 2016: Read Unit 1, pp. 6-22.

Jurisdiction (Sward)
For Wednesday, January 20, please read pages 75-86 in the casebook. Please be prepared to discuss these questions: (1) What is the theory of jurisdiction that lies behind the court’s decision in Pennoyer v. Neff? Does that theory create practical difficulties for litigants and states? A syllabus is posted on Blackboard.

Land Transactions (Peck)
I am working on the Course Syllabus and will have it available some time this week.

For this week, I will lecture primarily on an overview of the real estate transaction, real estate finance, and legal descriptions.

Please read in the casebook: 67-81, scan 965-972 and Appendix A (953-960); read 97-100; 114-116; 159-162; 163-164 (bottom); and 372-377.

Please read in the Course Supplement: 1 to 20, 23 & 24

Legislation and Statutory Interpretation (Leben)
Read pp. 1-38, 69-75. Note: Pages 1-38 and the class discussion of it is mainly for background on the legislative process. It will be useful, but you don't need to try to master every detail.

Local Government Law (Robinson)
Read pages 1-84 in "Cases and Materials on State and Local Government Law," Briffault and Reynolds (7th ed. West Publishing 2009).

Media and the First Amendment (Kautsch)
Go to TWEN (The West Education Network), add this course, and see the course materials there for classes January 19 and 20.

Media Law Clinic (Kautsch)
Go to TWEN (The West Education Network), add the Clinic, and see the posting for January 20 titled “Clinic Focus.”

Native American Natural Resources (Kronk Warner)
Judith V. Royster, Michael C. Blumm and Elizabeth Ann Kronk, "Native American Natural Resources Law" (3rd ed. Carolina Academic Press 2013), pp 3-10.

Pretrial Advocacy (Valdez)
Required materials:

  • “Pretrial” by Thomas A. Mauet, published by Aspen Publishers
  • “Pretrial Advocacy Case File” (I will distribute in class)

Please read Chapter 1 and 2 of “Pretrial.”

Professional Responsibility (Valdez)
Required materials:

  • “Legal Ethics in the Practice of Law” by Zitrin, Langford and Cole (4th ed.).
  • Model Rules of Professional Conduct, to be found on the American Bar Association website.

Please read the Introduction and Chapter 1 (“Initial Reflections on Ethics, Morality, and Justice in the Adversary System”) of the casebook.  

Property (Outka)
Welcome back from winter break, everyone! For our first day of class (Tuesday, Jan. 19, 11:25-12:20 a.m.), please read thoughtfully and prepare to discuss:

(1)  Pages 1-8 of Chapter 1, The Concept of Property, in our core textbook Sprankling & Colletta, "Property: A Contemporary Approach" (3d ed. 2015).

(2) “The Moral Complexity of Private Ownership,” at pages 6-11 in Freyfogle & Karkkainen, The Institution of Private Ownership: Introductory Essays (2013) (available free for download at: http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2310181).

We’ll be using a classroom that is bigger than we need (104), so when you arrive to the first class, please choose a seat in the front half of the room. 

Real Estate Finance (Hickey)
Check your email for the first assignment. There is also an announcement posted on Blackboard.

Remedies (Hines)
For class Wednesday, January 20, please read pages 1-15 in the "Remedies" casebook by Douglas Laycock.

Representing Nonprofits (Hopkins)
For January 19, 2016: Nonprofit and Tax-Exempt Organizations Law Overview-Reading Assignment:

Review of law of tax-exempt organizations – discussion (see attached outline from the syllabus you received via email)

Securities Regulation (Lucas)
Text (Choi and Pritchard), skim pp. 1-47.

Taxation of Business Enterprises (Mazza)

  • Schwarz & Lathrope, "Fundamentals of Business Enterprise Taxation: Cases and Materials" (5th ed. 2012)
  • Current Code and Reg volume (2015-2016 ed.)
  • Assignments and additional readings (available on Blackboard under Law855 Spring 2016 syllabus)


  • Purchase the required materials from the bookstore.
  • Access the course materials on Blackboard.
  • Prepare Problems in the Introductory Review Unit.

Workers Compensation (Westerbeke)
Little, Eaton & Smith, Workers Compensation Cases and Materials (7th ed. 2014), pp. 1-6, 24-32, 61-74.

Academic Calendar

Elizabeth Kronk Warner
Associate Dean for Academic Affairs
Professor of Law

Vicki Palmer

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