Summer 2021 Course List

Review the exam schedule under "Exam Information and Policies" before registering for classes to make sure there are no conflicts.

You may click on the name of each course for the course description and pre-requisites.

Bar courses cover significant subject matter tested on the Multi-State Professional Responsibility Exam, the Multi-state Bar Exam, or the Texas Bar Exam. For more detailed information about these and other courses which cover subject matter relevant to the bar exam, please see "The Bar Exam: SMU Course Recommendations."  If you are planning to take a bar exam in another state, you should contact the bar examiners office in that state to determine the subjects tested on that exam.  If you have any questions, please see the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs.

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NameClassCatalogSectionProfessorExamTimeDayRoomHrsYearNewBar ExamDescription

This is the basic business law course. The emphasis of the first portion of the course is on the closely held business. To be considered are the following: Agency: General principles of the law of agency. Partnerships (general and limited): Formation, control, liabilities, property, dissolution and disposition of business; internal and external relations of partners. Limited Liability Companies and Corporations: Formation, control, allocation concerns; duties, liabilities, and rights of management and shareholders or members; dispute resolution devices; and fundamentals of capitalization and financing (including basic securities financing and securities law concerns, particularly respecting the private exempt offering). The primary emphasis of the second portion of the course is on the widely owned business. In this portion, general corporate governance and capitalization problems (including preferred stock and debt securities structuring) are further explored, along with corporate distributions and repurchases and fundamental corporate changes. Analysis of mergers and acquisitions is emphasized. Depending on available time, emphasis also is placed on the impact of federal securities laws on the corporate governance structure, including discussion of ongoing public disclosure requirements, proxy regulations, and insider trading restrictions and liabilities. The course is transaction-oriented, whereby planning and problem-solving are stressed, and interdisciplinary use of basic taxation, accounting, and finance notions is made. Special attention is given to the modern statutory trends.

DEPOSITIONS (EL) (*MAY TERM)11556259001JACKSONPERFORMANCE100-500PMMay 18-June 2Virtual22FalseF

This experiential short course on depositions is designed for students who plan to practice litigation, though it will also benefit the transactional lawyer by providing insight into the litigation discovery process. Focuses on the practical aspects of taking, defending, and preparing witnesses for depositions, including depositions of corporate representatives and expert witnesses. Students prepare for, take, and defend depositions using simulated cases. Students also review and comment on depositions of people in well-known cases

FAMILY LAW (Bar)222763470011LEATHERBERRYEXAM (7 / 9 at 4:00pm)400-540PMMWTH207F/Hybrid32FalseT

The legal problems of the family including marriage, annulment, divorce, legitimacy, custody, support of family members, adoption, and related matters. This course does not include Texas matrimonial property law. If the student plans to take instruction in both courses, this course should be taken first.

GOV'T & PUBLIC INTEREST EXTERNSHIP (EL) (Includes a 3 Hr Extern) (Only meets May 10, 11, 12) (*MAY TERM)11536117001BURSTEINPAPER / PRESENTATION900AM-1200PMMTWVirtual42FalseF

The Government and Public Interest Externship Program is an academic program that combines a weekly public sector law class with hands-on fieldwork in nonprofit and government legal departments. Students who pass both the class and externship components receive one credit for the classroom component and 2-3 hours credit for their field work (depending on the hours worked at the placement).


The Government and Public Interest Externship Program is an academic program that combines a weekly public sector law class with hands-on fieldwork in nonprofit and government legal departments. Students who pass both the class and externship components receive one credit for the classroom component and 2-3 hours credit for their field work (depending on the hours worked at the placement).


This course focuses on the essential concepts of international humanitarian law (also known as the law of armed conflict or 'LOAC) as derived from international treaty law, customary law and the experience of history. The inquiry will focus on the law applicable to today's conflicts, whether internal, transnational, or international; whether involving armed opposition groups or the armed forces of nation-States. I will begin with a survey of the history and sources of the LOAC, examine the principles and application of the LOAC, and then explore specific areas of interest, including the obligations and protections afforded combatants and non-combatants, permissible means and methods of warfare, the law of occupation and neutrality, the definition and prosecution of war crimes and the implementation of the law of war in U.S. domestic law and policy.

Prerequisites: Int'l LLMs must gain approval prior to enrolling


An analysis of principles and rules governing the conduct of lawyers. Topics include the client-lawyer relationship, competence, confidentiality, loyalty, the roles of lawyers as counselors and advocates, public service, advertising, admission to practice, and professional discipline.

REAL ESTATE TRANSACTIONS (Bar) (*MAY TERM)11507326001CAMPTAKE HOME330-530PMMTWTH (also F June 4)Karcher/Hybrid32FalseT

Transfer, finance, and development of real property; the real estate sales contract; the duties and remedies of sellers, purchasers, and brokers; conveyancing; title protection, including recording laws, the mechanics of title search, clearing titles, and title insurance; real estate finance, including mortgages and federal programs; condominiums, cooperatives, and shopping centers. Some emphasis on Texas law.


The Small Business Clinic provides free legal services to new and existing small businesses and non-profit organizations who cannot afford to pay legal fees, while providing our students with training and experience in how to be a transactional lawyer. Student lawyers advise clients in the start-up of their business and assist in preparing necessary legal documents. The student lawyers will also form and give advice to non-profit organizations. Student lawyers will learn how to deal with clients involving transactional business law. Students in the Small Business Clinic will experience the transactional practice of law with real clients who have real issues in the business world. The Trademark Clinic is part of the Small Business Clinic and a member of the USPTO Law School Clinic program. Student lawyers gain specific experience in advising clients about basic trademark matters as well as drafting, filing and handling trademark applications with the USPTO. If you are accepted for the Small Business Clinic, you will also handle trademark matters. Business Enterprise and Counseling the Small Business Owner are pre-requisites. Students must be in good academic standing and have completed 50 percent of all course requirements.

Prerequisites: Business Enterprise; Forming & Operating Closely-Held Businesses is recommended; 50% of course requirements; Good standing

TRUSTS AND ESTATES (BAR)223183957011GROSSMANEXAM (7 / 12 at 6:00pm)600-740PMMTTHVirtual32FalseT

A general survey of the law relating to family wealth transmission, taking into account transfers within the probate system - wills and intestate succession - and transfers outside it, with special attention to trusts. Topics include the legal definition of family relationships; formalities required for execution and revocation of wills and other donative documents; mental capacity and volition; drafting pitfalls, post-execution events, and difficulties of interpretation; legal protections offered to a decedent's spouse and children; will substitutes such as life insurance, pension plans, and rights of survivorship; planning for incapacity and other changes in circumstances; obligations and powers of fiduciaries; rights of creditors and beneficiaries; trust creation, supervision, modification, duration, and termination; charitable purposes; and the impact of tax policy on estate planning.