Professor Rothstein is well known for his work in evidence; torts; civil and criminal lawsuits; governmental, legal, and judicial ethics; and the judicial process from the Supreme Court on down, including constitutional aspects. His background is that of a practicing trial lawyer handling tort, criminal, and commercial litigation. He is author of the books Evidence: Cases, Materials and Problems; Evidence in a Nutshell; Federal Rules of Evidence; Federal Testimonial Privileges and several other books and approximately 100 articles. His numerous professional activities include positions as chair of the American Bar Association Rules of Evidence and Criminal Procedure Committee, Board member and Education Chairman of the Federal Bar Association, chair of the Association of American Law Schools Evidence Section, and consultant to the U.S Congress, the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws, and the National Academy of Sciences. In addition, he has been a regular contributing editor to the Legal Times, the New York Law Journal, and the Criminal Law Bulletin and on the Publication Advisory Boards of Matthew Bender Co., Lexis-Nexis, and several other publishers. Professor Rothstein was a Fulbright Scholar at Oxford University in England prior to entering the profession.
Professor Rothstein was on the American team helping draft the constitutions of approximately a dozen countries emerging from the former Soviet Union, including Russia. He also was a pioneer in government compensation for victims of crime, helping draft some of the earliest American legislation and playing an instrumental role in the formation of the American and International Crime Victims Compensation Associations, in which he was an officer. He has been a principal consultant to both houses of Congress on revision of the massive U.S. Criminal Code and on the Federal Rules of Evidence; and has advised states, such as Texas, and D.C., on the revision of their criminal codes, and states and countries considering codification of rules of evidence, including New York and Canada. He has trained federal and state judges at the Federal Judicial Center and the National Judicial College, the principal agencies for the education of federal and state judges, respectively. Rothstein also was consultant to the IRS and Treasury Department in the drafting of successful mutual assistance treaties with Switzerland and other countries, providing (for the first time in several instances) much needed cross-border procedures for obtaining testimony and other evidence in criminal cases. He was also consultant on electronic evidence to the National Commission on Restructuring the Internal Revenue Service, as well as to the Georgetown University Project on Scientific Validity and the Courts.
His books and long-running series of articles and conference programs for judges and attorneys on the Federal Rules of Evidence, together with his chairmanship of the Association of American Law Schools Evidence Section and of an American Bar Association Committee studying the Rules, are credited with advancing in a major way professionalism and competence in the use and teaching of the Rules.
He has designed and run trial-lawyer training programs for the Justice Department and other government agencies and leading Washington law firms; and has run a federal public defender service. He has represented prominent public figures, and has been invited to write Friend of the Court briefs in several important Supreme Court cases, including two of the leading evidence cases and a petition for certiorari in a case involving President Bill and Hillary Clinton and Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr. The Supreme Court has cited his work.
Professor Rothstein is also frequently sought out as a public commentator on many of the important legal developments of our times.
Rothstein has been notified by SSRN he is currently among their “top 10% of authors by all-time downloads.” In addition several of his new articles individually are on SSRN’s top ten list, including (1) “A Game of Katso and Mouse: Current Theories for Getting Forensic Analysis Evidence Past the Confrontation Clause” (Dec.10, 2018, concerning latest Scotus Confrontation Clause developments) (with RJ Coleman), forthcoming Am. Crim. L. Rev. Vol. 57, available now at http://ssrn.com/abstract=3299670Links to an external site. or https://scholarship.law.georgetown.edu/facpub/2114Links to an external site. ; and (2) “Demystifying Burdens of Proof and the Effect of Rebuttable Evidentiary Presumptions in Civil and Criminal Trials” (80 pp.) available at https://scholarship.law.georgetown.edu/facpub/2001Links to an external site. or https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3050687Links to an external site.
2019 also saw BRAND NEW EDITIONS of several Rothstein BOOKS: (1) EVIDENCE: CASES, MATERIALS & PROBLEMS (5th ed. 2019, Carolina Academic Press; lots new stuff plus copious teachers’ manual) (with David Crump & Tamara Lawson); (2) FEDERAL RULES OF EVIDENCE (2019, Thomson-Reuters-West; hard copy & also on Westlaw); and (3) FEDERAL TESTIMONIAL PRIVILEGES (2019, Thomson-Reuters-West; hard copy & also on Westlaw) (with Susan Crump).
You may also be interested in his full doctrine-of-chances piece in the Oxford Univ. peer-reviewed Journal of Law, Probability & Risk at https://scholarship.law.georgetown.edu/facpub/1481Links to an external site. or http://ssrn.com/abstract=2603872Links to an external site. and his debate with Prof. Imwinkelried on FRE 608 at https://dspace2.creighton.edu/xmlui/bitstream/handle/10504/84525/49CreightonLRev121.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=yLinks to an external site. that attracted legendary Judge Jack Weinstein’s kudos.
Contributions to Law Reviews and Other Scholarly Journals
U.S. Supreme Court Briefs
"Breathalyzer Giant Accused of Fraud Won't Come Clean About Booze Tests", coverage in The Daily Beast, February 3, 2020 quoting Professor Paul Rothstein.
"Gorsuch has ruled for police, and suspects, in crime cases," coverage by Livingston Ledger, December 15, 2019, quoting Professor Paul Rothstein.
"Plato Cacheris, Washington ‘Super Lawyer’ in Headline Cases, Dies at 90," coverage by The New York Times, September 26, 2019, quoting Professor Paul Rothstein.
"The Hostile Government Witness: Problems for Both Sides", coverage in The New York Law Journal, May 13, 2019 featuring Professor Paul Rothstein.