June 21, 2010
Harvard Law School students participating in this year’s Supreme Court Litigation Clinic wound up winning a hat trick this year, with the Supreme Court ruling in their favor in all three cases in which the clinic’s students were involved.
Co-taught by Amy Howe and Kevin Russell, partners in the firm Howe & Russell, and Tom Goldstein, a partner at Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Field, the course took place during this year’s winter term in Washington, D.C.
“We were delighted with the results in all three of the cases in which the students were involved,” said Howe. “The students were an integral part of the effort in each case, and having them in Washington not only allowed us to work closely with them but also allowed them to become immersed in the workings of the Court more generally.”
Howe argued Abbott v. Abbott, an international child custody case, in mid-January. Three students: Leif Overvold ’10, Josh Branson ’10, and Katherine Wevers LL.M. ’10, worked with Howe on oral argument preparation and strategy as part of the course. The Court issued its decision in mid-May.
In consumer protection case Jerman v. Carlisle, Russell had the assistance of three students on oral argument preparation and strategy: Dina Guzovsky ’11, Jesenka Mrdjenovic ’10, and Jay Rapaport ’11. Initially argued in mid-January, the Court issued its decision in April.
Goldstein argued Hamilton v. Lanning, a bankruptcy case, in March, with the Court issuing its decision mid-June. Students James Bickford ’10, Ray Seile ’10, Kathryn Nielson ’10, and Luke Appling ’10 worked with Goldstein on drafting the brief on the merits for the respondent, Stephanie Lanning.
Three students from last year’s winter term clinic contributed to this year’s successes: Eric Nguyen ’09, Jane Wang ’10, and Andrew Corkhill LL.M. ’09 worked on the Abbott case and drafted the petition for certiorari in Jerman.
Along with writing and filing a petition for certiorari, a brief in opposition to certiorari, merits brief, amicus brief, and preparing for oral arguments, the students participated in a series of lectures and classroom discussions on Supreme Court practice. The clinic participants attended arguments at the Supreme Court, participated in moot courts, and met with leading members of the Supreme Court bar, former Supreme Court clerks, and members of the Supreme Court press corps.