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Law Schools N-S

New York University School of Law, David Wolfson

Animal Law. This course will examine the legal classification of non-human animals, the laws that govern their treatment, as well as topics that fall within the general headings “animal law” and “animal rights.” Such topics include: the historical and philosophical treatment of animals, and how such treatment has impacted the ways in which judges, administrators, politicians, lawyers, law students, legal scholars and lay people see and speak about animals; how humans interact with, and use, animals; current animal protection laws; recent political campaigns to reform animal protection laws; “standing” and the problems of litigating on behalf of animals; the classification of animals as “property” and whether such classification is appropriate or important; and whether current legal protections for animals are sufficient, or, in the alternative, whether new legal strategies, such as “legal personhood” or fundamental “legal rights” for animals, should be pursued. From time to time there will be guest speakers.

New York University School of Law,  David Wolfson

Animal Law Seminar. This course will examine the legal classification of non-human animals, the laws that govern their treatment, as well as topics that fall within the general headings “animal law” and “animal rights.” Such topics include: the historical and philosophical treatment of animals, and how such treatment has impacted the ways in which judges, administrators, politicians, lawyers, law students, legal scholars and lay people see and speak about animals; how humans interact with, and use, animals; current animal protection laws; recent political campaigns to reform animal protection laws; “standing” and the problems of litigating on behalf of animals; the classification of animals as “property” and whether such classification is appropriate or important; and whether current legal protections for animals are sufficient, or, in the alternative, whether new legal strategies, such as “legal personhood” or fundamental “legal rights” for animals, should be pursued. From time to time there will be guest speakers.

New York University School of Law,  David Wolfson

Animal Rights Seminar. This course will examine the legal classification of non-human animals, the laws that govern their treatment, as well as topics that fall within the general headings “animal law” and “animal rights.” Such topics include: the historical and philosophical treatment of animals, and how such treatment has impacted the ways in which judges, administrators, politicians, lawyers, law students, legal scholars and lay people see and speak about animals; how humans interact with, and use, animals; current animal protection laws; recent political campaigns to reform animal protection laws; “standing” and the problems of litigating on behalf of animals; the classification of animals as “property” and whether such classification is appropriate or important; and whether current legal protections for animals are sufficient, or, in the alternative, whether new legal strategies, such as “legal personhood” or fundamental “legal rights” for animals, should be pursued. From time to time there will be guest speakers.

Northeastern University School of Law, Jonathan Rankin

Animal Law

Nova Southeastern University Law Center, Phyllis Coleman

Animal Law. Course examining the law of non-human animals. Topics include litigation concerning companion pets and therapy pets; veterinary malpractice; trusts for non-human beneficiaries; and animal cruelty and neglect statutes. Ethics, policy, and social justice play an important role in class discussions about competing values and viewpoints. As the field develops, the course will also address issues such as the classification of animal rights terrorists as domestic terrorists under the Patriot Act and judicial recognition of higher primates as legal persons.

Pace University School of Law, David Cassuto

Animal Law. Explores the animal law movement from its inception to its current status. Examines the development, scope and current application of anti-cruelty laws governing laboratory animals, trapping, animal fighting, animals used in entertainment, animals used for religious or education purposes, and humane slaughter. The course studies law reform, resources, expanding the scope of animal law, and the connection between environmental issues and animal issues at both the local and global levels. Since 1996, Professor Porto has organized an annual “Animals and the Law” conference.

Penn State University Dickinson School of Law, Patti Bednarik

Animal Law. In this course we will address how legal systems and administrative agencies make decisions that affect nonhuman animals. The course will focus on the origins, background, and evolution of animal law and address specific substantive areas involving animals such as the concept of animals as property; contract and tort issues related to animals, animal protection laws; constitutional law issues; animal exploitation and the government regulation of animals.

Rutgers Law School, Gary L. Francione

Human Rights and Animal Rights. We will first examine the concept of a right and the differences between moral theories based on rights and those based on consequences, virtue, or other considerations. As part of this portion of the course, we will consider the relationship between law and morality. We will then explore the ways in which race, sex, sexual orientation, and species limit membership in the moral and legal community. We will examine rights issues raised in various contexts involving humans and nonhumans, including abortion, the status of women in a patriarchal society, gay rights, affirmative action, capital punishment, vegetarianism, the status of nonhumans as property, and the use of animals in biomedical experiments.

Rutgers Law School,  Gary L. Francione

Seminar on Animal Rights. Focuses on four areas. First, the course surveys philosophical and historical materials concerning the status of nonhuman animals. Second, it considers the legal status of animals as property. Third, the differences between the concepts of “animal rights” and “animal welfare” are addressed. Fourth, the relationship between the animal rights movement and other social justice movements is discussed. Students are required to do a paper on a topic of their choice.

Rutgers Law School, Ellen Goodman

Seminar on Animal Law. Relevant legal doctrine includes constitutional law (e.g., standing), environmental law (e.g., Endangered Species Act), food and drug law (e.g., the regulation of organic animal products), state statutory law (e.g., anti-cruelty statutes), and state common law (e.g., property rights in animals). The course will begin with philosophical, literary, and scientific texts dealing with the relationship between animals and humans. We will explore rights based, utilitarian, religious, and other traditions that inform how we might approach the question of animal rights and welfare in relation to human interests. Moving from first principles to the law, we shall focus on federal practice, including standing doctrine, the administrative law related to farmed animals and laboratory animals, the relationship between animal and environmental law, and the economics of animal protection. The course will emphasize how legal reasoning takes shape in emerging fields, the interplay between law and social movements, and the role of information as a regulatory tool. Readings will include works by Cass Sunstein, Martha Nussbaum and Richard Epstein.

Santa Clara University School of Law, Corey Evans, Geneva Page

Animal Law. Surveys the law’s treatment of animals by looking at the development of federal and state policies towards wild, domestic, and companion animals. Specific topics may include the history of animal law, the concept of animals as property, the application of tort and remedies law to injuries to pets, protection of animals by cruelty and other laws, the role and regulation of animals as food and the regulation of animals used for research. The course will incorporate legal concepts from other fields; encourage critical thought and new approaches to doctrines developed in these other fields, and address a broadened integration of the realities of animals and society with the particularities of the law.

Seattle University School of Law, Adam Karp

Animal Law. This course will involve a number of topics under the general heading of Animal Law and Animal Rights. Questions of property, torts, will and trusts, contracts, administrative and constitutional law will be explored as these areas relate to animals.

Southern New England School of Law, Robert H. Fennessy

Animal Rights Law. This course will address the issue of whether certain legal “rights” should be bestowed to animals, by exposing students to a wide range of animal welfare and state legislation issues affecting the legal protection of both domestic and wild animals. The course will also study some existing legal issues relating to animals, such as injuries caused to and by animals, the loss of animal companionship, animal cruelty, and veterinary malpractice.

Southwestern Law School, Sande Buhai

Animal Law. This course addresses the extent to which our legal system and cultural values affect the ways in which legislators, judges, politicians, administrators, advocates, scholars, and lay people treat and speak about animals other than humans. The evolution, interpretation, and enforcement of animal-related laws will be treated, as well as whether and how such laws should be changed, and if so, what the effects might be. Among the topics to be covered are the legal classification of animals as property; loss of companionship and emotional distress; veterinary malpractice; anti-curelty laws; standing to sue on behalf of animals; and regulation of the commercial use of animals. Reference may be made to wildlife protection and endangered species, but these issues are properly the focus of other courses, such as National Resources or Environment Law.

St. Thomas University School of Law, Steven M. Wise

Animal Law. This course explores the current legal protections, standing, sources and characteristics of fundamental animal “rights”. The course covers both statutory and common law that seeks to protect animals. We consider why humans are entitled to pursue rights for animals but why non-human, sentient species are generally denied any cause of action. We consider whether modifications of the existing legal framework would be feasible to aid in the protection of wildlife and domesticated animals.

Stanford Law School, Bruce Wagman

Animal Law. This course presents a survey of the historical and current status of this rapidly developing specialty. In brief, animal law encompasses all areas of the law in which the nature – legal, social or biological – of nonhuman animals is an important factor. This is not an animal rights course, although certainly the question of what rights animals should or do have is raised as a natural consequence of studying the materials. Rather, it is an objective and logical specialization of a challenging area – one with a growing number of cases and laws, increasing public and practical interest, and significantly different historical, legal and philosophical foundations than most other courses.

Stetson University College of Law, Sally Waters

Animal Law Seminar. This course examines materials relevant to understanding the legal status of animals. It will cover a number of topics related to animal law, including various issues that arise under the laws of property, contracts, and torts. It will also incorporate criminal and consitutional law issues and will consider the evolution of the law’s understanding and treatment of animals by examining selected federal and state laws.

Suffolk University Law School, Paul Waldau

Animal Law. This course examines (1) a series of topics that come under the general headings “animal law” and “animal rights”, and more specifically, (2) the extent to which legal systems, specific cases, legislation, and background cultural values have affected, and will continue to affect, the ways in which judges, administrators, politicians, lawyers, law students, legal scholars, and lay people see and speak about animals other than humans. The purpose of the course is not only to learn substantive law in relevant areas (such as property, tort, contract, wills and trusts, constitutional law, and criminal law) but also to understand the background of claims made explicitly or implicitly in laws and decisions dealing with nonhuman animals. We will thus regularly ask questions such as (1) How well have decision-makers in law seen and/or understood other animals? (2) In what ways do case decisions and legislation reflect values from outside of law regarding nonhuman animals (in other words, what extra-legal sources are relevant to decisions in cases and the framing and interpretation of legislation and administrative regulations)? (3) What are the future prospects for using various parts of the legal system to address the status of nonhuman animals?