Law School Students Advance to National Moot Court Competition

By Michael Seele
Chronicle Editor

    The Law School's National Moot Court Team has won a place among the nation's 28 best in the national moot court competition, which will be held next month in New York City.

    The four-member squad advanced to the nationals by virtue of its regional competition victory in November. Team members will argue a fictitious case based on a real matter now on the Supreme Court's docket.

    Team members Heather Hall, Heather Egan, Matt Loftus and Paul Montuori are spending three to four nights each week prepping for the event in two-hour sessions with Prof. Peter Donovan (Law), the team's coach.

    Donovan said the annual tournament-style event, which takes place during the first week in February, is the most prestigious student competition in American legal education. It will be judged by prominent New York lawyers, as well as judges from the Federal Appeals Court and, in the final round, a Supreme Court justice or two.

    The case the BC Law team will argue is based on a review of the benchmark Miranda case now pending before the Supreme Court, Donovan said. Students must be prepared to be either plaintiff or respondent, since a coin flip at the outset of each round of competition will determine which side they will argue. In this particular case, he said, the odds of winning are greatly affected by that coin flip, with the advantage going to the respondent.

    The team is trying to become the third BC Law School team to win the national moot court championship.
Previous winners were the 1967 and 1973 squads, while the 1979 team took second place. Donovan, who had a hand in coaching all those teams, said this year's squad "is one of the best that we've ever had.

    "I think we're in as good a spot as anyone to win it," he said.

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