Law students mooting their way to success

Congratulations to final-year Law with Business BSc(Hons) students George Stead and Callum Kirk who defeated Reading University in the semi-final round of the OUP National Mooting Competition. They are now through to the final four pairs in the country.

Mooting competitions offer law students the opportunity to practise their oral and written skills. Students argue both sides of a fictitious legal case in a courtroom setting, before of a panel of real judges.

The moot problem for the quarter-final round concerned an action taken by a son against his father. The father had left his premises with his ten year old son in the care of his drunk grandfather who proceeded to play a game of rugby in the garden with the son – resulting in spinal cord injuries to the son. It had to be established under the common law rules of tort that the father was liable for the injuries for his failure to provide adequate care, on the basis that he had an assumption of responsibility for the welfare of his son and the injury to his son was reasonably foreseeable to suffice in passing the test of the reasonable man.

George said ‘We both enjoyed the independent research we undertook to find the correct law in support of our arguments, it is satisfying after hours of research to find a judgement or obiter dicta in a case which fully supports your submissions.’

‘We have both learnt how to interact with legal professionals upon being questioned on the law and in addition to use our initiative to answer difficult judicial interventions under pressure.’

Callum added: ‘The experience developed our public speaking skills and use of persuasion, this is not only beneficial for ourselves who wish to pursue careers at the bar but for anyone intending to enter a client based profession. The experience as a whole is hard work, yet the ultimate reward is well worth the input.’

Zoe Swan, course leader for undergraduate law courses said ‘Mooting really does give students the best opportunity to engage with the law. The level of legal research required for a moot means students have to understand the legal principles from both sides of a case. The skills mooters develop most definitely support their academic development and transfer into a varied range of employability skills . Callum and George started mooting in their first year at Brighton and their hard work and commitment to succeed has really paid off. I am very proud of how they have developed and of all they have achieved.’

Callum and George now progress onto the semi-final round of the competition. We wish them the best of luck.

The OUP National Mooting Competition is one of the largest in the country drawing over 60 teams each year. After four rounds of knock out competition four teams compete in the final.

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