2021 Frequently Asked Competition Questions

 

Question: We are currently preparing our brief for the competition.  We have been unable to find guidance on case law in the rules for the competition.  Are we limited to the case law found in the lower court opinion?  If not, is there a certain jurisdiction that we should focus on (recognizing that SCOTUS is not bound by lower court rulings)?

Answer: You are not limited by the case law in the opinion. There are no restrictions on legal authorities you may use in making your arguments. The premise is that this is a case of first impression in the fictional court of Capitania, thus you would need to look outside the jurisdiction to make your arguments. The rules indicate the general categories of how briefs are judged: “Knowledge of the law and persuasiveness will be the primary standards in grading, but form, style, and appearance will also be considered.”