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Super CLE Week XXXII: March 9-17, 2012

University of Minnesota Law School faculty members are, for the 32nd time, using spring break to offer continuing legal education opportunities on a range of relevant topics.

A total of 47 CLE credits have been requested (including 3 ethics and 2 bias).

All courses will be held in Room 25. Registration begins at 8:00 a.m.; seminars start at 8:30 a.m. and end at 4:30 p.m. (Except Friday, March 9, when the seminar begins at 1:00 p.m. and ends at 4:30 p.m. and Saturday, March 17, when the seminar begins at 9:00 a.m. and ends at 3:00 p.m.

Individual courses cost $225 each. For those attending multiple courses, a six-course SuperPass is available for $795, with additional courses for only $75.

For more continuing-education information, contact Law School CLE at LSCLE@umn.edu, or download the brochure for this program (PDF).

Friday, March 9

Leonard, Street and Deinard Presents:
Business Succession Planning

1:00 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.
3.0 CLE credits approved
Event # 162651



Business Succession Planning: A Roadmap - An overview of the process of business succession planning, including tax and non-tax considerations, working with a multidisciplinary team, and legal strategies for business succession.
David M. Naples and Margaret A. Cronin

Succession Issues Unique to S Corporations and Family Businesses - A review of the specific issues unique to S Corporations and family businesses when planning for the succession of the business.
Eileen M. Day

Pitfalls and Best Practices in Business Succession - A moderated panel discussion of the practical application of business succession advising; how to avoid shareholder litigation and resolve conflict; lessons learned from shareholder litigation, and what strategies and tactics will help avoid pitfalls and support a good plan for succession.
Douglas R. Peterson
, David M. Naples, Brenda S. Huebsch Bijnagte, and Professor Richard Painter
Moderator: Professor John Matheson



Saturday, March 10
Legal and Policy Trends in Education Law CLE

Professor Michele B. Goodwin
University of Minnesota
Law School

8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
6.5 CLE credits approved
Event # 162660



Legal and Policy Trends in Education Law CLE focuses on legal and policy developments in education law. Over the past fifty years, legal decisions in education law have affected where and how students will be educated, how schools are funded, and illuminated underlying cultural tensions in America regarding race, gender, sexuality, class, and religion. This CLE brings cases, policies, regulations and the social and legal tensions accompanying them into focus by examining the most recent trends in education law, including appellate and Supreme Court decisions, while also providing a brief overview of the historical developments in K-12 and higher education law. The goals of this CLE are to provide lawyers with an understanding of legal developments in education policy in the United States, to help attorneys identify social developments and trends that might affect their clients, and to highlight potential cases and conflicts on the horizon in this domain. The format of this CLE will include lecture and case study.

This CLE has five components. It begins with an examination of trends in the category of “Education and Discrimination.” This component includes topics such as affirmative action, redistricting, and sexual harassment. The course continues with a focus on the “First Amendment and Legal Developments in Education,” which includes education and religion, free speech issues involving students and teachers (as well as administrators). This component is particularly timely given recent appellate decisions addressing off-campus cyber speech of students. Other topics that will be covered include Privacy and Security, Title IX and Disability Law. The workshop is designed to encourage participation and analytical discussion of cases and other materials.



Monday, March 12
Hot Topics in Contract and Commercial Law

Professor Brian Bix
University of Minnesota
Law School

8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
6.5 CLE credits approved
Event # 162662



Hot Topics in Contract and Commercial Law will offer a sample of some of the most important and controversial topics in current contract law and commercial law. Among the topics that will be explored are the enforceability of mandatory arbitration provisions (including provisions that waive the right to class actions), recent developments in international commercial transactions (focusing on the CISG and UNIDROIT principles), the revisions to UCC Article 1, and the developing rules of electronic contracting (including the treatment of "click-wrap," "browse-wrap," and "shrink-wrap" terms).



Tuesday, March 13
The Freedom of Speech Since World War I

Professor Dale Carpenter
University of Minnesota
Law School

8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
6.5 CLE credits approved
Event # 162666



The Freedom of Speech Since World War will examine the Supreme Court's interpretation and application of the First Amendment's protection of speech and freedom of association. It will begin with theories of the role of speech in a free society. It will then examine the first inklings of judicial protection for speech starting with the World War I Espionage Act cases. Categories of 'unprotected' speech will be analyzed, including incitement, fighting words, libel, threats, and obscenity. The critical distinction between content-based and content-neutral restrictions on speech will be discussed in cases involving matters like flag-burning, nude dancing, and zoning restrictions on adult establishments. Recent cases involving the protection of commercial speech and campaign finance restrictions will be addressed. Finally, an introduction to the freedom of association will also be included.



Wednesday, March 14
MBA Concepts for Lawyers

Professor Edward S. Adams
University of Minnesota
Law School

8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
6.5 CLE credits approved
Event # 162668



We are in remarkable times. The stock and real estate markets have collapsed. The government is printing money at an unprecedented pace. Looming budget deficits promise to dramatically increase interest rates. Do you understand the reasons for the collapse of the real estate market? Do you believe you know where the stock market is heading? Do you understand why GM is headed into oblivion? Do you understand basic business concepts? Can you communicate with businesspeople using their terms? Do you believe you might be a more valued attorney to your clients if you could talk the talk and walk the walk of business? This course provides you with an overview of the relevant quantitative skills acquired by and concepts introduced to M.B.A students during their two-year course of study. Among other things, this course will teach you how to:

  • Understand basic accounting principles;
  • Read an annual report and analyze financial statements;
  • Look beyond mere numbers to gauge the real financial performance and strength of a an entity; and
  • Employ cash flow analysis to value a business or determine the potential financial risks or rewards of an investment opportunity

America is in a period of tremendous change. Now, more than ever, understanding basic business concepts is indispensable to an effective and successful legal career. Those who understand business promise to thrive, or at least survive, in their careers. Those who cannot, risk being left behind, or worse.



Thursday, March 15
New Frontiers in Responding to Climate Change: From Local Action to Litigation to Geoengineering

Professor Hari Osofsky
University of Minnesota
Law School


8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
6.5 CLE credits approved
Event # 162670


Current efforts to address climate change through a traditional, multilateral treaty based approach are failing. Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change have not reached agreement on the fundamentals of how to move forward when the Kyoto Protocol expires in 2012. In the United States, Congress has failed to pass comprehensive climate change litigation, and the most significant efforts to regulate greenhouse gases are taking place under the Clean Air Act. Carbon dioxide concentrations in August 2011 were at 390 parts per million, well over the threshold of 350 parts per million that scientists say would be safest for us to stay below, and quickly approaching the threshold of 450 parts per million above which risks of major climate change increase dramatically.

This Super CLE will provide an overview of this dire state of affairs, and then explore three innovative efforts to move beyond these deadlocks. First, climate change litigation, only a few years ago regarded as a boundary-pushing, has become an important vehicle in pushing for needed action. Second, cities and states, even small suburban ones in the Twin Cities metropolitan region, have begun local efforts on climate change, clean energy, and sustainability, and are collaborating in state, regional, national, and international networks. Third, scientists and policymaking are increasingly looking at potentially very risky ways of reversing climate change through geoengineering strategies like putting particles into the atmosphere or ocean, but the regulatory framework for that research and those initiatives is very underdeveloped. The Super CLE will consider the complex legal issues involved with each of these strategies and possibilities for addressing climate change more effectively.



Friday, March 16
Conflicts of Interest from the Courtroom and the Boardroom to the Situation Room

Professor Richard Painter
University of Minnesota
Law School

8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
3.5 CLE credits approved
3.0 ethics credits approved
Event # 162673


Conflicts of interest – between two or more clients and between lawyers and their clients – are common in litigation and transactional representation. Conflicts are also common for corporate officers and directors as well as for government officials who make decisions in important areas such as economic policy and national defense. Different legal rules – and different procedures to implement these rules – apply in each of these contexts. The overarching objective, however, is the same: to the extent possible to prevent conflicts of interest from undermining obligations of fiduciaries entrusted with the personal affairs or property of others or with the public welfare.

This course will review conflict of interest rules in three key areas: the law governing lawyers, corporate and securities laws governing public and private companies; and government ethics statutes and rules. In the professional responsibility area, we will discuss how the ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct, as well as Securities and Exchange Commission rules for securities lawyers, approach conflicts of interest between clients and between lawyers and their clients. Recent cases in which conflicts have been alleged will also be discussed. Conflicts in corporations and other business organizations will be examined in the context of state corporate law and federal securities law, and also key provisions of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 and the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010 that address conflicts of interest. Finally, we will examine conflicts of interest in government from the vantage point of federal conflicts of interest statutes (see e.g. 18 U.S.C. 208 on financial conflicts of interest) and United States Office of Government Ethics (OGE) rules, as well as the 1995 Lobbying Disclosure Act, the Hatch Act, procurement law and campaign finance law.

In each of these three different contexts – law practice, business and government – the course will examine the predominant jurisprudential approach to conflicts of interest (civil vs. criminal liability; broad standards vs. detailed rules, etc.). Participants will also discuss the limits of legal regulation: where the law for practical or constitutional reasons must end and persons who have entrusted fiduciaries with their affairs – clients, shareholders and citizens – must act on their own to monitor and manage the conflicts of their fiduciaries.



Saturday, March 17

Professor Stephen M. Simon
University of Minnesota
Law School

9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
3.0 ethics credits approved
Event # 162674

1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
2.0 bias credits approved
Event # 162675


The Morning Session (Three Hours)
Ethics and the Practice of Criminal Law

This course will examine ethical issues, from both the prosecution and defense perspective, that have arisen in actual criminal cases. We will use these cases as vehicles to discuss the application, interplay and often the conflict of the rules of professional conduct, attorney-client privilege, competency of counsel and the duty of the prosecutor to seek justice. Criminal cases are fast moving and criminal trials, by their very nature, inherently involved many ethical issues. An attorney facing an ethical issue during a criminal trial or pre-trial court appearance must make a rapid decision about how to proceed. Often the decision involves conflicts between the rules of professional conduct, the attorney-client privilege and the constitutional entitlement to a competent attorney. Ethical issues arising in criminal cases that Professor Steve Simon has participated in over the past 40 years will be the vehicles to discuss Ethics in the Practice of Criminal Law. Over the last 40 years Professor Simon has been a public defender, a prosecutor, an attorney in private practice doing criminal defense work and, for the last 30 years, Director of the Misdemeanor Defense and Prosecution Clinics at the University of Minnesota Law School. We will also discuss ethical issues that participants in the course have experienced in their own practice.

Examples of the cases and ethical issues that will be discussed include:

  • A client tells his attorney that he has brought a knife, used in the assault that he is on trial for, into the courtroom during his trial thinking the jury might want to see it. The judge and jury will be entering the courtroom in less than 10 minutes. What should the defense attorney do?
  • A defense attorney is representing co-defendants. The prosecutor tells her that she really wants a conviction for one of the defendants and is willing to dismiss the charge against the other defendant if the first defendant pleads guilty. Can the defense attorney continue to represent both clients?
  • You are the prosecutor. During jury selection a panel member tells you that he is “Born Again Christian.” You also consider yourself a “Born Again Christian.” You also know your opposing attorney is Jewish. Is it proper for you to tell the panel member (and the rest of the panel) of your shared similar faith?

The Afternoon Session (Two Hours)
Identifying and Eliminating Bias and Discrimination in the Legal System: Codes, Cases, and Other Constraints

In 1989, the Minnesota Supreme Court's Gender Fairness Task Force issued its final report. In 1993 the Task Force on Racial Bias issued its report. Since 1989, over 40 jurisdictions, both state and federal, have issued reports on gender or race bias in the legal system. Minnesota has also done studies of the issues faced by persons with disabilities in the legal system. These studies have uniformly found, to one degree or another, that gender and race bias by lawyers, judges, court personnel, parties and witnesses are still a fixture of the legal system. Professional rules, both for lawyers and judges have been amended to reflect the reality of these findings. The Rules and codes attempt to define such behavior as unprofessional. In many jurisdictions, lawyers are prohibited from engaging in conduct that violates laws against discrimination, or from engaging in conduct which would be considered sexual harassment. Judges have an affirmative duty to prevent biased behavior in their courtrooms.

What does this all mean for the practicing lawyer? In this half-day course we will examine a number of issues in this challenging and changing area. The course will review the studies, Rules, Codes and cases. We will discuss specific scenarios for lawyers and judges and discuss the appropriate actions for lawyers and judges to prevent and correct conduct which violates professional norms.


Super CLE 2012