Consider Submitting An Entry To the Morris L. Cohen Student Essay Competition

The Legal History and Rare Books Section (LH&RB) of the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL), in cooperation with Gale, part of Cengage Learning, announces the seventh annual Morris L. Cohen Student Essay Competition. The competition is named in honor of Morris L. Cohen, late Professor Emeritus of Law at Yale Law School. Professor Cohen was a leading scholar in the fields of legal research, rare law books, and historical bibliography. The purpose of the competition is to encourage scholarship in the areas of legal history, rare law books, and legal archives, and to acquaint students with the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL) and law librarianship.

Students currently enrolled in accredited graduate programs in library science, law, history, or related fields are eligible to enter the competition. Both full- and part-time students are eligible. Membership in AALL is not required.

Essays may be on any topic related to legal history, rare law books, or legal archives. Please submit only one essay; additional submissions will not be considered. The entry form & instructions are available at the LH&RB website. Entries must be submitted by 11:59 p.m., March 16, 2015 (EST).

The winner will receive a $500.00 prize from Cengage Learning and up to $1,000 for expenses associated with attendance at the AALL Annual Meeting. The runner-up will have the opportunity to publish the second place essay in LH&RB’s online scholarly journal, Unbound: An Annual Review of Legal History and Rare Books.

Please direct questions to Marguerite Most at most@law.duke.edu or Tim Kearley at TKearley@uwyo.edu.


Back from the Snow Days!

We are back and hoping that subfreezing temperatures will be our only concern with the weather this week!

Library & Lexis Lunch & Learn Series

  • Wednesday, February 25th
    • Researching and Selecting Paper Topics with Shannon Kemen and Ashley Russell
    • 12:15 – 1:15 P.M. in Room 302
    • Lunch provided and Lexis points awarded; pre-registration was required.


The Chesley Lecture is Monday, February 23rd.

Professor Rachel E. Barkow, the Segal Professor of Law and Policy, New York University School of Law will present the lecture “Criminal Law as Regulation.” She will argue that the criminal justice system should be seen as a regulatory system. Barkow will give clemency as an example of an area that could be improved by applying the insights of administrative law and policy.

The lecture will be presented a 12:15 P.M. in Room 114.


Why Stay Home on a Snow Day?

Or more directly, “Why not go to the College of Law on a Snow Day?” First, a disclaimer: I am not an attorney and this post is not intended to provide legal advice to any individual. It is intended to provide general information.

Putting aside the common sense realization that travel is dangerous in conditions such as we have today, with snow and ice on the road, nearly record low temperatures, and irregular service from transit providers and restaurants, there is a legal reason for an employer such as UC to implement a policy that tells employees and commuter students to stay away.

For employees, eligibility for workers’ compensation relief requires that the employee’s injury occur while the employee is acting “within the scope of employment.” If the employee has been instructed to stay home by an official declaration within the employer’s policies, then the employee who nevertheless reports to the workplace is quite arguably acting outside the scope of employment. Hence, if the employee is injured on the way to or while at the place of employment, a workers’ compensation claim is likely to be denied.

For commuter students, a claim against the university would be based on the theory of negligence. Negligence requires that the actor failed to act reasonably, such as by failing to perform a duty that could be reasonably expected. By declaring a snow day, the university is informing the public, including its commuter students, that it may not be able to meet its duty to provide a safe environment for their presence on campus. It is meeting its duty to reasonably act to provide a safe environment by admitting that it may not be able to so provide, and hence the public should stay away. Visitors who have been so informed and nevertheless come to campus are arguably “assuming the risk.” Assumption of risk is one well-known defense to an action based on negligence.

Now that you are a little more familiar with the legal effects of a snow day declaration, you can factor in the legal risks as well as your own common sense in reaching what should be an easy decision: Stay Home!

Turn a Snow Day to Your Advantage

With the second straight snow day in effect at UC, law students can still accomplish work that will help them reach the end of the semester with as little stress as possible. Many law library resources are available online via links on our home page. These includes links to LexisAdvance, WestlawNext, Bloomberg Law, and many other research resources.

Course sites on Blackboard, TWEN, and LexisNexis Webcourses give you access to reading assignments, exercises, and other course materials. Some faculty may post additional lectures or assignments when classes are canceled due to weather. Please check your individual course sites for details.

The Marx Law Library Welcomes Candidates for Dean

We join the rest of the College of Law in welcoming the finalists to succeed Louis Bilionis as Dean of the College. The finalists will be visiting the campus beginning at the end of this week. They are, in order of visits:


In addition to the links to their curriculum vitae, you can find their itineraries and a form for submitting feedback at the information page hosted by the Provost’s Office. We encourage all members of the community to fully participate in the process of choosing the College’s next dean, and to show each what a terrific law school we have.

This Week in the Law Library

Get Help: In the Law Library and Online!

As we move into the second week of the semester, remember that Law Library staff are here to help you both in person and by providing online research guides that give you detailed information and practical tips on a range of subjects.

Legal Research Training Session This Week

  • Wednesday, January 28th
    • Prof. Lenhart’s section 1
      • Federal Law with Ron Jones
      • 10:40 A.M. – 12:05 P.M.
      • Room 100B


It’s Not Too Late: Add a Skills Class to Your Schedule

Are you looking to augment your practice skills? Look no further than these two classes taught by our librarians:

Advanced Legal Research (LITG 7049)

Advanced Legal Research goes beyond the basics you covered in first year legal research. You’ll get a refresher in the research skills you may have forgotten, and then move beyond that to learning about optimal use of research services and specialized subject research. The classroom is a hand-on experience, and you’ll work in teams to give you experience with collaboration and to let you share your knowledge with colleagues.

Technology in the Law Practice (PROP 7024)

This course gives you an overview of how technology is used by lawyers today. We focus on the ethical implications of using technology, and you’ll get information about the history, development, and current state of electronic technology in the law practice.

Add either or both courses during the Drop-Add period, which expires January 28 for online enrollment or February 3 for paper submissions to the Registrar’s Office.