The annual Browning Symposium will be September 24-25, 2020, at the University of Montana Alexander Blewett III School of Law in Missoula, Montana. The topic this biennium is consumer law in the 21st century, and Richard Cordray, the first director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and former Ohio attorney general, will give the keynote address.
The Montana Law Review is seeking panelists to share their expertise on cutting edge consumer issues during the symposium and to publish papers in a special symposium edition of the Montana Law Review. Potential topics include, but are not limited to, cryptocurrency, social media influencers, challenges to disclosures, student loans, credit card debt, debt collection, healthcare fraud, pharmaceutical litigation and data privacy.
Western Montana in the fall is a beautiful place to consider these important issues, and the Montana Law Review will reimburse reasonable travel expenses for selected participants. Missoula offers unmatched outdoor recreation opportunities, including world-class fishing and hiking, and is located only hours from Glacier National Park.
Interested participants should submit a short abstract for an unpublished paper, along with institutional affiliation and contact information, to symposium editor Kelsey Dayton at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Montana Law Review will select participants on a rolling basis beginning in April.
The Oral Argument is set for Friday, April 3, 2020, at 9:30 a.m., with an introduction to the oral argument beginning at 9:00 a.m. The event will be streamed online by the Montana Supreme Court.
DA 18-0268 – STATE OF MONTANA, Plaintiff and Appellee, v. CHRIS ARTHUR CHRISTENSEN, Defendant and Appellant.
Chris Christensen was a physician who operated a practice in Florence. In 2015, the State charged him with numerous felonies, alleging that he overprescribed some medications to the extent that his actions could not be considered prescribing drugs in the course of a professional practice.
After a jury trial in the Ravalli County District Court, Christensen was convicted of two counts of negligent homicide, nine counts of criminal endangerment, 388 counts of criminal distribution of dangerous drugs, and one count of criminal possession of dangerous drugs. The court sentenced him to 20 years commitment to the Department of Corrections, with 10 years suspended.
Christensen has appealed these convictions to the Montana Supreme Court. Christensen argues that the State did not present enough evidence to support the convictions. He also argues a properly licensed physician is exempt from criminal liability for distribution of dangerous drugs for the act of prescribing medication and that the criminal endangerment statute is unconstitutionally vague when applied to prescribing medication. Christensen also alleges the District Court used improper jury instructions, incorrectly allowed the State to introduce some evidence, and did not allow Christensen to elicit certain testimony in his defense.
The State disagrees with Christensen’s arguments and argues that the Montana Supreme Court should uphold the convictions.
The majority of cases before the Montana Supreme Court are decided based upon the written briefs submitted by the parties. However, the Court may decide that a case requires further discussion, in addition to what the parties have argued in their written briefs. In such cases, oral arguments are scheduled in open session before the Court. Approximately 15 cases a year are scheduled for oral argument.
Oral arguments are tightly structured and timed. The counsel for each party is allowed limited time to make an argument. The times typically range from 20 to 40 minutes and are set forth by the Court in the order setting oral argument.
While this format allows the counsel brief opportunity to further develop their arguments, it also gives the Court an opportunity to ask questions of the attorneys on points which the Court needs clarification.
Blewett School of Law students are invited to participate in the Spring Advanced Writing Requirement (AWR) Workshop from noon to 1 p.m. in room 174 on Wednesday, April 8. This workshop will cover:
• Citation refresher: Statutes, regulations, cases, law review articles, treatises
• Citing websites
• Formatting footnotes and the use of id. and supra
This workshop is designed for students writing footnoted papers such as the Advanced Writing Requirement (AWR) or a seminar paper. It will not cover the in-text citation used in briefs and memos. The workshop will cover formats in the ALWD 6th edition. Bring your ALWD Manual and citation questions. Prof. Gordon will answer questions about citing specific sources as time allows.
Hosted by the Montana Law Review, the 79th Annual James R. Browning Distinguished Lecture in Law will feature the Honorable Morgan Christen of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. It will be held on Thursday, April 9, from 5-6 p.m. in room 101 at the Blewett School of Law. A reception will follow the lecture. This lecture will be worth one CLE credit.
This presentation is being recorded by Missoula Community Access Television (MCAT). Live streaming will be available during the event via MCAT’s Local Live page at www.mcat.org/local-live.
The Browning Symposium series honors Judge James R. Browning of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Judge Browning, who was raised in Belt, Montana, graduated from the University of Montana School of Law in 1941. He was a member of the first editorial board of the Montana Law Review and ultimately served as editor-in-chief of the Law Review.
I would like to make clear that the position of the Criminal Law Group is 100% anti-Coronavirus. We neither support nor condone Coronavirus, and would like to be on record as officially disavowing Coronavirus in the strongest terms.
That being said, in the interest of being proactive, we have decided to cancel the Student/Staff basketball game this year. With the uncertainty of events beyond our control, cancellation is the safest step at this time.
The Criminal Law Group is hosting yet another Student-Staff Basketball Game. Join us on Friday, April 10 from 5:00-7:00 PM at the Dahlberg Arena.
Admission will be $5, and all proceeds go to the Montana Innocence Project.
I am incredibly sad to announce the cancellation of NALSA’s annual Indian Law Week and corresponding silent auction. I have been very lucky to have had an amazing student group and board this year. Our Indian Law Week would have been spectacular thanks to all of you but I guess it just was not in the cards. Moving forward, I hope everyone can make the best of their breaks and the rest of this school year. May everyone stay safe and healthy through this time.
Sincerely, the NALSA Board
Join students from UM’s Alexander Blewett III School of Law for events each day this week in celebration of 2020 Indian Law Week April 13-17. The theme of the week is “Together We Rise: Tribal Movements for Protecting the Sacred and Promoting Justice” and each day focuses on a different topic. All events free and open to the public unless otherwise indicated.
Criminal Law Group is excited to invite anyone interested to join Booking, a new book club on campus. Discussion at this meeting will center around chapters 14-16 of Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson. This meeting will take place Thursday, April 16, from 12-1 p.m. in the Blewett School of Law by the fireplace across from the Sidebar cafe.
We have made the difficult decision to postpone this year’s 4th Annual IP Day in Montana until the fall. Due to the extraordinary circumstances surrounding COVID-19, including the CDC’s recommendation to cancel all events with more than 50 people, Governor Bullock’s declaration of a state of emergency in Montana, and the temporary closing of the Law School building and transition of all university and law school classes to remote online learning for the rest of the semester, we are unable to proceed with IP Day this academic year.
For the fourth year, the Blewett School of Law will partner with the IPL Section of the Montana Bar to present IP Day in Montana on April 17, 2020, at the University of Montana Alexander Blewett III School of Law in Missoula, Montana. This year’s program focuses on intellectual property (IP) and cultural appropriation.
As in past years, IP Day in Montana will highlight the work of current law students on Thursday, April 16. For IP Day in Montana 2020, the Blewett Law School and IPL Section of the Montana Bar are partnering with the Native American Law Student Association (NALSA) to focus on a hot topic: Intellectual Property (IP) and cultural appropriation.
For participants receiving Continuing Legal Education (CLE) credit, registration will include a fee of $50. For all other participants, this event is free and open to the public.