This is an archived copy of the 2012-13 Catalog. To access the most recent version of the catalog, please visit


WVU Law comes from a place of strength—from the accomplished, dynamic faculty and students who define the school, from their invigorating aspirations, from the thriving city of Morgantown and the durable mountains and powerful rivers that beckon outdoor adventurers. They all contribute to our singular character.

West Virginia University College of Law provides students a unique opportunity to attend a small public law school within a nationally recognized research university. Here you can join diverse students from around the globe who come together in the beautiful mountains of West Virginia to experience public legal education with the intimacy of a fine private law school. Small class sizes and an excellent faculty-student ratio tell part of the story, but not all.

What makes the West Virginia College of Law experience different is the commitment of the faculty, staff, and students to an excellent, inclusive, exciting, and supportive educational community in which each student can pursue an individual vision of success in the legal profession.

Our faculty members are outstanding teachers, scholars, and leaders in legal education. What distinguishes our faculty from others, however, is the remarkable commitment they have in mentoring students to help them achieve individual goals. The faculty can be found supervising student articles for publication, assisting in obtaining prestigious federal judicial clerkships, or providing guidance for student-led symposia exploring cutting edge and relevant topics. In addition, whether our faculty members teach corporate securities or civil disobedience, each one exemplifies the duty of a lawyer to serve the public interest.

To fulfill its commitment to individual student success and to improving the profession by producing the leaders of the future, the West Virginia University College of Law has a rapidly developing curriculum that combines the best of traditional legal education with new courses and opportunities necessary to practice law in a global economy in the 21st Century.

About the College of Law

Misson Statement:  Preparing 21st century lawyers and leaders to serve the public, government, and business—both locally and globally—while focusing on justice, ethics, professionalism, and service in a diverse, vibrant and respectful community

Established: 1878

The West Virginia University College of Law was accredited by the AALS in 1914 and the ABA in 1923.

The West Virginia University College of Law is fully approved by the American Bar Association Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar.

Since 1952, the ABA Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar has been approved by the U.S. Department of Education as the recognized national agency for the accreditation of professional schools of law.

Further information as to the Standards and Rules of Procedure for the Approval of Law Schools by the American Bar Association may be obtained from the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar
750 North Lake Shore Drive
Chicago, IL 60611
PH: (312) 988-6738
FX: (312) 988-5681 .

Students at the WVU College of Law must assess 91 credits to graduate and must maintain a cumulative grade point average of 2.20 or better.  The first-year curriculum is a fixed set of coruses taken by all students.  Students are largely free to shape their own courses of study during the last two years of law school, subject to a small number of upper-level requirements.

First Year Curriculum

The first-year curriculum is a required set of courses designed by the faculty to give new law students an introduction to the fundamentals of legal practice. You will be assigned to a section of each required course. The first-year curriculum covers three areas: 

1.  Private Law governs the legal relationships and the resolution of disputes among private persons and entities. The Private Law courses you will take are Torts (civil wrongs), Contracts, and Property.

2.  Public Law concerns governmental regulation of private persons and entities.  The Public Law courses you will take are Criminal Law and Constitutional Law.

3.  Practice courses teach procedural law, the norms of legal ethics, and the skills of legal research, reasoning, and writing.  The Practice courses you will take are Civil Procedure (both Jurisdiction and Rules), Professional Responsibility, and two semesters of Legal Reasoning, Research, and Writing.

First Year Program
LAW 700Legal Analysis/Rsch/Writing 10
LAW 703Contracts 14
LAW 705Criminal Law3
LAW 706Civil Procedure: Jurisdiction2
LAW 709Torts 14
LAW 707Property4
LAW 711Legal Analysis/Rsch/Writing 24
LAW 722Civil Procedure: Rules3
LAW 725Constitutional Law 14
LAW 742Professional Responsibility3

Students must pass all the required first-year classes in order to graduate. Students must obtain a C or better to satisfy the Legal Reasoning, Research, and Writing (LRRW) course requirement.

Upper Level Requirements

  • Appellate Advocacy (2 credits). Students must obtain a grade of C or better to satisfy the Appellate Advocacy requirement.
  • One research seminar (2-3 credits, depending on length of class meetings and paper length) from an extensive menu of seminars. Seminars are specifically noted by the letters “Sem.” in the course title and are numbered as “Law 689 or 794.” Seminars have a common structure: small-class discussions geared toward the production of a substantial (i.e. 8,000 words (~ 25 pages) or longer) written product supported by extensive research. Typically, the research seminar aims at the production of a law-review style research paper of publishable quality. Seminars may aim at other written products, such as draft legislation or jury instructions, so long as these products are accompanied by papers urging their adoption by the appropriate lawmakers. Enrollment is limited to 15 students in each seminar.  Students must obtain a grade of “C” or better to satisfy the seminar requirement. Independent studies and externships do not satisfy the seminar requirement.
  • One Perspective Course.  The perspective requirement reflects the College of Law’s conviction that legal education should expand students’ horizons by connecting their studies to the traditions of the liberal arts (i.e. the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences). Perspective courses examine law and lawyers primarily from points of view that are significantly different from the doctrinal and policy analysis taught in standard upper-level courses on various areas of practice. Rather than taking the judicial opinions, statutes, and regulations of American law as their primary texts, they immerse students in ways of thinking about the law and about lawyering that differ from the approaches most commonly used by working lawyers and judges. Perspective courses look across doctrinal boundaries, engaging the student in a conversation about the relationships between law and other disciplines; they explore the nature of the American legal system by contrasting it with other legal systems; they discuss the ways in which law and lawyers both shape and are shaped by the liberal arts and the wider culture. Some examples of perspective courses  include: American Legal History, Jurisprudence, Law and Psychology, Gender & Law, Lawyers & Literature, Comparative Constitutional Law, and Empirical Legal Methods.  Perspective courses are designated by an asterisk on the class schedule and are collected in an official list of perspective courses. Both the latest version of the class schedule and the official perspective list can be found on the College of Law website:

  • One Capstone Course. Students must take one course from the following list of “capstone” courses. These include:

  1. Trial Advocacy (4 credits);
  2. A Clinic. Current clinical opportunities include: The Clinical Law Program (14 credits over two semesters with practice groups in General Civil Practice, Immigration Law, Child and Family Advocacy, Tax, and an Innocence Project), Entrepreneurship Clinic (9 credits over two semesters), U.S. Supreme Court Clinic (8 credits over 2 semesters), and Land Use/Sustainability Clinic (4 credits per semester);
  3. Federal Judicial Externship program (13 credits over one semester; 6 graded, 7 pass/fail);
  4. Public Service Externship with Federal Government Agency (13 credits over one semester; 6 graded, 7 pass/fail). Only full-semester externships with federal agencies qualify as capstone courses;
  5. Business Transactions Drafting Practicum (4 credits);
  6. When available: writing a faculty-supervised brief and making an oral argument before the U.S. Court of Appeals or the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia as an independent study project (2 credits); and
  7. By petition only: an interdisciplinary project supervised by a law faculty member and a university faculty member who is not a law faculty member.

The course in Evidence is a prerequisite to taking Trial Advocacy, the General Legal Clinic, the Child and Family Advocacy Clinic, or a Federal Judicial Externship. (There is no requirement that the student attain a particular grade in Evidence prior to taking the other courses.)

Students taking Trial Advocacy must obtain a grade of “C” or better in the course in order for that course to satisfy the capstone requirement.


LAW 600. Adv Criminal Law:Case Studies. 3 Hours.

PR: LAW 705. The examination of pre-trial, trial and post trial issues in an actual criminal case, identifying legal errors in all aspects; jury instruction, testimony, evidence to support the conviction and decision.

LAW 601. Lawyers/Poets/Poetry. 3 Hours.

The exploration of American historical and contemporary lawyers as poets and the relationship of legal language and poetry, with a theme of reflection and introspection.

LAW 602. Lawyers and Film. 3 Hours.

Through the viewing of films and open discussion, this course is designed to initiate reflection and introspection, while analyzing the struggles that arise in the pursuit if justice.

LAW 603. Brazilian Study Abroad. 3 Hours.

A study abroad course in Brazil that provides students with an immersed learning experience in Brazilian law, culture, and politics. Aspects of Brazilian law are examined and compared to American law and practice.

LAW 604. Natural Resources. 3 Hours.

A survey course that includes law, theory, and practical management challenges of natural resource policy, with a strong substantive foundation in a broad range of resources, including water, timber, minerals, and wildlife.

LAW 605. Post-Conviction Remedies. 3 Hours.

The examination of post-trial issues in an actual criminal case, identifying legal errors in all aspects; jury instructions, testimony, evidence to support the conviction, and decision.

LAW 606. Medical Malpractice. 2 Hours.

The exploration of the conflict between health care availability and the rights of medical malpractice victims with components of cases, as well as tort reform and related health care reform in general.

LAW 608. Art Law. 3 Hours.

A thorough examination of various legal topics and issues through the prism of art. Topic include intellectual property concepts of copyright, fair use and parody, First Amendment issues, non-profit organizations, sales warranties, authenticity, and salvage.

LAW 609. Child Protection and the Law. 3 Hours.

A primary focus on child abuse and neglect civil protection proceedings as defined by West Virginia Code, Chapert 49; and an examination of both federal law and West Virginia's statues, rules, and case law.

LAW 610. Comparative Law in Mexico. 1-3 Hours.

A 2-component, study abroad course with initial classroom preparation and subsequent travel to Mexico. An immersice learning experience in Mexican law, culture, and politics. Topics include: corporate governance, immigration and migration, and international human rights.

LAW 612. Agriculture/Rural Land Use. 2-3 Hours.

A consideration of the impact of various aspects of law and policy (e.g., land use regulation, environmental law, property rights, subsidies) on agricultural and other rural lands and the resulting effect on the food system.

LAW 613. International Environmentl Law. 2-3 Hours.

An issue- based approach to IEL, identifying pressing problems such as global climate change, ozone depletion, biodiversity, and studying some of the instruments and tools that have been created to deal with them.

LAW 614. Jewish/Islamic Comarative Law. 3 Hours.

A comparative law course that explores the foundations, structure, and general substance of both Jewish and Islamic legal systems with comparison to the American legal system.

LAW 620. The Legislative Process. 3 Hours.

Exploration of the legislative process in America and its impact on judicial interpretation of statutory law. Numerous topics related to the role of legislators at all levels of the government's federalist system are surveyed.

LAW 625. Nonprofit Organizations. 3 Hours.

An examination of the law as related to nonprofit organizations. Various organizational structures and the creation, organization, and dissolution of nonprofit organizations will be considered, as well as tax laws relating to nonprofit organizations.

LAW 628. Land Use/Sustnbl Dvlpmnt Clnc. 4 Hours.

A course offered to selected second- and third-year law students, with faculty supervision, will undertake projects and/or provide transactional pro bono representation to clients regarding land and water protection.

LAW 629. Adv Family Law Advocacy. 2 Hours.

A focus on laws and issues of a domestic relations practice by using West Virginia domestic law as a framework, with emphasis on practical application.

LAW 630. Energy Law. 3 Hours.

An examination of law and regulatory policies that govern and impact the energy industry, including all energy sources and alternative fuel possibilities.

LAW 631. Cyberlaw. 3 Hours.

Cyberlaw explores the application of law to all aspects of internet activity and function. Topics such as privacy, consumer protection, trademarks, copyrights, on-line contracting and jurisdiction will be covered.

LAW 632. Advanced Labor Law. 3 Hours.

LAW 741 recommended. Advanced topics in labor-management relations under the general jurisdiction of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and the courts.

LAW 633. Internatnl Business Transactn. 3 Hours.

LAW 729 recommended. A foundation for the pursuit of a career as a corporate attorney with an international focus.

LAW 650. Entrepreneurship Clinic 1. 4 Hours.

In a clinical setting, apply Intellectual Property and Business Law concepts to assist actual clients in entrepreneur endeavors; covering the basic of business organizations, IP protection, financing, and contracting and the affect on entrepreneurs.

LAW 651. Entrepreneurship Clinic 2. 5 Hours.

PR: LAW 650. A continuation of Entrepreneur Clinic 1 to assist actual clients in entrepreneur endeavors, covering the basic of business organizations, IP protection, financing, and contracting and the affect on entrepreneurs.

LAW 652. Jessup Internatnal Moot Court. 2 Hours.

PR: LAW 768. A required course for students selected for the Jessup International Moot Court Competiton Team that provides oral advocacy instruction and training for the current year's Jessup competition.

LAW 653. Law & Public Service. 1,2 Hour.

PR or CONC: LAW 654. A practical course in which selected student will serve as externs to public service and government agencies. Classroom instruction and reflective writing requirements are included.

LAW 654. Public Service Externship. 2-6 Hours.

PR or CONC: LAW 653. The fieldwork component of LAW 653.

LAW 655. Law & Public Service FT. 2-6 Hours.

PR or CONC: LAW 656. A practical course in which selected students will serve as externs to public service and government agencies on a full-time basis. Classroom instruction and reflective writing requirements are included.

LAW 656. Law/Public Service Extrnshp FT. 6-11 Hours.

PR or CONC: LAW 655. The field work component of LAW 655.

LAW 682. Practical Legal Writing 1. 1 Hour.

A bar review course focusing primarily on the Multistate Essay Exam (MEE) and Multistate Performance Test (MPT); includes strategies for taking the Multistate Bar Exam (MBE) and Multistate Professional Responsibilty Exam (MPRE).

LAW 683. Practical Legal Writing 2. 1 Hour.

PR or CONC: LAW 682. Open by invitation only, a one-hour extension of Practical Legal Writing 1 for students who would benefit from additional review and who must register for Practical Legal Writing 1 concurrently.

LAW 685. Child & Family Law Clinic 1. 7 Hours.

PR: LAW 727. A course in which students represent clienct in child and family matters under faculty supervision. Includes a classroom component. Average 20 hours per week client work is expected.

LAW 686. Child & Family Law Clinic 2. 7 Hours.

PR: LAW 685. A continuation of LAW 685, Child and Family Law Clinic 1. Includes a classroom component. Average of 20 hours per week client work is expected.

LAW 689A. Sem:Intellectual Property. 2 Hours.

Considers the economic and social role of intellectual property laws in American and world economics. Preparation of a research paper of publishable quality will be required.

LAW 689B. Sem: Judicial Power/Restraint. 2 Hours.

This course critically explores the court's role in our constitutional democracy, including issues of federalism, separation of powers, recusal, interpretation, judicial philosophies, authority, judicial selection, abstention, remedial power, and judicial ethics.

LAW 689C. Sem:Adv Criminal Procedure. 2 Hours.

Explores criminal procedure, including bail application, motion, search and seizure, hearings, discovery of evidence, trial structure, appeal, and habeas corpus proceedings.

LAW 689D. Sem:Environmental Law. 2 Hours.

This seminar provides a practical setting for environmental law in a litigation context that uses a case study method.

LAW 689E. Sem: Land Transactions. 2 Hours.

This seminar provides the knowledge and practice of title examinations and the documents involved in conveyancing. Students also submit a research paper on an issue involving real estate.

LAW 689F. Sem:Lawyers & Legislation. 2 Hours.

Explores the role of lawyers in the legislative process with practical exercise in bill drafting and presentation to legislators.

LAW 689G. Sem:Religion & Constitution. 2 Hours.

Explores the major doctrinal issues in the interpretation of the First Amendment's religion clauses. Related statutory schemes affecting religious liberty such as RFRA and RLUIPA will also be discussed.

LAW 689H. Sem:Bioethics and the Law. 2 Hours.

An examination of the theological, philosophical and scientific foundations of bioethics; the operation of bioethical principles in the context of current bioethical controversies; and the relations between bioethics and the law.

LAW 689I. Sem:Environmental Justice. 2 Hours.

A broad view of environmental justice issues and their impact on minorities and dis-empowered citizens and communities.

LAW 689J. Sem:Civil Rights Litigation. 2 Hours.

Explores the history of the American Civil Rights Movement, the legal development of civil rights in the United States, and the development of legal precedents with emphasis on West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals cases.

LAW 689K. Sem: Civil Disobedience. 2 Hours.

An examination of the justification and operation of civil disobedience.

LAW 689L. Sem:Health Care Regulations. 2 Hours.

Medical innovation development from concept to clinical application. Primarily designed for law students or business majors, but also extended to medical students. Includes guest lecturers in intellectual property and credentialing areas.

LAW 689M. Sem:Race/Racism/American Law. 2 Hours.

This seminar focuses on historical and current event issues regarding race, racism and American law. It offers students the opportunity to advance in research and writing on the subject.

LAW 689N. Sem:Refugee & Asylum Law. 2 Hours.

A research and writing seminar examining U.S. and international refugee and asylum law through reading, discussion and individual research.

LAW 689O. Sem:Family Mediation. 2 Hours.

A comprehensive exploration of the usage of mediation for the resolution of disputes in the area of family law.

LAW 689P. Sem:Gender and Law. 2 Hours.

The examination of the multiplicities of identiry regarding the categories of gender, sex, sexual orientation, race and class as used to confer benefits and determine constitutional rights.

LAW 689Q. Sem Constitutional Litigation. 2 Hours.

This course explores the development of U.S. constitutional law from a litigaton and advocacy perspective, focusing on theoretical doctrinal, and policy arguments that have been employed to expand constitutional rights.

LAW 689R. Sem: Adv Contracts/Comm Law. 2 Hours.

The examination of various topics relating to commercial, business, or construction (contracting, architecture, engineering) law. A substantial research paper is required.

LAW 689S. Sem:Law/Socioeconomics. 2 Hours.

Advanced topics in the interrelationship between law and economic/social processes.

LAW 689T. Sem:Comprt/Intrntnl Wrkplc Law. 2 Hours.

Comparative analysis of workplace laws across global jurisdictions.

LAW 689U. Sem: Animal Law. 2 Hours.

An interdisiplinary study of the dynamics of the relationships between humans and animals in American, comparative and international law. This is a writing-intensive seminar with an oral presentation and a substantial research paper.

LAW 689V. Sem:Juvenile Justice. 2 Hours.

An examination of the legal, social, and historical underpinnings of the juvenile justice system in the U.S., in both theory and practice, with attention to court decisions as affecting juvenile court.

LAW 689W. Sem:Issues in Energy Law. 2 Hours.

This seminar provides an understanding of a variety of issues regarding energy law and policy, both past and present, in the United States. A research paper on an energy law issue is required.

LAW 689X. Sem:National Security Law. 2 Hours.

The history and framework of U.S. national security law and policies, with a focus on national security in the context of the use of military force, the intelligence community, civil liberties, and counterterrorism efforts.

LAW 700. Legal Analysis/Rsch/Writing 1. 0 Hours.

Introduction to legal analysis, research, and writing. Stresses basic law school skills including case briefing, statutory analysis, and synthesis. Drafting of various legal documents including an office memorandum.

LAW 701. International Human Rights. 3 Hours.

An examination of historical, philosophical and legal issues in defining, understanding, and enforcing fundamental rights in a world of conflict and diversity.

LAW 702. Forensic Mental Health. 2 Hours.

This course will address the interface between the law and mental health issues. Topics covered will include the insanity defense, competencies, emotional injury, expert witness, and civil commitment.

LAW 703. Contracts 1. 4 Hours.

The study of operation of contracts in society, what it means to have a contract, how contracts are made, and the manner and extent to which contracts and non-contract promises will be enforced.

LAW 705. Criminal Law. 3 Hours.

Substantive law of crimes including: (1) the philosophical basis for penal systems, (2) the characteristics of particular crimes, and (3) conditions of exculpation.

LAW 706. Civil Procedure: Jurisdiction. 2 Hours.

This required, first-year course covers key civil procedure concepts including personal jurisdiction, notice and opportunity to be heard, subject matter jurisdiction, diversity jurisdiction, removal, venue, and the Erie doctrine.

LAW 707. Property. 4 Hours.

Law of real property in historical and theoretical context. Includes estates in land and future interest, concurrent ownership, methods of obtaining title, modern land transactions, recording, title examination, and the law of servitudes.

LAW 709. Torts 1. 4 Hours.

The basic civil common law response to injury. The fault-based liability system for intentional torts, privileges, and negligence. Consideration of fact and proximate cause, joint tortfeasors, and limited duty.

LAW 710. Torts 2. 3 Hours.

PR: LAW 709. A continuation of Torts 1. The tort law of land occupiers, damages, defenses, imputed negligence, strict liability, products liability, and modern statutory substitutes for tort law.

LAW 711. Legal Analysis/Rsch/Writing 2. 4 Hours.

PR: LAW 700. Continuation of LAW 700. Stresses research and writing. Drafting of various legal documents culminating in the preparation of a trial motion and memorandum and oral argument of the motion. (Credit for LAW 700, LAW 711.).

LAW 712. Analytical Methods for Lawyers. 3 Hours.

An introduction and overview of game theory, probability statistics, finance, accounting and economics, as they relate to the practice of law. Beneficial to students without undergraduate degrees in business or economics.

LAW 713. Toxic Torts. 3 Hours.

PR:LAW 709. An in-depth study of the law of toxic torts in the context of environmental harms.

LAW 714. Remedies. 3 Hours.

Equity, damages, and restitution. Survey of remedies available for harms.

LAW 715. Appellate Advocacy. 2 Hours.

PR: LAW 700 and LAW 711. Survey of appellate practice. Drafting of an appellate brief and an argumentation of the brief.

LAW 716. Wealth Transfers. 3 Hours.

An analysis of the laws estate administration, trusts, and future interests. governing intestate succession, wills, trusts, and other testamentary substitutes focusing on West Virginia law. Rules of construction governing iner vivas and testamentary dispositions shall also be investigated.

LAW 717. Domestic Violence & The Law. 3 Hours.

(LAW 769 is recommended.) The examination of civil and criminal statues and case law, as applied to domestic violence, focusing on national trends and West Virginia state law.

LAW 718. Adv Bankruptcy. 3 Hours.

PR: LAW 767. The exploration of bankruptcy code complexities with emphasis on Chapter 11 reorganization.

LAW 719. Income Taxation 1. 3 Hours.

Gross income, deductions, exclusions, and gains and losses from dealing in property.

LAW 720. Entertainment Law. 3 Hours.

A foundation for the pursuit of a transactional or corporate law career in the entertainment industry. Includes the law contracts, copyright, trademark, and agent representation issues.

LAW 721. Sports Law. 3 Hours.

A foundation for the pursuit of a transactional or corporate law career in sports law. Includes the practical application of law of contracts and the process of negotiation.

LAW 722. Civil Procedure: Rules. 3 Hours.

This required, first -year course examines most provisions of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, including coverage of pleading, pre-trial motions, joinder, discovery, summary judgement, jury trial rights, and post-trial motions.

LAW 723. Immigration Law. 2,3 Hours.

Constitutional underpinnings for immigration power; categories of and requirements for employment-based, family-based, and diversity-based immigration; visas for temporary visitation; problems with illegal immigration; removal procedures; and special policy issues, such as terrorism.

LAW 724. Immigration Clinic. 4-6 Hours.

PR: LAW 723. Students work in teams representing real clients with immigration law problems. Instructors supervise the students' work.

LAW 725. Constitutional Law 1. 3,4 Hours.

Basic study of the principles of constitutional decision making. Areas of emphasis include the allocation of power within the federal system, procedural and substantive due process, and equal protection of the law.

LAW 726. Constitutional Law 2. 3 Hours.

PR: LAW 725. First Amendment freedoms of speech, press, assembly, association, and petition.

LAW 727. Evidence. 3 Hours.

Rules, principles, and practice of the law of evidence covering judicial notice; real, demonstrative, testimonial and circumstantial evidence; hearsay; and other exclusionary rules, privileges, confidential relationships, witnesses, and other related subjects.

LAW 728. West Virginia Constitutnl Law. 2 Hours.

A study of the West Virginia Constitution, its history, and its judicial interpretation with special emphasis on the branches of state government.

LAW 729. Business Organizations. 4 Hours.

Basic introduction to business organizations, their formation, maintenance, and dissolution. Includes agency, partnership, and corporations.

LAW 732. Construction Law. 3 Hours.

The course explores specialized legal issues in the law governing building construction including legal relationships among the primary participants in such projects and an examination of current decisional and statutory law affecting those relationships.

LAW 733. Education Law. 3 Hours.

A survey of major topics in education law with a focus on public primary and secondary education. The course includes consideration of both constitutional and statutory law affecting schools.

LAW 734. Intellectual Property. 3 Hours.

Legal problems in the protection of ideas including copyright, trademark, patent, and law of unfair competition; and their interrelationship.

LAW 735. Patent Law. 3,4 Hours.

The application and interpretation of patent law, including the requirements for obtaining a patent, infringement action, and other patent related law and policy.

LAW 736. Legal Estate Planning. 3 Hours.

PR: LAW 716. The law in its relation to problems of intergenerational transfers, including federal transfer taxes (estate and gift tax), life insurance, revocable and irrevocable trusts, wills, and the probate process.

LAW 737. Land Use Planning. 3 Hours.

PR: LAW 707. An in-depth study of the law of land use planning and zoning, generally and specifically in West Virginia, examining constitutional and statutory basis of land-use controls.

LAW 738. Business Torts. 3 Hours.

The study of trademark, trade secrets, and unfair competition law, with a strong emphasis on the development of these doctrines in American law from both a statutory and common law perspective.

LAW 739. American Legal History. 3 Hours.

The study of American law from the colonial period to the present with emphasis on the jurisprudential, social, economic, political and cultural influences that have shaped the development of a distinctively American legal system.

LAW 740. Conflict of Laws. 3 Hours.

Legal problems arising when an occurrence cuts across state or national boundaries, emphasizing questions of characterization, jurisdiction, foreign judgments, recognition and application of foreign law in selected fields of law.

LAW 741. Employment Law. 3-4 Hours.

The course primarily focuses on federal and state regulations of the employee- employer relationships and may include; wrongful discharge, employee discrimination, wage/hour issues, and occupational safety and health.

LAW 742. Professional Responsibility. 3 Hours.

Professional responsibility in the administration of justice in society; Code of Professional Responsibility examined in light of traditional and changing demands of the legal system.

LAW 743. Patent Prosecution. 3 Hours.

PR: LAW 735. The study of all stages of patent prosecution, with an emohasis on claims drafting and amendment of claims. Prosecution study emphasizes drafting responses to official actions.

LAW 744. Law & Economics. 3 Hours.

Legal rules and institutions from perspective of economics; basic assumptions and principles with application to private law (contract, tort, nuisance, litigation) and public law (regulations, taxation, redistribution.).

LAW 746. Lawyers and Literature. 3 Hours.

A course of literary readings (emphasizing fiction and novels) that involve lawyers and focus on the theme of reflection and introspection.

LAW 747. Health Care Law. 3 Hours.

This introductory course in health care law, includes state and federal regulation of the business of health care, "system" managed care, fraud and abuse, and health care transactions.

LAW 748. Presidential Powers. 2 Hours.

This course explores the role of the executive vis-a-vis Congress and the Judiciary through a study of the historical, textual, and functional bases of executive power, as well as the limitations on it.

LAW 750. Alternative Dispute Resolution. 3 Hours.

A theoretical and practical examination of negotiation, court-annexed and private mediation and arbitration, summary jury and minitrials, and other "alternative dispute resolution processes; an assessment of the appropriateness of ADR for particular legal disputes.

LAW 752. Jurisprudence. 3 Hours.

Introduction to legal philosophy. Major jurisprudential issues; definition of law, concept of justice, relation of law and morality considered in light of specific legal theories and contemporary issues.

LAW 753. Estate and Gift Taxation. 3 Hours.

Application of federal transfer taxes (estate and gift tax) and West Virginia inheritance tax; inter vivos transfers; joint interests; life insurance; valuation; exemptions, exclusions and deductions; marital deduction.

LAW 754. State & Local Taxation. 3 Hours.

Constitutional limitations; examination of specific taxes such as ad valorem, sales and use, business and occupation, and income taxes; tax exemptions; and tax procedure.

LAW 755. Partnership Tax. 2 Hours.

PR: LAW 719. The study of Partnership Tax with an emphasis on reading the appropriate sections of the Internal Revenue Code and applying them to various problems to instill in the students the fundamentals of partnership tax.

LAW 756. Trial Advocacy. 4 Hours.

PR: LAW 727. Introduction to techniques of, and moral and ethical questions associated with trial practice, jury selection, opening statement, direct and cross examination, closing argument. Lecture, discussion, and simulation.

LAW 757. Law Review Seminar 1. 2 Hours.

Legal research, writing, and editing involved in the production for publication of analytical and scholarly commentary on the law. Enrollment is limited to third-year students who are members of the West Virginia Law Review.

LAW 758. Law Review Seminar 2. 2 Hours.

PR: LAW 757. Continuation of LAW 757.

LAW 759. Civil Rights. 3 Hours.

Survey of federal civil rights and statutes; causes of action to vindicate constitutional rights and remedy discrimination; primary emphases on substance, procedures, and defenses under 42 U.S.C. 1983.

LAW 760. Workers Compensation Law. 3 Hours.

A study of the compensation system for work related injuries.

LAW 761. Criminal Procedure. 4 Hours.

Investigatory stages of criminal process including search and seizure, interrogation and identification, processing defendant through criminal process; arrest through trial including preliminary hearings, grand jury, discovery, plea negotiation, and double jeopardy.

LAW 762. Federal Courts. 3 Hours.

Jurisdiction and procedure in federal courts. Federal question and diversity jurisdiction; removal jurisdiction and procedure; the law applied in federal courts, and procedural rules unique to the federal system.

LAW 763. Employment Discrimination. 3 Hours.

Survey of federal and state statutes prohibiting discrimination in employment practices on grounds of race, gender, national origin, religion, age, or disability.

LAW 764. Administrative Law. 3 Hours.

Creation and operation of administrative agencies, common procedural practices and requirements of administrative procedure acts, judicial control of administrative agencies.

LAW 766. Coal/Oil and Gas. 3 Hours.

Nature of ownership of subsurface minerals; methods of transferring ownership thereof, partition among co-owners, analysis of leasehold estates, and rights and duties thereunder, coal mining rights and privileges.

LAW 767. Bankrptcy:Creditr/Debtr Rights. 3 Hours.

Federal bankruptcy law including consumer and business liquidation in Chapter 7 and rehabilitation in Chapter 11 and Chapter 13. Actual preparation of filings and plans. Introductory coverage of state debtors in collecting debts and enforcing judgments.

LAW 768. International Law. 3 Hours.

The law governing the behavior of nations; overview of customary law, treaties, dispute resolution, armed conflict, and recent specific problems for the United States in the world community.

LAW 769. Family Law. 3 Hours.

The law in its relation to creation, stability, and breakdown of domestic relations including engagement, marriage, annulment, separation, divorce, alimony and child support, custody, and adoption (Based on national and West Virginia law.).

LAW 770. Insurance. 2 Hours.

A survey of the basic principles, rules, and issues from the formation of the insurance relationship including indemnity, protections afforded, claims, and payment.

LAW 771. Labor Law. 3 Hours.

Labor-management relations under the general jurisdiction of the National Labor Relations Board and the courts. Collective bargaining, administration, and enforcement of labor agreements and enforcement and protection of rights of employees, unions, and the public.

LAW 773. Payment Systems. 2 Hours.

The law dealing with bills, notes and checks. The relationship of banks with depositors and other banks; commercial credit operations; creation and protection of claims, and UCC Articles 3, 4 and 4a.

LAW 774. Local Government. 2 Hours.

Distribution of governmental authority among local, state, and national governments; public office and employment, liability risks of local governmental action; taxing and budgeting.

LAW 775. Pre-trial Litigation. 3 Hours.

This course will immerse students in the daily work of civil litigatiors. Students will learn the procedural and substantive contours of litigating a hypothetical case from its inception through the eve of trial.

LAW 776. Sales & Secured Transactions. 4 Hours.

Functional approach designed to use the UCC for commercial and consumer problems. Focus on sale of goods, security interest in personal property, and Articles 1, 2, 6, and 9 of the UCC.

LAW 777. Health Care Torts. 3 Hours.

Introduction to legal issues that arise in the U.S. health care system relating mainly to patient care; emphasizing topics such as medical malpractice, informed consent, patient confidentiality, quality and accessibility of health care to patients.

LAW 778. Trade Regulation. 3 Hours.

Federal and state controls of vertical and horizontal integration and the legal limits upon the concentration of economic power in the United States.

LAW 779. Business Transactions Drafting. 4 Hours.

Focuses on the process and principles of drafting documents used in connection with various types of business arrangements. Such documents establish norms, or rules of expected behavior between the parties in the business context.

LAW 780. Federal Judicial Externship 1. 2-8 Hours.

PR: LAW 727 and PR or CONC: LAW 780A. Strongly recommended that students take LAW 761 and LAW 762 prior to enrolling in this course. A two-component, practical course in which selected students will serve as regular, full-time clerks to federal district court and appellate judges for one semester. Classroom instruction and writing requirements are included.

LAW 780A. Federal Judicial Externship 2. 6-11 Hours.

PR: LAW 727 and PRor CONC: LAW 780. Strongly recommended that students take LAW 761 and LAW 762 prior to enrolling in this course. The field work component of LAW 780.

LAW 781. Postmodern Juridprudnece. 3 Hours.

This course explores contemporary legal philosophy. It examines reactions of postmodern schools - law and literature, law and economics, critical race, gender law, "queercrit", pragmatism, therapeutic jurisprudence - to classical jurisprudence including natural law, positivism and realism.

LAW 782. Legal Clinic 1. 7 Hours.

PR: LAW 706, LAW 722, and LAW 727. A clinical introduction to the arts and skills of lawyering. Students may represent clients and also engage in simulated practice exercises.

LAW 783. Legal Clinic 2. 7 Hours.

PR: LAW 782. A continuation of LAW 782. Students are given increased responsibilities for cases and will try a case in a simulated and/or actual trial setting.

LAW 784. Securities. 3 Hours.

Federal and state regulations of the distribution of and trading in securities, including the Blue-Sky Laws and federal acts.

LAW 785. Federal Corporate Taxation. 4 Hours.

PR: LAW 719. Application of federal income taxation to corporations and shareholders; distributions and redemptions; complete liquidations; corporate acquisitions and divisions; and Subchapter S.

LAW 786. Lugar Trial Advocacy. 2-3 Hours.

An extensive lecture series and trial simulation program designed to provide opportunities for students to develop advanced litigation skills. Students must participate in six full-scale mock trials and one outside trial competition.

LAW 787. Intercollegiate Moot Court. 2-4 Hours.

Appellate brief writing and argumentation for members of intercollegiate moot court teams.

LAW 788. Legal Interviewing/Counseling. 3 Hours.

The course studies each of the lawyer's basic interpersonal skills and develops a client-centered approach to law practice. Readings and class discussion on interpersonal professional relations supplement extensive skills training in simulated cases.

LAW 789. Law-Environmental Protection. 3 Hours.

Problems of identifying and evaluating scientific evidence of air and water pollution; weighting the benefits of economic and technological progress against resulting harm to the quality of life; choice among alternative forms of litigation and public regulation as methods of social control.

LAW 791A-Z. Advanced Topics. 1-6 Hours.

PR: Consent. Investigation of advanced topics not covered in regularly scheduled courses.

LAW 792A-Z. Directed Study. 1-6 Hours.

Directed study, reading, and/or research.

LAW 793A. SPTP:Land Use Clinic. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793B. SPTP:Writing About Law. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793C. SPTP:Law and Psychology. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793D. SPTP:Lawyers as Leaders. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793E. SPTP:Cultural Property. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793F. SPTP:Counseling/Interviewing. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793G. SPTP:Mexican Constitutn & Gov. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793H. SPTP:Writing for Practice. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793I. SPTP:Energy Reg & Environ. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793J. Special Topics. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793K. SPTP:Real Estate Finance. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793L. SPTP:Crprt Gvrnc-Comprtv Prspt. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793M. SPTP:Agriculture & Rural Lands. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793N. SPTP:Patent Prosecution/Draftg. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793O. Special Topics. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793P. SPTP:How Not to Write Like Law. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793Q. Special Topics. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793R. SPTP:Prosecutorial Misconduct. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793S. SPTP:Land Use/Sustainability. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793T. Special Topics. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793U. SPTP:International Military. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793V. SPTP:Lawyer as Storyteller. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793W. Special Topics. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793X. SPTP:Mine Safety Law. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793Y. SPTP:Jewish-Islamic Comp. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 793Z. SPTP:Into Entrepreneurship Law. 1-6 Hours.

A study of contemporary topics selected from recent developments in the field.

LAW 794A-Z. Seminar. 1-6 Hours.

Research seminar in various topics. Substantial writing is required under close supervision of the faculty member. (Enrollment limited).

LAW 795. Independent Study. 1-6 Hours.

Faculty supervised study of topics not available through regular course offerings.

LAW 797. Research. 1-15 Hours.

PR: Consent. Research activities leading to thesis, problem report, research paper or equivalent scholarly project, or a dissertation. (Grading may be S/U.).


President Emeritus

  • David C. Hardesty, Jr.
    WVU President Emeritus & Professor of Law


  • Joyce E. McConnell
    William J. Maier, Jr. Dean & Thomas R. Goodwin Professor of Law

Dean Emeritus

  • John W. Fisher II
    William J. Maier, Jr. Dean Emeritus & Professor of Law

Associate Deans

  • Gregory Elkins
    Associate Dean for Administration & Finance
  • Anne M. Lofaso
    Associate Dean for Faculty Research & Development and Professor of Law
  • John E. Taylor
    Associate Dean for Academic Affairs & Professor of Law

Assistant Deans

  • Janet Long Armistead
    Admissions and Student Affairs
  • Bill Coates
  • Jessica A. Justice
    Continuing Legal Education
  • Jennifer Powell
    Career Services


  • Gerald G. Ashdown
    James H. "Buck" & June M. Harless Professor of Law
  • Robert M. Bastress
    John W. Fisher, II Professor of Law
  • Thomas C. Cady
    Professor of Law
  • Vincent P. Cardi
    Bowles, Rice, McDavid, Graff, & Love Professor of Law
  • Franklin D. Cleckley
    Authur B. Hodges Professor of Law
  • Charles R. DiSalvo
    Woodrow A. Potesta Professor of Law
  • James R. Elkins
    Professor of Law
  • James J. Friedberg
    Hale J. & Roscoe P. Posten Professor of Law
  • Majorie A. McDiarmid
    Steptoe & Johnson Professor of Law & Technology
  • Patrick C. McGinley
    Charles H. Haden II Professor of Law
  • James A. McLaughlin
    Robert L. Shuman Professor of Law
  • Dale P. Olson
    Professor of Law
  • Grace J. Wigal
    Teaching Professor & Director of Academic Excellence Program

Associate professors

  • Jena Martin Amerson
    Associate Professor of Law
  • Valena Beety
    Associate Professor of Law
  • Gregory W. Bowman
    Associate Professor of Law
  • Atiba R. Ellis
    Associate Professor of Law
  • Kendra Fershee
    Associate Professor of Law
  • Joshua Fershee
    Associate Professor of Law
  • David L. Krech
    Teaching Associate Professor & Director of Appellate Advocacy
  • James Van Nostrand
    Associate Professor of Law & Director, Center for Energy and Sustainable Development
  • Thomas O. Patrick
    Teaching Associate Professor
  • Alison Peck
    Associate Professor of Law
  • William Rhee
    Associate Professor of Law
  • Camille M. Riley
    Associate Professor of Law
  • Hollee S. Temple
    Teaching Associate Professor & Director of Legal Research and Writing
  • Shine (Sean) Tu
    Associate Professor of Law
  • Elaine W. Wilson
    Associate Professor of Law

Visiting Faculty

  • Kelly Behre
    Visiting Associate Professor
  • Michael Blumenthal
    Visiting Professor & Co-Director, Immigration Law Clinical Practice Group
  • Thomas Clancy
    Judge John T. Copenhaver, Jr. Chair of Law
  • Patricia H. Lee
    Visiting Associate Professor & Director, Entrepreneurship Law Clinic
  • Barton Z. Cowan
    Visiting Professor
  • Jessica A. Haught
    Visiting Teaching Associate Professor
  • Matthew Titolo
    Visiting Associate Professor
  • Suzanne M. Weise
    Visiting Associate Professor & Director, Child & Family Law Clinical Practice Group
  • Joshua Weishart
    Visiting Associate Professor

Professors emeriti

  • Forest J. Bowman
    Jackson & Kelly Professor of Law Emeritus
  • Robert Lathrop
    Professor of Law Emeritus