Graduate Law Program Course Descriptions - Capital University Law School

Graduate Law Program Course Descriptions

  • The following is an alphabetical list of the required and elective courses within the LL.M. in Taxation, LL.M. in Business & Taxation, LL.M. in Business and the M.T. programs. Select a course to jump to its description and pre- and co-requisites following the list.

    860 Advanced Individual Income Tax Problems 
    779 Air Pollution Law and Policy 
    716 Business Bankruptcy 
    903 Business Negotiation 
    930 Business Planning Practicum 
    721 Computer Law 
    714 Consumer Bankruptcy 
    774 Copyright Law 
    703 Corporate Counsel 
    705 Corporate Finance 
    855 Corporate Taxation 
    902 Dispute Resolution 
    928 Drafting for Estate Planning 
    817 Employment Discrimination 
    811 Employment Law 
    783 Energy Law 
    780 Environmental Law 
    938 Environmental Law Practicum 
    878 ERISA Tax Deferred Qualified Compensation Plans 
    850 Estate & Gift Taxation 
    879 Executive Compensation 
    858 Federal Tax Procedure 
    781 Hazardous Waste Law and Policy 
    822 Health Law 
    830 Immigration and Naturalization 
    872 Income Taxation of Trusts & Estates 
    982 Independent Research Project 
    720 Insurance Law 
    898 Insurance Taxation 
    770 Intellectual Property 
    880 International Taxation I 
    813 Labor Arbitration 
    810 Labor Law 
    760 Land Use Controls 
    868 Limited Liability Companies 
    910 Mediation 
    904 Negotiation 
    856 Partnership Tax 
    772 Patent Law 
    821 Public Health Law 
    896 Real Estate Taxation 
    704 Securities Regulation 
    853 State and Local Taxation 
    865 Subchapter S Corporations and Advanced Pass-Through Entities 
    876 Tax and Professional Responsibility 
    890 Tax Exempt Organizations 
    862 Tax Research & Communication I 
    863 Tax Research II 
    854 Taxation of Business Entities 
    776 Unfair Trade Practices 
    778 Water Resources Law and Policy 

    The following are the required and elective courses within the LL.M. in Taxation, LL.M. in Business & Taxation, LL.M. in Business and the M.T. programs. Where a prerequisite or co-requisite is listed, it is a pre- or co-requisite only with respect to the listed degree that immediately precedes it.

    A. Taxation Courses:

    860 Advanced Individual Income Tax Problems (2 credits) The course utilizes selected problems to cover the major income tax issues for individuals. Topics covered include definition of gross income, business deductions, income splitting, sales and other dispositions of property, gains and losses, and timing issues. (Formerly Selected Problems of Federal Taxation)

    862 Tax Research & Communication I (2 credits) An introduction to tax research and communication. The student is responsible for completing certain exercises and drafting tax documents utilizing tax research techniques.

    863 Tax Research II (2 credits) A seminar requiring the preparation of a comprehensive research paper. LL.M. prerequisite: completion of twelve credit hours of which two must be in 862. M.T. prerequisite: completion of twelve credit hours of which four must be in 860 and 862. 

    Business Taxation:

    854 – Taxation of Business Entities (3 credits) This survey course will cover the basics of taxation of business entities. It will include an introduction to Federal taxation of C Corporations, Partnerships, LLC’s, and S Corporations. This course is designed primarily for students interested in business and will focus on identification and resolution of tax issues in common business transactions. This course may not be taken if the student is enrolled in the LL.M. in Taxation or M.T. programs, nor may it be used to replace the Corporation and Partnership tax courses required in those programs. The course is a required course for students enrolled in the LL.M. in Business.

    855 - Corporate Taxation (3 credits) Tax considerations in corporate formation, distributions, redemption and liquidation including tax consequences of corporate reorganizations, mergers and acquisitions, consolidations, and divisions. M.T. prerequisite: 860; pre- or co-requisite: 862.

    856 - Partnership Tax (3 credits) The meaning of partnership taxation including formation, transactions between partner and partnership, determination and treatment of partnership income and losses, sales or exchange of partnership interests, distributions, retirement, death of partner, and drafting the partnership agreement. M.T. prerequisite: 860; pre- or co-requisite: 862.

    865 - Subchapter S Corporations and Advanced Pass-Through Entities (2 credits) Advanced corporate tax problems including Subchapter S Corporations, professional corporations, personal holding companies and punitive taxes on earnings accumulation, and collapsible corporations. M.T. pre-requisite: 860; pre- or co-requisite: 862.

    868 - Limited Liability Companies (1 or 2 credits) An examination of the 1994 legislation regarding limited liability companies. Other forms of business entities such as C-corporations, S-corporations and various forms of partnerships are explored for purposes of comparing and contrasting these entities to limited liability companies. M.T. prerequisite: 860; pre- or co-requisite: 862.

    Estate and Trust Taxation:

    850 - Estate & Gift Taxation (3 credits) Substantive provisions of federal estate and gift tax laws and the generation skipping transfer provisions, including transfer with retention of interest or power, joint interests, life insurance proceeds, property subject to powers of appointment, marital deduction and split gifts. (Formerly Wealth Transfer Taxation) M.T. prerequisite: 860; pre- or co-requisite: 862. (Note: M.T. students must obtain permission of the professor to enroll in this course.)

    872 - Income Taxation of Trusts & Estates (2 credits) Taxation of income of simple trusts, complex trusts, and grantor trusts; discussion of rules unique to trusts and estates, including distributable net income, charitable deduction, distribution deduction, and income in respect of decedents. M.T. prerequisite: 860; pre- or co-requisite: 862.

    928 - Drafting for Estate Planning (2 credits) Prototype dispositive schemes for the married couple and how to draft them; the use and drafting of “inter-vivos” trusts in estate planning including the minor's trust, insurance trust, charitable trust; tax planning for the executive including year of termination tax accounting problems, business valuation freeze techniques, sale of a business, and selection of deferred compensation profits. LL.M. prerequisite: 850, M.T. prerequisites 860, 850; pre- or co-prerequisite: 862.

    Tax Procedure and Professional Responsibility:

    858 - Federal Tax Procedure (2 credits) The focus of this course is on federal tax procedure. Areas covered include: organization and operation of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), audits, administrative appeals, deficiency procedures and litigation, refund claims and suits for refund, summons and other investigative authority of the IRS, access to IRS information, assessments, collections, private letter rulings, penalties and interest, and an introduction to criminal tax procedure.

    876 - Tax and Professional Responsibility (2 credits) Examination of the ethical problems that confront the tax practitioner, including problems of return preparation, flagging weakness, review of returns, post-return developments, audits, disclosure of adverse facts and law.

    Compensation Taxation:

    878 – ERISA Tax Deferred Qualified Compensation Plans (2 credits)
    This course will cover tax code principles of tax deferral, various non-qualified plan options and other tax qualified arrangements such as IRAS and SEPS, 403(b) and 457(b) and (f) plans. Coverage will focus on the core internal Revenue Code sections relating to various qualified plan options, coverage and participation alternatives, contribution and benefit limits, vesting and benefit protection rules, discrimination rules, salary deferral opportunities under 401(k), merger and acquisition rules, control group and affiliates service group rules, fiduciary and investment management oversight, reporting and disclosure rules, and certain health and welfare benefit rules. The course culminates with a practicum-style case study which simulates the experience of a law firm associate working in tax/benefits department. During the case study, students will be required to design compensation plans that achieve the management and financial goals of a simulated client. This interactive process will help the focused and prepared student develop the critical thinking and problem solving skills necessary to succeed in practice and will demonstrate how a skilled attorney uses the tax code, regulations and related authorities to meet the business and financial concerns of clients. In short, the exercise demonstrates the importance of integrating theory and practice skills to successfully serve the needs of clients. M.T. prerequisite: 860; pre- or co-requisite: 862.

    879 - Executive Compensation (2 credits) A review of executive compensation practices of public, private and tax-exempt employers. The course will examine the elements and structure of executive compensation as well as the limitations imposed on executive compensation by the Internal Revenue Code and the Employee Retirement Income Security Act. The class will explore the use of executive employment agreements, and life insurance, nonqualified deferred compensation and equity plans. In addition, the class will examine the limitations imposed on executive compensation under Sections 162(m), 280G, 409A and 4958 of the Internal Revenue Code. Familiarity with basic federal income tax principles is a must. M.T. prerequisite: 860; pre- or co-requisite: 862.

    International Taxation:

    880 - International Taxation I (2 credits) Students will learn and discuss U.S. tax laws related to international operations including U.S. entities earning foreign source income and foreign entities generating U.S. Income. Tax laws related to jurisdiction to tax, tax rules applicable to different types of legal entities; sourcing of income, and foreign tax credits will be reviewed. Tax systems of several major, foreign countries will also be discussed. This course is designed to give the student a solid base in the tax laws applicable to foreign operations and the implications for evaluating various forms in which to conduct business. LL.M. pre or co-requisite 854, 855 or 856. M.T. prerequisite: 860; pre- or co-requisites: 862 and 854, 855, or 856.

    General Electives:

    853 - State and Local Taxation (2 credits) An examination of the fundamental principles applicable to state and local taxes including a review of various types of taxes, (property, income, and sales and use taxes) used by the states and localities. We also look at federal constitutional limitations upon the states’ ability to tax, including Commerce Clause, Due Process and Equal Protection considerations. Ohio tax law is not the focus of the class and is used only as a means to address the principal national issues. M.T. pre or co-requisites: 860, 862.

    890 - Tax Exempt Organizations (2 credits) Organizational, operational and dissolution tax problems of federally tax exempt entities including Sec. 501(c) (3) charities, trade associations, clubs and voluntary employee benefit associations. M.T. prerequisite: 860; pre- or co-requisite: 862.

    896 - Real Estate Taxation (2 credits) Effect of income taxes on real estate and real estate transactions, sales and exchanges of real estate interests, various entities for the ownership and development of real estate, real estate syndications, problems of the investor and the developer, basis and basis adjustment, and choices of financing techniques such as the “sale lease back”, depreciation, amortization and obsolescence. M.T. prerequisite: 860; pre- or co-requisite: 862.

    898 - Insurance Taxation (2 credits)
    Explores the tax implications of owning life insurance policies and annuity contracts, and transactions (e.g., exchanges, distribution) involving those contract, as well as the definitional requirements imposed by the Internal Revenue Code. Course in estate taxation and/or estate planning is helpful but not mandatory. M.T. prerequisite: 860; pre- or co-requisite: 862.

    982 - Independent Research Project (1-3 credits) Significant research paper or an independent research project under the guidance of a member of the faculty leading to a publishable research paper in taxation or business. A student may not register for independent research until the student provides a written proposal, tentative outline, and tentative hypothesis accepted by a faculty member. LL.M. prerequisite: permission of Associate Dean for Graduate Law Programs. M.T. prerequisites: 860, 862, and permission of the Director of Graduate Law Programs.

    B. Business Courses:

    703 - Corporate Counsel (3 credits)
    This course will identify the multiple roles that often comprise the position of corporate counsel, thus distinguishing it from others in the legal profession. The course focuses mostly on problem- solving within the corporate counsel’s multiple roles. Students will consider the role of corporate counsel in implementing, guiding and overseeing the many issues covered in substantive law areas, including a look at ethics and professionalism.

    704 - Securities Regulation (3 credits) A survey of basic principles of federal and state securities laws with primary emphasis on federal securities law, including registration requirements for public offerings and exemptions from registration under the Securities Act of 1933, civil and criminal liabilities, registration and reporting under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, proxy regulation, tender offer regulation, insider trading, fraud and related issues under Rule 10b-5 and the role of securities.

    705 - Corporate Finance (3 credits) A survey of issues and principles relating to the acquisition, accumulation and distribution of capital resources. Examination of concepts of valuation and capital structure, legal capital, classes of securities, corporate distributions, mergers, purchases of assets or stock, recapitalizations, and applicability of Federal securities and tax laws. Considerations of economic, social and political thought as they relate to corporate finance.

    714 - Consumer Bankruptcy (3 credits)
    State collection law and bankruptcy law in cases involving consumer debtors.

    716 - Business Bankruptcy (3 credits) Deals primarily with the reorganization of financially distressed businesses under Chapter 11 of the United States Bankruptcy Code. Includes eligibility for bankruptcy relief, involuntary bankruptcy, the scope of the debtor’s bankruptcy estate; the automatic stay, control and operation of the debtor while the case is pending, avoiding powers (preferences, fraudulent conveyances, executory contracts, statutory liens), reorganization plans and post-confirmation issues. May include material on rehabilitation of individual business debtors and Family Farmers under Chapters 13 and 12 and state law receiverships.

    720 - Insurance Law (2-3 credits) An exploration of problems arising in insurance transactions: the application for and issue or rejection of a policy, the requirement for an insurable interest, valuation of a loss, multiple policies covering one loss, termination, coverage determinations, and the claims process. An emphasis on the relationship between the insurer and insured, and on the public interest in compensation for loss.

    721 - Computer Law (2 credits)
    A study of law as it pertains to computers and information technology, including issues in torts (computer fraud), contracts and commercial law (licensing and other agreements), criminal law (computer viruses, theft, and other forms of computer crime), civil procedure and evidence (use of computers during discovery and at trial), intellectual property (protection through copyright, patent, trade secret, and trademark), and international transactions.

    760 - Land Use Controls (3 credits)
    Analysis of the legal and administrative aspects of the regulation of land use and development; constitutional limitations on government regulation of land uses; problems and techniques of land use planning at the local, regional, state, and national levels. Particular attention is given to zoning, subdivision controls, public acquisition of land, housing and urban renewal, aesthetic regulations, environmental issues, and historic preservation.

    770 - Intellectual Property (3 credits) Introduction to intellectual property; background for general practice and a foundation for specialization in patents, trademarks, and copyrights; principles applicable to inventions and discoveries; secrecy as a means of protection; industrial espionage; the nature of the patent right, its acquisition, and enforcement; property and contract interests; basic requirements for trademark registration; relation of copyright to patents; trademarks.

    772 - Patent Law (3 credits)
    Conditions for a valid patent, subject matter of a patent, patent office procedures, amendment and correction of patents, patent infringement, property and contract interests in patents, and patent litigation.

    774 - Copyright Law (3 credits) A study of intellectual property rights in literary, musical, and artistic works and other "original works of authorship" under the federal law of copyright, primarily the Copyright Act of 1976, as amended.

    776 - Unfair Trade Practices (2 credits) The course consolidates diverse theories and causes of action relating to various kinds of “business torts.” It covers trade identity, unfair competition law, and the law of unfair trade practices, including discriminatory pricing, predatory practices, and regulation of false and deceptive advertising. The unifying theme is the study of private actions available for damages to business firms as alternatives to government-initiated remedies in antitrust, trade regulation, and consumer protection.

    778 - Water Resources Law and Policy (2 credits)
    This course will begin by exploring the problem of water pollution in the United States including a survey of the various water pollutants and their harmful effects on human health and the environment. It will then look at the scope of the federal government’s authority to regulate in this area as it has been interpreted by Congress of, the courts and federal agencies. The course will then turn to an in-depth examination of the federal Clean Water Act and of the various regulatory programs established under it. The focus will be on the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System, permitting program, pursuant to which many industrial facilities are regulated. The course will also consider the Dredge and Fill program and associated wetlands protection issues, as well as current efforts to increase the regulation of Anon-points sources.

    779 - Air Pollution Law and Policy (2 credits) The Clean Air Act is one of the most significant areas of environmental law; it is also one of the most complex. This course will offer students a comprehensive introduction to the Act and to the legal and policy issues that arise under the Act. It will begin with an introduction to the National Ambient Air Quality Standards and State Implementation Plans, the building blocks of the Clean Air Act. It will then examine in some detail the Act’s major regulatory programs (the Prevention of Significant Deterioration program, the Non-attainment New Source Review program, the New source Performance Standard program, and the Hazardous Air Pollutants program), as well as the Act’s enforcement and judicial review provisions. In this context, issues of federalism, market-based approaches to regulation and environmental justice will be addressed. The course will conclude with an introduction to international air pollution issues, with a focus on global warming.

    780 - Environmental Law (3 credits) Environmental issues have great importance for American society today. From climate change, to renewable energy, to air or water pollution, to "green" products or businesses, environmental issues are profoundly affecting our health, our natural environment and our economy. Environmental lawyers will play a major role in addressing these issues. They will interpret existing statutes and inform policymakers and businesses of their legal options and obligations. They will draft the legislation that shapes the environmental outcomes of the future, and the contracts that allow the new environmental technologies to emerge. They will bring the lawsuits that enforce the environmental laws on the books. This course will introduce students to the exciting world of environmental law and will prepare them to participate in it. It will provide students with a solid grounding in the major federal environmental statutes 150 The Clean Air Act, The Clean Water Act, the Superfund Law, the Endangered Species Act, and others 150 and will expose them to the most significant cases interpreting these statutes. In addition, the course will introduce students to the regulatory approaches -- such as market-based trading, technology-based 147command-and-control, 148 or planning-based strategies -- that underlie these statutes, and will thereby give them a deeper understanding of the statutes they are reading. The course will include regular exercises so that students can build their environmental law practice skills. It will close with a section on climate change law and policy, an area of increasing importance to the next generation of environmental lawyers.

    781 - Hazardous Waste Law And Policy (2 credits)
    This course will focus on two major federal environmental statutes: the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (otherwise known as the Superfund Law), and the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. CERCLA establishes liability for past disposal of hazardous substances, while RCPA regulates the present and future handling of hazardous wastes. The course will begin with an introduction to the problem of hazardous waste, including a discussion of its effects on human health and the environment. It will then examine RCRA’s Cradle-to-grave regulation of hazardous waste, from its generation, to it transportation, to its eventual disposal. Related issues of administrative process, judicial review of agency action, government enforcement and citizen suits will also be addressed. The course will next explore in detail CERCLA cleanup process, liability scheme, including such contemporary issues as the liability of successor and parent corporations, lenders, and individual corporate officers and shareholders. Finally, the course will address defenses to CERCLA liability and the settlement of CERCLA liability suits. Prerequisite: 780.

    783 - Energy Law (2 credits) An overview of the basic principles governing the production, sale, and use of coal, oil, natural gas, and electricity. Focuses on the environmental and business laws that affect producers and consumers of energy.

    810 - Labor Law (3 credits)
    Analysis of the relationship between employers, employees and unions in the private sector under the National Labor Relations Act and other federal statutes. Topics include union organizing, employer and employee bargaining relations, representation procedures, strikes and picketing, unfair labor practices, the duty of fair representation, internal union affairs, and the enforcement of collective bargaining agreements.

    811 - Employment Law (3 credits) Focuses on employment relationships between employers and employees. Examines the common law principles of employment-at-will, legal regulations on hiring and terminating employees, and conditions of employment. Specific topics include polygraph testing, nepotism, violence in the workplace, covenants not to compete, reference checks, and off-work behavior. Also covers the Family Medical Leave Act, Fair Labor Standards Act, Occupational Health and Safety Act, and various state laws.

    813 - Labor Arbitration (2 credits) The origin and development of labor arbitration. Examines state and federal labor arbitration laws, arbitration rules, and major arbitration decisions. Also includes the mechanics of the arbitration process and evidential and due process issues. This course usually concludes with a mock arbitration hearing, including the writing of a brief for arbitration and an arbitration opinion.

    817 - Employment Discrimination (3 credits) A survey of federal laws prohibiting discrimination in employment on the basis of race, national origin, sex, age, religion, and disability. Focuses on Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Americans with Disabilities Act, Age Discrimination in Employment Act, Equal Pay Act, and reconstruction era civil rights statutes.

    821 - Public Health Law (2 credits) This course will focus on efforts to use regulation, litigation and taxation to improve public health, with a particular focus on the tension between public health promotion and individual rights. It will survey the legal framework in which the government may regulate for the public health, focusing on the inherent tension between public health regulation and individual rights. The course will touch briefly on a wide range of constitutional limitations on government power (including 1st, 2nd, 4th, and 5th/14th Amendment issues) as well as the broader debate over whether government power should be used for “paternalistic” regulation. It will review litigation in the public health arena, including a discussion of whether courts are an appropriate and effective forum for addressing public health concerns. Finally, the course will touch on taxation for the public health, addressing the impact of “sin” taxes and the debate about whether the government’s taxation power should be used to influence behavior.

    822 - Health Law (3 credits)
    An analysis of the health care industry, its financing and cost problems, its mix of public and private decision-making, and the various mechanisms by which resources are or might be allocated to health care uses. Specific topics include: 1) tensions of health policy--the health care sector and its special problems; access to health care-legal entitlements and obligations; professionalism; 2) mechanisms of quality assurance- -credentialing and regulation of health care personnel; the quality of care in institutions; 3) controlling health care costs—regulatory approaches to cost containment; cost controls in government programs; privately initiated reforms.

    830 - Immigration And Naturalization (2 credits) A basic introduction to immigration law and procedure. The course traces major legislative history and immigration policy.

    902 - Dispute Resolution (2 credits) Study of the major alternatives to litigation for the resolution of disputes including negotiation, mediation, arbitration, and court-annexed procedures. Theoretical materials applied in simulated exercises. NOTE: Students enrolling in the summer intensive format version of this course are not to work during the course. Summer classes run from 8:00 AM to 12:00 PM every day from Monday through Saturday. A final exam is given the following Tuesday.

    903 - Business Negotiation (2 credits)
    This course is designed for students who have taken the Negotiation course and wish to learn about the use of negotiation in the business environment. A student who completes this course will acquire: a comprehensive and well-founded knowledge of business negotiation necessary for successful negotiation in business; the skills and abilities necessary to engage successfully in negotiation in various business and organization settings; an understanding of how the discipline of law relates to business negotiation; the ability to identify problems, create solutions, innovate, and improve current practices in business negotiations; and the ability to think creatively to reach mutually satisfactory negotiated outcomes in business. Prerequisite: 904.

    904 - Negotiation (2 credits)
    Selected materials in negotiation, the process by which lawyers resolve 90% of their clients' legal problems. Topics include selecting appropriate strategies for a particular negotiation, planning for a negotiation, and implementing strategy, selecting tactics and considering ethical issues of misrepresentation and zealous advocacy. NOTE: Students enrolling in the summer intensive format version of this course are not to work during the course. Summer classes run from 8:00 AM to 12:00 PM every day from Monday through Saturday. A final exam is given the following Tuesday.

    910 - Mediation (2 credits) This course approaches mediation from the advocate’s perspective. Students will develop a sophisticated understanding of mediation and will learn when to use mediation as a settlement process. Learning objectives will be met through in class role-plays, reading assignments, written analysis of mediation role-plays, and a final examination. NOTE: Students enrolling in the summer intensive format version of this course are not to work during the course. Classes run from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. every day from Monday through Saturday. A final exam is given the following Tuesday.

    930 - Business Planning Practicum (2 credits)
    Integrated study of corporate, financial, tax, accounting and securities aspects of: organization of a small corporation, organization of a public corporation, stock dividends, recapitalization and stock redemption in the context of a stockholder conflict, corporate liquidations, corporate mergers and acquisitions. Prerequisite: 855, 856 or 854.

    938 - Environmental Law Practicum (2 credits) This course uses problems and simulation exercises to teach students lawyering skills necessary for the practice of environmental law. It is divided into four sections -- compliance counseling, enforcement, litigation and policy -- which correspond to four of the main areas of environmental law practice. Each section commences with an introduction to the area of practice being covered. Following the introduction, students complete short problems designed to expand and deepen their understanding of the area. At the conclusion of each section, students engage in realistic that simulate the practice of environmental law. The course requires students to produce a variety of written work during the semester, such as memorandums, complains, and summary briefs. Students will be grade on these written assignments as well as on the quality of their performance in the simulations. There is no final exam or paper requirement. Prerequisites: 780.