The case problem distributed each fall presents a hypothetical lawsuit between two countries before the International Court of Justice. Issues can include international human rights violations, terrorism, environmental responsibilities, remedies for broken treaties or contracts, nuclear free zones, and theft of cultural antiquities.
Each International Moot Court member writes a brief and prepares an oral argument based on the given international problem. The first draft of the brief is written during September/October, and orals training is concentrated in late October.
The Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition:
The University of Minnesota Law School is among law schools from around the world that compete in the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition, sponsored by the Association of Student International Law Societies in Washington, D.C.
Students have the opportunity to compete in their second year. A five-member competition team is chosen in November; the other second-year students continue in the intramural program. Intramural participants rewrite their briefs in teams of two and engage in further rounds of intramural oral arguments, mostly during February and March.
The competition team works together in January and February to write two team briefs and prepare for the oral competition in February or March. Competitors who are successful at regionals advance to nationals in Washington, D.C. in April. Ultimately, international winners are selected.
Competition team members have the option of becoming International Moot Court directors in their third year of law school. Additional directors are selected from among members of the intramural program to reach a total of seven directors.
In recent years, Minnesota’s International Moot Court team has won a number of regional competitions, placed well at nationals, and brought home speaker and brief awards.