Law 700 - Pretrial Civil Litigation

David Babbe

David Babbe

Lecturer in Law
B.A. UC Irvine, 1978
J.D. UCLA, 1981
Course Description:

This course is designed for students who will be doing civil litigation. The course provides a “real world” overview of how pretrial civil litigation is conducted and explores how lawyers strategically use each step in the pretrial litigation process to advance their clients’ interests. The course also provides students with skills-based training in case analysis, depositions, motion practice and negotiation. These skills are taught through a combination of lectures, discussions, demonstrations, and simulated role-playing exercises. Simulations are videotaped and critiqued by the instructor.

Course Learning Outcomes:

Here are our three basic learning objectives for this class:

  1.       We want you to understand how the civil pretrial litigation process actually works in practice. 
  2.     We want you to understand how lawyers think strategically to advance the interests of their clients at each stage of the pretrial litigation process. 
  3.   We want you to learn the following basic skills that you will be using in practice as young lawyers:  arguing motions, developing and implementing a discovery plan, drafting discovery requests and taking and defending depositions.  

This course will not make you an expert in the civil pretrial litigation process; nor will it turn you into an expert in arguing motions, developing and implementing discovery plans, or taking and defending depositions. By the end of this course, however, we expect that:

            

  1.  You will have a basic understanding of the civil pretrial process and how lawyers use that process both to prepare cases for trial and to evaluate cases for settlement. 
  2. You will have a basic understanding of how to think strategically when confronted with litigation options/decisions.
  3.  You will be able to competently argue a motion to dismiss or demurrer and a discovery motion.
  4. You will be able to develop a discovery plan for a relatively simple civil case and to draft written discovery requests.
  5. You will be able to competently take and defend a deposition in a relatively simple litigation matter. 

Course Information:
​Faculty Term Course Section ​Schedule ​Units Requisite Satisfies SAW
David Babbe 20F 700 LEC 1 MW 3:20 PM - 5:20 PM 4.0 Yes No
  Prerequisite: Law 145. Civil Procedure. Experiential course enrollment through separate process; deadline July 27, noon. See ENROLL.LAW.UCLA.EDU. Early drop deadline: 5:00 pm on 8/28/2020.
David Babbe / Amelia Collins 21S 700 LEC 2 TR 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM 4.0 No No
  Prerequisite: Law 145. Civil Procedure. Experiential course enrollment through separate process; deadline: Noon on 11/6/20. See ENROLL.LAW.UCLA.EDU. Early drop deadline: 5:00pm on 1/29/21.This course may shift to hybrid instruction (i.e., students have the option of participating in-person or remotely) at some time during the spring semester.
Textbook Information:
Textbook for Fall 2020 LEC 1
Bocchino, Hoffman and Malone. The Effective Deposition: Techniques and Strategies That Work  5th ed.  
ISBN: 9781601567741. National Institute for Trial Advocacy. REQUIRED $104.00
Roen and Reich. Civil Litigation: Pretrial Case Development and Discovery    
ISBN: 9781634608640. West Academic Publishing. REQUIRED $101.00