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National Moot Court Team Advances

Nine teams competed in the regional competition, held at Roger Williams University in Rhode Island.


BC Law’s National Moot Court Team has advanced from the New England Regional Rounds of the 69th Annual National Moot Court Competition, sponsored by the American College of Trial Lawyers and the Bar of the City of New York. The team, composed of third-year students Mitchell Clough, Amber Groves, and Daniel Johnson, will compete in the National Championship, to be held in New York City in January 2019.

“Each team member performed superbly,” said Thomas Carey, the team’s coach, in a recent statement. “They are a credit to the school and exemplify our motto, ‘Ever to Excel.’ Mitch, Amber, and Dan are joining the likes of Joan Lukey ’74, John Kerry ’76, and so many others who have been outstanding representatives of BC Law on the national stage of this prestigious competition.”

Nine law school teams competed in the regionals, held at Roger Williams University in Rhode Island: Boston College Law, Boston University Law, Quinnipiac University Law, Roger Williams University Law; Suffolk University Law; Syracuse University Law; UMass Dartmouth Law; Vermont Law; and Western New England College of Law.

According to Carey, this year’s problem involved (1) whether state statutes requiring registration and appointment of an agent for receiving service of process before a corporation could do business within a state, and treating such registration and appointment as consent to the exercise of general personal jurisdiction over the corporation, violate the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, and (2) whether the manufacturer of a wholly autonomous automobile should be strictly liable under the consumer expectation test, the risk/utility test, or some amalgam of the two, for serious personal injuries suffered by a purchaser when the car drove into a sinkhole on the roadway.

Clough (jurisdiction argument for manufacturer), Groves (product liability arguments for both customer and manufacturer), and Johnson (jurisdiction argument for customer) were presented with the Lewis Powell Medals, named after the former Supreme Court Justice who had been a leader of the American Bar before his appointment to the Court. These awards are made to the members of the two teams that reach the Regional Finals and advance to the National Championship Rounds in New York City. They will be one of 28 teams to advance through regional rounds among some 300 teams from 14 regions across the United States.

“I want to thank everyone who helped in this success, especially those who took the time to bench the team in moot arguments to help prepare them for the competition,” Carey said. “The students and I deeply appreciate all the support and encouragement they have received from the law school community.”