161 classroom hours
Learning Outcomes: Students will gain a working knowledge of the NC and federal court systems, the stages of civil litigation and the rules of civil procedure. Students will learn how to gather information and evidence in a civil lawsuit. Students will gain a thorough understanding of the discovery process and will be able prepare appropriate discovery devices and respond to discovery requests. Students will be able to draft complaints, answers and motions and will be able to file and obtain service of court documents. Students will be able to prepare a trial notebook and a settlement brochure. Topics include: Stages of a civil action; organization of N.C. and Federal court systems; personal and subject matter jurisdiction; rules of procedure; basic principles of tort and contract; role of the paralegal in litigation; confidentiality and conflicts of interest. Investigation of facts; evidence; interviewing of clients and witnesses; ethical considerations in interviewing; preparation of diagrams and maps; location and review of public records; obtaining and reviewing medical records; expert witnesses. Commencement of action; parties and capacity; requirements and drafting of complaint, answer, counterclaim, reply; affirmative defenses; joinder of claims and parties; process and service of process; motions addressed to the pleadings; case intake and management; docket control.
Purpose and scope of discovery under N.C. and Federal rules; preparing for and digesting depositions; drafting and responding to interrogatories; requests for production of documents; sanctions and protective orders. Preparation for trial; pretrial conference and order; preparation of settlement brochure and trial notebook; assisting at trial. Judgments and mechanisms for enforcement of judgments; appeals; notice of appeal and route of appeal. Electives: Within this specialty, students will enroll in five 4-week courses in substantive areas of the law. Students will receive one grade for the specialty course which will include the grades they have received in the short courses. Pre-requisite: LEG 010, LEG 011, LEG 012, LEG 013 (semester 1)