Moot Court Competition
The 16th Annual Williams Institute Moot Court Competition, Preliminary Rounds
Saturday, March 21, 2020
UCLA School of Law
Volunteer to Judge
We are seeking attorneys and sitting judges to judge the preliminary rounds of the competition on March 21, 2020. Judges will receive a complimentary ticket to our Annual Update and Gala Reception on April 3, 2020. To sign up, please visit the judges’ page.
Thank you for your interest, registration is now closed for the 2020 Williams Institute Moot Court Competition.
The Williams Institute hosts the only national moot court competition dedicated exclusively to the areas of sexual orientation and gender identity law. Now in its 16th year, the competition provides an opportunity for competitors to write an appellate brief on a current legal topic and to argue the case before a panel of judges. The competition is designed to promote and recognize the finest oral and written advocacy on a significant problem in sexual orientation and gender identity law.
The upcoming competition will take place over two days in the spring of 2020. Four rounds of arguments (two preliminary rounds, quarter-finals, and semi-finals) will take place on Saturday, March 21, 2020. The final round will take place on Friday, April 3, 2020 during the Williams Institute’s Annual Update Conference. The Williams Institute will cover finalists’ travel expenses (two advocates per team) for the final round. All events will take place at the UCLA School of Law.
During the preliminary rounds, each team is guaranteed a minimum of two rounds of oral argument. Scoring for the preliminary rounds will be based on the written brief and both rounds of oral argument. The top eight teams will advance to the quarter-finals, and from there, the top four teams will move on to the semi-finals, with the two highest scoring teams invited to compete in the final round. Scoring in the quarter-final, semi-final and final rounds will be based only on oral argument.
2019-2020 Competition Calendar
November 1, 2019 – Registration opens
December 2, 2019 – Registration closes*
December 17, 2019 – Problem released
February 11, 2020 – Last day for questions/problem clarification
February 17, 2020 – Briefs due
March 21, 2020 – Preliminary, quarter-final, and semi-final rounds
April 3, 2020 – Final round of competition
There is a non-refundable registration fee of $450.
Each team may consist of two or three members. If a team has three members, all must argue in the competition but only two may argue in any given round. No more than two teams from single a law school may compete.
The winning team will receive a prize of $500. Prizes of $200 will also be given for the best brief and the best oral advocate. (Prize money is considered taxable income.)
Sample Score Sheets
These sample score sheets are intended to provide guidance as to the scoring criteria for the written brief and oral rounds of competition. The Executive Board reserves the right to modify the score sheets.
The 2019-2020 problem will be posted in December. Access information will be emailed to all registered teams.
Early reservations are strongly suggested.
A block of rooms has been reserved for moot court participants at the UCLA Guest House, which is a short walking distance to the UCLA School of Law. Room rates are $229 per night (tax-exempt). To make a reservation, please call the hotel directly at (310) 825-2923 and request a room under the “UCLA Williams Institute Moot Court Competition 2020” room block. The reservation deadline is 3pm (PST) in February 18, 2020. All hotel charges are the responsibility of guests and early reservations are strongly suggested.
Click here for additional places to stay in the immediate area. Make sure to mention UCLA when making your reservation as many of the hotels listed offer a discount for UCLA visitors. Please keep in mind that the listed prices are subject to change.
Oral Argument Practice
Please note, teams will no longer be reimbursed by the Williams Institute for practicing their arguments in front of sitting judges.
For additional information or questions regarding the competition please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
We look forward to hearing from you and to your participation in our competition!