You will need to write a 10-14 page paper on a Supreme Court case using the following guidelines.

  1. Choose a case from the list below that interests you. You may want to do some brief research on a few of the topics before committing to one.
  2. Your paper should expand on the case brief elements we have been discussing this semester. Your paper should cover the following:
    What are the facts of the case? How did it end up at the Supreme Court?
    What are the arguments on each side? What authority does each side cite to support their argument?
    What do other cases say about this? (You may want to discuss this prior to discussing each sides’ arguments.)
    What is the Court’s analysis?
    What is the Court’s conclusion… who wins, and why?
    What do you think? Include your own thoughts, such as: What will the implications of this decision be on businesses in the future? …On citizens? Do you agree with the outcome? Do you think the political make up of the Court influenced this outcome? Does the evolution of the law on this topic support that notion? Do you think this decision will be overruled in the future, and if so, why? These are just a number of prompts for you to think about; you can include other thoughts you might have on the subject. This section should be at least 2 pages, and closer to 4.
  3. You will be graded on the accuracy of the information you provide, the clarity of your writing, your grammar, and whether your paper demonstrates thoughtfulness, effort, and understanding of the issues. Sloppy papers written a day or two, or even a week, before the due date will likely earn a low grade. Papers that are plagiarized will receive zero credit and will be referred to the Dean.
  4. To avoid plagiarism, you should cite your work appropriately. Legal writing follows its own citation style, which is esoteric and beyond the expectations of this course. However, I do expect you to credit ideas to the original authors using the type of citation format you are most comfortable with. When you are providing the background information and summary of arguments from the case, you do not need to cite the case after each sentence, but if you directly quote language from the case, you should make sure that it is in quotation marks to indicate as such.
  5. The last page of your document should be a references sheet, which does not count toward the overall page count of your paper. Your references sheet should consist mostly of court cases, and not secondary sources such as news articles or television clips.
  6. All work MUST BE SUBMITTED IN .PDF, .DOC, OR .DOCX FORMAT.  Any other formats, such as .pages, will not be accepted after the deadline. If you accidentally submit an early draft, submit your final draft before the deadline. I will only look at the last submission.