Arbitration Advocacy

Course Number: 505G

Description: Students will be exposed to the following topics: mandatory versus voluntary arbitration, including persuading opposing counsel to participate, preliminary pre-arbitration considerations (stages of the arbitration process: initiation, preparation, pre-hearing, hearing, decision-making, and award), selecting cases for arbitration, attorney ethics, considering site inspection and audiovisual aids, selecting expert witness, arbitrator ethics, pre-hearing advocacy (preparing the arbitration demand, drafting motions and responses, drafting position statements), the preliminary hearing (arbitrability issues, joinder of parties, witness lists, hearing exhibits, order of evidence, sequestration of witnesses, burdens of proof, subpoenas, nature and form of award), preparing for the arbitration hearing (designing a persuasive "trial story," preparing the client, and preparing witnesses/exhibits), advocacy during the arbitration hearing (procedural rules, opening statements, presentation of facts, comments on opposition's case, summary and request for relief, evidentiary rules, direct examination, cross-examination, impeachment, expert testimony, evidentiary foundations, and persuasive use of exhibits), post-hearing advocacy (drafting post-hearing briefs, motions to re-open proceedings, enforcing the award, and challenging the award). The primary objectives of the course are to better understand the nature and practice of commercial arbitration; and to develop advocacy skills by providing "hands-on" training in commercial arbitration. This course is restricted to students selected for the ABA Commercial Arbitration Competition.