What is Moot Court?
“Moot court” at Pitt Law is a broad term that encompasses both internal (intramural) and external (interscholastic) competitions involving not just the traditional litigation settings of trial and appellate oral argument, but also arbitration, client counseling and negotiation. All second- and third-year students have the opportunity to participate in intramural moot court competitions and to try out for any of several law school teams that compete in interscholastic competitions. In addition, first-year students are eligible to compete in the intramural Negotiations Competition in the spring semester and may serve in support capacities (e.g. bailiff or court clerk) in the other intramural competitions.
The school’s intramural competitions--the Murray S. Love Trial Moot Court Competition, the Appellate Competition, and the Negotiations Competition--are general competitions in the sense that they do not focus on a particular area of law. They are organized and supervised by the University of Pittsburgh School of Law Moot Court Board, all of whose members are current students selected on the basis of academic merit and moot court experience. Typically, the school also runs an intramural Client Counseling Competition as a means for selecting the team that will represent Pitt Law at the ABA Client Counseling Competition.
The faculty advisor to the Moot Court Board is Professor Ben Bratman.
Many of the interscholastic competitions to which the school sends teams concern a specific area of law. These include International Law, Intellectual Property Law, Health Law, Environmental Law, and others. The school also runs a mock trial program through which the school’s adjunct mock trial coaches recruit, train, and select students to serve on any of several different school teams going to interscholastic mock trial competitions.
- The Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot
- The Niagara International Moot involving US-Canada disputes
- The Jessup International Moot for International Court of Justice cases