On November 1, students from AAU’s School of Law participated in a unique event to improve their professional skills and prepared them for real-life proceedings: A Moot Court.

Last Wednesday, students from the class of “Advanced Legal Writing and Research” (ALWR) taught by James Heller, prepared their briefs and stood before the judges to argue their case.

“The session was as realistic as possible,” said James, who is a lawyer himself. “While it is the judge's role to make determinations of the law and to follow proper court procedure, the judge depends on counsel (barristers and solicitors) to present facts and to make arguments based on the law. In this sense, the judge is guided by counsel, who are officers of the court.”  

James also commented that Scott Prange, who took on the role of President of the Supreme Court, was realistic, though a tough judge.

“Some of the questions he was asking may have appeared to a novice designed to undermine aspects of the counsels' arguments,” James continued. “Though, in reality, he was simply testing the veracity of counsels' arguments. This often happens in real court.”  

Some notable case subjects were:

  • The right of EU citizens to continue to reside in the UK following Brexit

  • The balance between free speech and culpability for internet intermediary sites for defamatory speech

  • Standards for holding professional advisers responsible under theories of negligence and pure economic loss.

James said that he was impressed with all students who participated in the moot, including Natalia Kokesova, Angelina Liverko, Ilya Merzlyakov, Silvie Miarkova, Liliia Danylenko, Dexter Schaller, Ariel Leitner and Adam Sybera.

“Participating in a Moot Court was an useful experience,” said Natalia. “The Supreme Court questioning may be viewed as intense but it is their role to scrutinize your work. This resembles a real-life court proceeding. The constant questioning and debate improves a law student's advocating skills and prepares him or her for real-life proceedings.”

Read more about Natalia’s Moot Court experience on our Medium page.

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Chau Nguyen


Publication date: November 07, 2017