Preparing for a Moot Court
Sitting in on a moot court can be an invaluable learning experience. But it can also be an extreme disappointment. The surest way to guarantee the latter is to walk into the moot cold. If you want to benefit from a moot, you need to do some preparation.
- Read a summary of the case. For cases granted review before the start of the current Term you can read the Supreme Court Insitute’s Term Preview Report. For cases granted throughout the term, we recommend reviewing the information available for each case on SCOTUSblog.
- Read the summary of argument section of the party briefs, which can also be found at SCOTUSblog.
- In cases in which the Solicitor General files an amicus brief, you should read the summary of argument section of that brief as well.
- Skip the summary and read the full argument sections instead.
- Read the relevant parts of the decision under review.
As you are reading the briefs keep in mind these basic questions:
- What rule is the party being mooted urging the Court to adopt?
- What are the best three points offered in support of that rule?
- What are the three most difficult questions that the party being mooted is likely to encounter?
- And lastly, How would you answer those three questions?
To complete your preparation, be sure to discuss the case with others who are attending. If you do everything suggested, you will be amazed at how much you can learn from a moot.