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Corporate & Commercial Law

Students sometimes mistakenly assume that corporate and commercial law courses are relevant only for "big business" entities and transactions, and that only lawyers in large firms deal with them.

However, the practice of most lawyers involves working with some forms of business organizations, and in its broader sense commercial law includes consumer interests and transactions.

Some lawyers engaged in a corporate law practice focus on business transactions and corporate regulation, but others emphasize corporate and securities litigation. Even if you do not plan to specialize in this area, you should consider taking one or more of the courses since corporations are so pervasive and corporate law questions are important in all areas of legal practice.

The basic course in Corporations provides an introduction to the law of business organizations and is a prerequisite for many other corporate and securities law courses. Other courses in the area prepare you for a practice that focuses on corporate organization, governance, and financing. Courses in corporate finance and securities regulation deal with issues basic to corporate practice and provide a foundation for even more specialized practice. You may also select from courses introducing important practice topics such as Antitrust, Corporate Transactions, or Corporate Governance.

Your first-year Contracts course introduces the basic legal principles of contract law, including Article 2 of the Uniform Commercial Code. It is a basis for upper level courses covering specialized types of contracts and specialized areas of commercial and consumer law, including payment obligations, sales contracts, and personal property secured transactions. Commercial law also contains a focus on debtors’ rights and creditors’ remedies, including bankruptcy. Anyone who expects to represent business clients should take a number of these courses to prepare for a transactional practice in banking law, commercial transactions, or bankruptcy, as well as for a civil litigation practice in one of these areas. A foundation in the area is also important for a lawyer in a small general practice or with a focus on consumer interests.


Basic courses are those which introduce fundamental concepts and provide the necessary background to pursue advanced courses in the area. Additional courses expand upon basic concepts and offer advanced study in the subject area. Related courses provide additional background or demonstrate how the subject area relates to the core concepts of another subject area.

Basic Courses Units
California Construction Law3
Commercial Transactions3
Federal Income Taxation3
Secured Transactions3
Additional Courses Units
Accounting for Lawyers3
Corporate Governance3
Corporate Taxation3
International Business Transactions3
International Economic Relations3
Partnership Taxation3
Regulation of Financial Institutions2
Securities Regulation3
Tax LLM: Partnership Taxation3
Related Courses Units
Administrative Law3
Antitrust Law and Intellectual Property Rights2
Employee Benefits (ERISA)3
Employment Law3
Environmental Law3
Insurance Law3
Intellectual Property Survey3
Labor Law3
Maritime Law3
Patent Law3
Patent Licensing2 or 3
Trademark Law3