OverviewThe law school has developed a wide range of experiential courses for students who intend to pursue transactional law in both the private and public sector. We offer skills development that will help students enter business law practices with a broad exposure to the relevant substantive law, an understanding of what business lawyers do, and how they go about doing so ethically and competently. In experiential transactional courses, students learn drafting, planning and negotiation skills, how to finance a start-up company, sell a private company, advise a community-based organization, or manage a myriad of environmental issues that arise when selling a business.
Bankruptcy Transactional Course: Negotiating and Confirming Chapter 11 Plans
Students in this course are divided into groups and assigned one of four roles ― debtor's counsel, secured bank's counsel, unsecured creditors' committee's counsel and note holders' counsel – and over the course of the semester negotiate and/or litigate a plan of reorganization. The course provides extensive training in negotiation theory and practice as well as legal drafting, allowing students to apply the kinds of strategic decision-making and problem-solving skills used by practicing lawyers.
This transactional course teaches students how to negotiate basic business contracts such as leases, junk bond indentures and loan agreements. After studying principles of contractual interpretation and negotiation, students engage in five or more negotiating projects. For each project, students prepare a written analysis proposing strategic and tactical objectives and then implement their plans in actual negotiating sessions and drafting exercises.
Environmental Aspects of Business Transactions
This course uses the simulated sale of an actual facility (including the real estate and the business) to explore how environmental issues impact business transactions. Students learn the basic substantive knowledge and practical skills needed by lawyers practicing in the fields of business, real estate and environmental law. Students conduct legal and factual analysis in performing due diligence; draft and negotiate an environmental agreement; and draft and negotiate consent orders with regulators regarding environmental issues.
Mergers and Acquisition Transaction Planning
In this course, students conduct an in-depth study of the sale of a private company. Students learn — from both the buyer’s and the seller’s perspective — how to prepare a company for the sale process, conduct diligence on the company and analyze the appropriate structure for the transaction. Students also draft, mark up and negotiate provisions of various acquisition-related agreements.
Negotiation Theory and Practice
This course provides an overview of the theoretical issues confronted by negotiators and gives students an opportunity to practice and hone their negotiating skills. Topics include negotiation preparation; integrative and distributive bargaining; the effect of psychological factors and social norms in negotiation; unique issues that arise when lawyers are involved in negotiation; legal rules affecting the negotiation process; the personal styles of negotiators; differences between two-party and multi-party negotiating situations; the role of trust and emotion in negotiation; and the use of mediation as a technique to facilitate negotiation. Students conduct weekly negotiations to develop their negotiation skills.
Real Estate Law Clinic
This clinic offers students practical, hands-on training and experience working on live real estate transactions. Students in the clinic represent one or two nonprofit organizations at various stages in the process of developing affordable housing for low-income residents of Los Angeles.
Sports and the Law
This course provides an overview of major legal issues impacting professional and amateur team sports, including antitrust, labor and contract issues. A limited number of students have the opportunity to participate in a sports-related clinical exercise. In past years, students have worked with the general counsel for the Los Angeles Dodgers and corporate counsel from Toyota on a mock sponsorship agreement; other students have conducted a mock NBA salary negotiation with the assistance of the Los Angeles Lakers’ general manager and an experienced sports agent.