Student Team Headed to National Transactional Law Moot Court Competition

Eddie Sniezek '16, Willard Younger '18 and Yue Wang '17 recently won a competition designed to teach students to handle issues in transactional law.

March 21, 2016

A team from the University of Virginia School of Law recently won two awards at a LawMeets moot court competition on transactional law, which advances them to the finals in New York City.

Willard Younger ’18, Yue Wang ’17 and Eddie Sniezek ’16 won best overall performance and best brief at the competition, held on Feb. 26 at Drexel University in Philadelphia. They negotiated a hypothetical merger between two fictional companies marketing related technologies. The UVA Law team, sponsored by the Virginia Law & Business Society, will move on to the national meet, hosted by Sullivan & Cromwell, on April 1. 

This is the first year that UVA Law has participated in the annual competition. “This experience has been truly enlightening," Younger, a New Jersey native, said. "As a first-year student, this has been a great opportunity to learn more about the negotiation process that surrounds a transaction and to put that new knowledge into practice."

Younger hopes to practice transactional law in the future, with a focus on private equity.

Prior to the regional competition, teams prepared a proposed draft agreement and provided markups on agreements submitted by teams from other law schools. They also had the opportunity to communicate with mock clients, which helped the students gain insight into transactional concerns and managing client needs. At the meet, students participated in two negotiation sessions, judged by a panel of practicing experts.

The Philadelphia regional meet was one of eight regional meets. At each, one winner was selected for the "buy side" and another for the "sell side." The UVA Law team represented a company attempting to sell one of its business units in exchange for stock.

The regional winning teams will negotiate the same topics at the national meet. They will once again engage in the markup process and will have the opportunity to revise their draft agreements based on feedback.

 “Our conversations gave us a lot of insight into what we can do better as negotiators and how we can best protect our client's interests while still accomplishing our primary goal of getting the deal done,” Younger said.

Wang, a Shanghai native who hopes to practice general corporate law, said she’s looking forward to continuing to meet industry professionals through the competition, and to continue being challenged.

“It is an exceptional hands-on learning experience for students who plan to do transactional work in the future,” Wang said. “Especially because drafting term sheets and negotiating a deal probably won’t be most junior associates’ first batch of assignments, the opportunity we are offered right now — to try our hands in simulated settings and to get substantive feedback from seasoned attorneys involved in high-stakes deals — is immensely valuable for our future practice.”

Founded in 1819, the University of Virginia School of Law is the second-oldest continuously operating law school in the nation. Consistently ranked among the top law schools, Virginia is a world-renowned training ground for distinguished lawyers and public servants, instilling in them a commitment to leadership, integrity and community service.

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