Separation of Powers in the Federal Courts Seminar

Section 1, Fall 22

Schedule Information

Enrollment: 11/15
Credits: 3
Days* Time Room Start Date End Date
  • T
  • 1200-1400
  • WB116
08/30/2022 12/06/2022
*“R” means Thursday

Course Description

This seminar will explore the development of separation of powers through litigation in the federal courts. How are checks and balances effectuated through the federal courts? What role, if any, should courts should have in public powers disputes? What is the effect of litigating powers disputes, rather than negotiating them? Topics covered will include, among others, (1) features of litigating separation-of-powers questions, (2) representation of interests by the U.S. Solicitor General, (3) the role of states in challenging use of federal power, (4) how and when Congress can sue the Executive Branch, and (5) procedural and remedial measures available to courts in these disputes. There will be a special emphasis on judicial power in both the Supreme Court and the lower federal courts.

Course Requirements

Exam Info:
Final Type (if any): None
Description: None

Written Work Product
Written Work Product: Students will write a research paper before the last day of class. Students wishing to use the paper to satisfy their upper-level writing requirement must submit a “special request” form to SRO by October 4th. The form and instructions are available via Law Web.

Other Work
Students will also share short responses (not due via EXPO) and will take a leadership role in discussion on a rotating basis throughout the semester.

Other Course Details
Prerequisites: (Constitutional Law (6001)). It is a bonus, but not required, for a student to have taken any public law course (e.g. Federal Courts, Administrative Law, Legislation, or Legislation and Regulation) Concurrencies:
Mutually Exclusive With: None
Laptops Allowed: No
First Day Attendance Required: No
Course Resources: To be announced.
Course Notes:

Graduation Requirements

*Satisfies Writing Requirement: No
**Credits For Prof. Skills Requirement: No
Satisfies Professional Ethics: No

*If “Yes,” then students are required to submit a substantial research paper in this course, which means students do not need to submit any form to SRO for this paper to meet their upper-level writing requirement. If “No,” then students must submit a “special request” e-form to SRO (available via LawWeb) no later than five weeks after the start of the term for a paper in this class to be counted toward the upper-level writing requirement.

**Yes indicates course credits count towards UVA Law’s Prof. Skills graduation requirement, not necessarily a skills requirements for any particular state bar.

Schedule No.
Law No.
Modified Type
ABA Seminar
Cross Listed: No
Cross-Listed Course Mnemonic:
Public Syllabus Link: None
Evaluation Portal Via LawWeb Opens: Wednesday, November 30, 12:01 AM
Evaluation Portal Via LawWeb Closes: Friday, December 09, 11:59 PM