Here’s a bit of info on the classes I’m taking this semester:

 Conflict of Laws – 3 credit hours
Covers law controlling cases with significant aspects relating to more than one state of the United States or to more than one country; focuses primarily on jurisdiction, choice of law, and enforcement of judgments; examines statutes and common law rules and theories, underlying policies, and control exercised by the federal government through constitutional limitations.
Prerequisite(s): Civil Procedure I & II; Constitutional Law strongly recommended.

Coming into this class, I had mixed feelings about it. Hopefully, I’ll get to take jurisprudence next semester, but if I don’t, this course will meet my Policy and Perspectives requirement. I’ve also heard that the subject matter of this class gets tested on the bar exam quite frequently, so that’s a good thing. It’s still too early for me to tell how I’ll like this one, but one thing I do know is that I do NOT want to fall behind in this class.

Decedents’ Estates & Trusts – 3 credit hours
Covers law of gratuitous transfers, including intestacy; testate succession; trusts; powers of appointment; other related will substitutes; and the administration of estates and trusts.
Prerequisite(s): Property I

I am taking this class for one reason and one reason alone: the bar exam. Coming into law school, I thought I was interested in property law. After taking property, however, I was far less interested. I’ve been dreading this class, but so far the professor has made it pretty interesting. We’ll see how long my interest in this class lasts. (Feel free to hold your breath.)

Criminal Procedure Trial Process – 3 credit hours
Focuses on issues arising in the trial phase. The course begins with the initial charging instrument and ends with conviction. The course covers the principal U.S. Constitutional issues which arise, including limitations on the prosecutor, right to bail, grand jury, double jeopardy, pleas and the effective assistance of counsel.

Okay . . . I’m pretty interested in this class. I already took Criminal Procedure Pretrial, so this class should complement that fairly well. Plus, I’m pretty sure the professor is a character straight out of a Grisham novel. If he’s not, he should be. I think I’m going to like this class.

Film and Criminal Law (Law & Film) – 2 credit hours
Course consists of watching a criminal law-based film each week following an hour discussion of the film shown the preceding week. Students will be given weekly questionaires about the films and required to read and complete them. The goal of the course is to encourage students to learn about the legal profession by reflecting on the issues presented in the films.

This class is taught by the same professor who is teaching Crim Pro Trial, so that’s a point in its favor. Plus, it’s a film class. Yes, that means we watch a movie each week and talk about it. I’d probably take this class even if it was zero credits. On the downside, this class meets on Fridays at 5:30PM. Nobody likes a Friday night class, but I can live with this.

 I’ll try to keep you up-to-date with what movies we watch in this class. On Friday, we watched The Ox-Bow Incident. IMDB describes the plot of this film as

Two drifters are passing through a Western town, when news comes in that a local farmer has been murdered and his cattle stolen. The townspeople, joined by the drifters, form a posse to catch the perpetrators. They find three men in possession of the cattle, and are determined to see justice done on the spot.

 I definitely wasn’t expecting to watch a western in this class. However, after watching it, I can certainly understand why it was selected. Ultimately, the film leaves viewers with the impression that vigilante justice may not be all that just.