Washington College of Law


We're honored to have an article from Volume 63 cited in the Supreme Court's decision, Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. Inclusive Communities Project, Inc., holding that disparate-impact claims may be brought under the Fair Housing Act.

Congratulations to the Volume 65 Junior Staff!

Federal Circuit Issue

Federal Circuit Issue

The American University Law Review is the only law review in the country to publish an issue exclusively dedicated to the Federal Circuit.  Each year, practitioners and academics provide a synopsis of the Federal Circuit's caseload from the previous year in five major areas of the court's jurisdiction:  patent law, trademark law, government contracts, international trade, and veterans' benefits.  Click here to learn more.

The 2015 Federal Circuit Symposium, "TRENDING IP TOPICS IN 2015:  A Table Talk with Chief Judge Sharon Prost (WCL '79) and Judge Arthur J. Gajarsa," will be held on February 12, 2015 at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit from 4:00 PM to 5:30 PM.  

Symposium Issue

Symposium Issue

This year's Annual Symposium is titled "Taxing Remote Sales in the Digital Age."  The keynote speaker will be Heidi Heitkamp, United States Senator for North Dakota.  It will be held from 8:30 AM to 2:00 PM on Friday, November 13, 2015, at the law offices of Jones Day.  Click here for more information.

Current Issue, Volume 65.2

Reconceptualizing Managerial Judges

By Steven Baicker-McKee │ 65 Am. U. L. Rev. 353 (2015)


What is the ideal role for a judge in today’s litigation environment? Should it be passive—waiting in her chambers for the lawyers to bring motions raising issues and disputes during the pretrial process, then presiding over trial? Or should it be proactive—initiating conferences periodically during the pretrial process to steer the case and prevent disputes, then presiding over trial?

Health Justice: A Framework (and Call to Action) for the Elimination of Health Inequity and Social Injustice

By Emily A. Benfer │ 65 Am. U. L. Rev. 275 (2015)


Every aspect of society is dependent upon the health of its members.  Health is essential to an individual’s well-being, quality of life, and ability to participate in society.  Yet the healthcare industry, even at its optimal level of functioning, cannot improve the health of the population without addressing the root causes of poor health.  The health of approximately 46.7 million individuals, most of whom are low-income and racial minorities, is threatened by economic, societal, cultural, environmental, and social conditions.  Poor health in any population group affects everyone, leading to higher crime rates, negative economic impacts, decreased residential home values, increased healthcare costs, and other devastating consequences.  Despite this fact, efforts to improve health among low-income and minority communities are impeded by inequitable social structures, stereotypes, legal systems, and regulatory schemes that are not designed to take into account the social determinants of health in decision making models and legal interpretation.  As a result, a large segment of the population is continually denied the opportunity to live long, productive lives and to exercise their rights under democratic principles.  Health, equity, and justice make up the keystone of a functional, thriving society.  These principles are unsatisfied when they do not apply equally to all members of society. 

Property Rebels: Reclaiming Abandoned, Bank-Owned Homes for Community Uses

By Valerie Schneider │ 65 Am. U. L. Rev. 399 (2015)


In urban cores, abandoned, bank-owned, foreclosed homes attract crime, drain value from neighboring properties, and deplete the resources of municipalities, creating economic black holes in communities.  Groups of activists affiliated with the Occupy Our Homes movement have been working to undo the harm caused by these abandoned homes by placing otherwise homeless individuals in neglected bank-owned properties.

This Article argues that modifications to existing property law norms such as adverse possession can provide a legal framework through which abandoned homes might be put to community use, not necessarily to end homelessness—which has roots, causes, and consequences beyond the scope of this Article—but instead to combat the harms blocks of abandoned, bank-owned homes cause communities and to re-engineer the relationships between banks and the communities in which such banks own property.

Click here to view this Article

COMMENT: The Halfway Point Between Barbary Coast and Shangri-La: Extraterritoriality and the Viability of the Economic Reality Method Post-Parkcentral Global Hub Ltd. v. Porsche Automobile Holdings SE

By Kaitlin A. Bruno │ 65 Am. U. L. Rev. 435 (2015)

In the increasingly globalized world, courts have struggled with how to best determine whether a security transaction is sufficiently domestic for § 10(b) of the Securities and Exchange Act of 1934 to apply.  The leader in securities regulation jurisprudence, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, held in Parkcentral Global Hub Ltd. v. Porsche Automobile Holdings SE that, although satisfying the location-based transactional test the Supreme Court established in Morrison v. National Australia Bank is required, it is not, on its own, dispositive of § 10(b) liability.

COMMENT: The Road to Prison is Paved with Bad Evaluations: The Case for Functional Behavioral Assessments and Behavior Intervention Plans

By Stephanie M. Poucher │ 65 Am. U. L. Rev.  471 (2015)

In 1997, Congress amended the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (“IDEA”) to include provisions meant to assist school districts in educating students with behavioral needs.  These amendments required schools to use functional behavioral assessments (“FBA”) and behavior intervention plans (“BIP”) under certain circumstances. Congress did not, however, include a definition of or substantive requirements for either system of behavior management. As a result, although BIPs and FBAs are now federally mandated requirements, and it is clear that disregarding behavioral issues is a denial of a free appropriate public education (“FAPE”), the IDEA’s adjudicative standard, there is no clear consensus as to whether a student with behavioral needs must have an FBA or a BIP or what either must include.  The IDEA’s lack of guidance has resulted in inconsistent and often contradictory court rulings, and the lack of specific definitions and procedures has allowed schools to develop purportedly legal but substantively deficient behavior evaluations and intervention plans for special needs students.



Thank you for visiting the American University Law Review website!  This site provides a central and convenient location to browse our volumes, preview forthcoming scholarship, and learn more about our publication.  Please send any questions or comments to lawrev@wcl.american.edu.

Founded in 1952, the Law Review is the oldest and largest student-run publication at the Washington College of Law and publishes six issues each year.  The Law Review is consistently ranked among the top fifty law journals in the nation and is the most-cited journal at WCL, according to the Washington and Lee University Law Library.

Rather than focus on a particular area of law, the Law Review publishes articles, essays, and student notes and comments on a broad range of issues.  Recent topics have included the Second Amendment right to bear arms; the Freedom of Information Act; electronic copyright infringement; attorney-client privilege; immigration law; international trade law; and many other timely legal issues.

The Law Review receives approximately 2,500 submissions annually and publishes articles from professors, judges, practicing lawyers, and renowned legal thinkers.  The Law Review has published articles or commentary by Supreme Court Chief Justices Warren Burger, William Rehnquist, and Earl Warren, as well as Associate Justices Hugo Black, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and Arthur Goldberg.

Click here to learn more.

Forthcoming, Vol. 65.3

Jon D. Bressler:  Impermissive Counterclaims:  Why Nonresident Plaintiffs Can Contest Personal Jurisdiction in Unrelated Countersuits

David Manno:  How Dramatic Shifts in Perceptions of Parenting Have Exposed Families, Free-Range or Otherwise, to State Intervention:  A Common Law Tort Approach to Redefining Child Neglect 

Paula Renkiewicz:  Sweat Makes the Green Grass Grow:  The Dangerous Future of Qatar's Migrant Workers in the Run up to the 2022 FIFA World Cup Under the Kafala System and Recommendations for Effective Reform

John R. Mills, Anna M. Dorn, and Amelia Courtney Hritz:  Juvenile Life Without Parole in Law and Practice:  The End of Superpredator Era Sentencing

Lee Levine and Stephen Wermiel:  The Court and the Cannonball:  An Inside Look

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