Civ Pro I: Assignments (Fall 2015)


Spring assignments

Assignments for Spring 2016 can be found here.

This page is updated regularly

See below for assignments and updates. Generally speaking, we will pick up where we left off in the previous class. As a standing practice, be sure to re-review any materials we have not completed from the previous class. Also be sure to read any new materials assigned for that day.

Read carefully and critically. 

Read the materials carefully and critically. The syllabus contains basic information to help you in doing your assignments, such as:

Be sure to read the syllabus and use it as a guide.


Here’s a guide to abbreviations used in the assignments below:

  • “CB” means the Glannon casebook (second edition).
  • “RS” means the Glannon rules supplement (2015 edition).
  • “FRCP” or “Fed. R. Civ. P.” refers to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, which can be found in the Glannon rules supplement.
  • “U.S.C.” refers to the United States Code, which contains federal statutes enacted by the U.S. Congress, which can be found in the Glannon rules supplement.
  • “U.S. Const’n” refers to the U.S. Constitution, which can also be found in the Glannon rules supplement.
  • “Screencast” refers to videos on Professor Nathenson’s YouTube site

Familiarize yourself with the types of materials in the Civ Pro Study Resources. You’ll use them regularly in and out of class.

WEEK 1 – AUG. 17 & 19

MONDAY, AUG. 17: Intro to Civ Pro

WEDNESDAY, AUG. 19: SMJ – Diversity jurisdiction basics; citizenship of individuals

  • RS, U.S. Const’n, Art. III, sec. 1 and 2
  • RS, 28 U.S.C. § 1332(a), (e)
  • CB, pp. 39-57
  • To help you prepare for class recitation, read Tips for Reciting in Class
  • Screencast: Diversity basics: Citizen of a State, available on and on YouTube.
  • Prepare answers to questions #1-4 of the Diversity Jurisdiction problem set. Answers with explanations will be posted after we complete our studies of diversity jurisdiction.

WEEK 2 – AUG. 24 & 26

MONDAY, AUG. 24: SMJ – Diversity jurisdiction; citizenship of corporations & other entities

WEDNESDAY, AUG. 26:  SMJ – Diversity jurisdiction; amount in controversy

WEEK 3 – AUG. 31 & SEPT. 2

MONDAY, AUG. 31: SMJ – Federal question: the well-pleaded complaint

WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 2: SMJ – Federal question: the state-law claim with the federal ingredient

WEEK 4 – SEPT. 7 & 9


  • Labor Day, no classes today.
  • Please note: I will not have Tuesday office hours. Instead, office hours this week will be:
    • Wednesday 5:30-7:30PM
    • Thursday 4:00-6:00PM
    • Friday, around 1PM to 4PM

WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 9: SMJ – Removal jurisdiction

  • FYI: explanations to the federal-question problems from last week are now online.
  • We will start on Wednesday by finishing our discussion of federal-question jurisdiction, and will then move into the new materials assigned for today. In addition to the statutes and readings, be ready to discuss the problem set.
  • RS: 28 U.S.C. §§ 1441(a)-(c), (f), 1446(a)-(d), 1447, 1454
  • Handout on Reading Statutes & Rules. We will use it in marking up the removal statutes.
  • CB 125-142
  • Prepare answers to the Removal jurisdiction problem set.

WEEK 5 – SEPT. 14 & 16

MONDAY, SEPT. 14: Removal jurisdiction; Personal jurisdiction (intro & Pennoyer)

  • We will finish our discussion of removal. As noted in class, I expect that each of you have carefully marked up your statute books and have answers prepared to the problem set. We will then move into personal jurisdiction, one of the most important topics of the year. Pennoyer is one of the most difficult cases of the first-year curriculum, and will need multiple and careful reads. I will assume that you have read all the assigned materials very carefully.
  • Required:
    • RS: U.S. Const. am. XIV, section 1
    • CB: 145-62
    • Study questions/topics for Pennoyer. As part of your briefing, be prepared to discuss your answers to these questions. If you feel you cannot answer any of them, then be prepared to explain what you found confusing and why. Be ready to point to specific text that underlies your confusion. This will be a standing expectation for all of the cases we will read on this topic.
  • Recommended:
    • For the story behind Pennoyer, read Introduction, Part I, and Part II, from Wendy C. Perdue, Sin, Scandal, and Substantive Due Process: Personal Jurisdiction and Pennoyer Reconsidered, 62 Wash. L. Rev. 479 (1987) (Hein on campus | Hein via proxyWestLaw | Lexis) Note: for the download links to work you must be logged into WestLaw, Lexis, or Hein. There are two Hein links. The first is for persons on campus; the second is a proxy link for STU students off campus. I prefer to use Hein because it provides you with a PDF of the original page with proper formatting and footnotes. It’s also a lot more readable.
    • For the historical value, you might be interested to see the notice of Mitchell’s suit against Neff published in the Pacific Christian Advocate.

WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 16: Personal jurisdiction

WEEK 6 – SEPT. 21 & 22

MONDAY, SEPT. 21: Personal jurisdiction – Refining the standard

WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 22: Personal jurisdiction – Refining the standard

WEEK 7 – SEPT. 28 & 30

MONDAY, SEPT. 28: Personal jurisdiction – Refining the standard

  • We will continue discussion of materials from the prior class.
  • No new reading, but make sure you are prepared to discuss the materials in CB: 210-32 and that you are prepared to discuss the Asahi study questions.

WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 30: Personal jurisdiction – General Jurisdiction

WEEK 8 – OCT. 5 & 7

MONDAY, OCT. 5: Personal jurisdiction – In rem & Quasi-in-rem jurisdiction

WEDNESDAY, OCT. 7: Personal jurisdiction – Transient Presence, Consent & Waiver


I will be attending part of your ALI sessions this week. Your ALIs Ashley and Marlene will have a skills activity for you. In addition, I will speak a bit about essay exams in this course.

In preparation, you should read the following two pages from the Civ Pro resources:

Also, as noted in last week’s class, I’ve posted the clarified text to the ALI removal question.

WEEK 9 – OCT. 12 & 14

MONDAY, OCT. 12: Personal jurisdiction – State & Federal Long-Arms

WEDNESDAY, OCT. 14: Personal jurisdiction – PJ Big Picture Day

  • Class will start at the normal time, but will be extended.
  • What you must do to properly prepare:
    1. First, do the PJ problem set. Do all the problems without viewing the explanations.
    2. Second, only after you’ve done the problems, see the explanations here. If you wish, you may also watch a video with discussion of the problem set here.
  • What we’ll do as a group:
    1. The “PJ Big Picture Day” review session.
    2. For those of you with laptops, you can pull up the Coggle during the review session.
  • Important: I am trusting you to do the problem set before you view the answers. You will get much more from the questions if you do them yourself first. Learning what you don’t know is as important as learning what you do know. If you do not do as I suggest above, then you are depriving yourself of an important learning opportunity.

WEEK 10 – OCT. 19 & 21

MONDAY, OCT. 19: Notice

WEDNESDAY, OCT. 21: Introduction to venue

  • 28 U.S.C. §§ 1390, 1391(a), (b), (c), and (d) (in statutes book). Read the statutes carefully: we will discuss them in class.
  • CB pp. 359-76
  • On Monday, I will give you a handout that provides an updated version of note 1 on pp. 366-67. So use the handout and ignore the text in the casebook.
  • Basic venue study questions, be prepared to discuss

WEEK 11 – OCT. 26 & 28

MONDAY, OCT. 26: In-class practice exam

  • In-class practice exam.
  • Use your midterm AGN for the exam. Obtain it from the registrar’s office.
  • Bring # 2 pencils for scantrons.
  • You may use your statute books.
  • No laptops will be permitted for this exam. You will provide written answers in bluebooks (in contrast, laptops with Examsoft with be permitted for the final examination).

WEDNESDAY, OCT. 28: Transfer & dismissal

WEEK 12 – NOV. 2 & 4

MONDAY, NOV. 2: Forum non conveniens

  • Bring food for No Call Day.
    • The St. Thomas More Society is running a food drive. They are looking for  nonperishable food items during your classes next week. There will be food collection bags inside each classroom. Examples would be soup, canned vegetables, dried beans and noodles, etc.
    • For today’s class, if 100% of the class brings at least one (1) item each, then I will not call on anyone today. Please put your food in front of you at the beginning of class.
  • Midterm for those who missed the practice exam. You can find a full copy of the practice midterm here under the heading Practice Examinations. If you were absent for the practice exam, then print out the exam, write your multiple-choice answers on the exam, and write your essay answer by hand (no typed essays will be accepted). Make sure to do the version that applies to your section. Limit yourself to the 75 minutes total allotted. Bring me your exam with essay to Monday’s class. Do not discuss the exam with anybody before taking it.
  • Readings:
  • Problem set: there is a venue/transfer/FNC problem set available here
  • Note: in class, I may make reference to a chart I put together this morning regarding Piper and choice-of-law issues. You can find it here.

WEDNESDAY, NOV. 4: Introduction to pleading

  • CB pp. 413-40
  • FRCP 7
  • FRCP 8(a), 8(d), 8(e)
  • FRCP 10
  • FRCP 12(b)(6)

WEEK 13 – NOV. 9 & 11

MONDAY, NOV. 9: Heightened & plausibility pleading

WEDNESDAY, NOV. 11: Heightened & plausibility pleading (cont’d)

  • We will continue Monday’s assignment

WEEK 14 – NOV. 16 & 18

MONDAY, NOV. 16: Defendant’s options (default, pre-answer motion, answer)

WEDNESDAY, NOV. 18: Defendant’s options (answer)

WEEK 15 – NOV. 23

MONDAY, NOV. 23: Last Fall class

  • Review session
  • Class will be extended

Last updated Nov. 8, 2015, moved to archive page Jan. 1, 2016