2016-2017 Competition Rules

2016-2017 Competition Rules 
These are last year's rules. They should remain substantially similar for the 2017-18 competition, but the final rules will be posted alongside the problem. 

Section 1: Citation of the Rules
These rules may be cited in the following form and style: Stone Moot Ct. R. X.

Section 2: Eligibility
(a) In General. Except as provided in subsection (b), any second-year, third-year, and any L.L.M. student enrolled at Columbia Law School shall be eligible to participate in the Stone Moot Court Competition.

(b) Exception. A person who has competed in a previous Stone Moot Court Final Round shall not be eligible to participate.

Section 3: Commitment to the Competition
(a) Registration Requirements. Not later than 11:59 p.m. on October 14, 2016, an eligible person who intends to participate in the Stone Moot Court Competition shall register by completing the appropriate Google form.

(b) Transcript. Each person who registers in the Stone Moot Court Competition shall receive a notation of participation on his or her transcript. This does not count as credit toward graduation.

(c) Withdrawal. Any participant who is disqualified or otherwise withdraws from the competition may receive a notation of withdrawal on his or her transcript. A participant may be disqualified for submitting a brief or making an oral presentation that the Directors determine, in consultation with the presiding round judges, fails to meet acceptable professional standards.

Section 4: Minor Writing Credit
Any participant may earn Minor Writing credit by submitting his or her completed brief to Professor Phillip Genty for approval.

Section 5: Outside Assistance
(a) In General. Briefs must be independently written and researched. Each participant's arguments must be his or her own.

(b) Strategic, Substantive, Research, or Stylistic Assistance. With the exceptions of communication with one's partner and feedback from judges after oral arguments, participants may not give, solicit, or receive any strategic, substantive, research, or stylistic assistance specific to the problem, their brief, or their oral argument.

(c) Oral Argument Preparation. Subject to all requirements of the 2016-2017 Competition Rules, including this Section, participants may practice for oral arguments with their partner, other participants in this Competition, or any other Columbia Law School student. Participants may only conduct and/or participate in practice or moot oral arguments starting on November 1, 2016 at 11:59 p.m. Further, participants may only conduct and/or participate in moot oral arguments for the purpose of stylistic feedback. Participants, or any other Columbia Law Student conducting and/or participating in a moot oral argument, must not give, solicit, or receive substantive feedback.

(d) Disqualification. Failure to abide by this Section, as judged by the Directors, will result in disqualification.

Section 6: Initial Team, Client, and Issue Assignments
(a) In General. The Directors shall randomly assign each participant to a team, client, and issue.

(b) Team and Client Assignments.
1. In General. Each team shall consist of two participants, and the members of each team shall represent the same client.
2. Team Assignments. Except as provided in subparagraph (3), the Directors shall randomly assign each participant to a team and client.
3. Teammate Selection Exception. on the mutual request of any two participants, the Director shall assign those two participants to the same team. Such requests must be sent to the Directors by via the Google form the participants used to register.
4. Client Preferences. The Directors shall not accommodate any client preferences.
5. Odd Numbers. If an odd number of people participate in the Stone Moot Court Competition, the Directors shall randomly select one participant to compete without a teammate. This participant shall in no way be penalized for participating without a teammate.

(c) Issue Assignments.
1. In General. The Director shall randomly assign an issue to each participant.
2. Issue Exchanges. Issue exchanges between team partners are solely at the discretion of the Directors. Requests to exchange issues between team partners will not be considered after October 18, 2015.

(d) Notification. The Directors shall notify each participant of his or her initial team, client and issue assignments on October 15, 2016.

Section 7: Qualifying Round
(a) Timing. The Qualifying Round shall be held during the fall semester of 2016. 

(b) Record. The record shall be released to participants on October 11, 2016.

(c) Briefs.
1. In General. Each team shall submit a brief on or before November 1, 2016, by 11:59 p.m.
2. Contents. The brief shall contain the following sections:
A. Title Page (including participant and client names)
B. Table of Contents
C. Table of Authorities
D. Questions Presented
E. Stipulations
F. Key Constitutional and/or Statutory Provisions
G. Statement of the Case
H. Statement of Facts
I. Summary of the Argument
J. Argument
K. Conclusion
3. Length. The argument section for any one issue may be no longer than fifteen pages double-spaced.
4. Collaboration. Teammates shall collaborate to produce all sections described above except for those described in subparagraphs (I) and (J).
5. Submission. Each team shall submit one electronic copy in PDF format by email to the Directors.

(d) Oral Arguments.
1. In General. Oral arguments for the Qualifying Round shall be held during the fall semester. Oral arguments are scheduled for the week of November 16. Students with conflicts are expected to accommodate the schedule and should contact the Directors immediately.
2. Rounds. Each team shall participate in two oral arguments during the Qualifying Round at an hour and location to be determined by the Directors.
3. Length and Structure.
A. In General. Each participant shall be allotted fifteen minutes in which to present an oral argument.
B. Rebuttal. Each participant arguing for the side that brought the appeal may reserve up to three minutes for rebuttal by requesting it at the beginning of his or her argument.

(e) Scoring
1. In General. Each participant's brief and oral argument will be judged individually. Although judges should attempt to draw distinctions between the performances of the participants, they may assign the same score to multiple participants.
2. Cumulative Scores. A participant's cumulative score shall be the sum of:
A. the average of each 1-5 score awarded to the participant for his or her brief by each judge during the Qualifying Rounds.
B. the average of each 1-5 score awarded to the participant for his or her oral argument by each judge during the Qualifying Rounds; and
C. the average of any bonus points awarded to the participant for being the “best in round oral argument” or for “best fact section” by each judge during the Qualifying Rounds.
3. Penalties. Any participant who submits a brief late, or causes his or her partner to submit a late brief, will be penalized one point per day. The deadline for brief submission is 11:59 p.m. on November 1, 2016.

(f) Advancement.
1. In General.
A. Issue One. Of the participants assigned to argue Issue One, the eight participants who have the highest cumulative scores shall advance to the Elimination Round.
B. Issue Two. Of the participants assigned to argue Issue Two, the eight participants who have the highest cumulative scores shall advance to the Elimination Round.
2. Ties.
A. In General. In the event of a tie for the eighth-highest score on an issue, the participant with the higher average bonus point total shall advance.
B. Director Selection. In the event that subparagraph (A) does not resolve the tie, the Directors shall use a random generator to decide who advances.

Section 8: Elimination Round
(a) Timing. The Elimination Round shall be held during the spring semester of 2016.

(b) Reassignment of Teams.
1. Teams.
A. In General. Except as provided in subparagraph (B), the Directors shall randomly assign each participant who advances to a team.
B. Teammate Selection Exception. On the mutual request of the participants, the Directors shall assign to the same team any two participants who have advanced to the Elimination Round and who are assigned to different issues.
2. Issues. Each participant who advances to the Elimination Round shall brief and argue the same issue to which he or she was assigned in the Qualifying Round. 
3. Clients. For a given issue, if the number of advancing participants who represented Appellant in the Qualifying Round does not equal the number of advancing participants who represented Appellee in the Qualifying Round, the participants with the lowest scores for each issue will be asked to switch clients.
4. Withdrawal. An advancing participant who does not wish to continue in the competition may decline to do so without receiving a withdrawal notation on his or her transcript if the Directors are notified of the declination within 48 hours of the announcement of advancing participants, but will receive no recognition for advancing to the Elimination Round. The declining participant will be replaced by the participant with the next highest score for that issue.

(c) Briefs
1. In General. Each team shall submit a new or updated brief by February 1st 2017.
2. Contents. The brief shall contain the following sections:
A. Title Page (including participant and client names and an indication of which student wrote which issue)
B. Table of Contents
C. Table of Authorities
D. Questions Presented
E. Stipulations
F. Key Constitutional and/or Statutory Provisions
G. Statement of the Case
H. Statement of Facts
I. Summary of the Argument
J. Argument
K. Conclusion
3. Length. The argument section for any one issue may be no longer than fifteen pages double-spaced.
4. Collaboration. Teammates shall collaborate to produce all sections described above except for those described in subparagraphs (I) and (J).
5. Submission. Each team shall submit one electronic copy in PDF format to the Directors.

(d) Oral Arguments.
1. In General. Oral arguments for the Elimination Round shall be held on two nights during the spring semester. Students with conflicts are expected to accommodate the schedule and should contact the Directors immediately. 
2. Rounds. Each team shall participate in two oral arguments during the Elimination Round on the evenings of February 21 and 23.
3. Length and Structure.
A. In General. Each participant shall be allotted twenty minutes in which to present an oral argument.
B. Rebuttal. Each participant arguing for the side that brought the appeal may reserve up to three minutes for rebuttal by requesting it at the beginning of their argument.

(e) Scoring
1. In General. Each participant's brief and oral argument will be judged individually. Although judges should attempt to draw distinctions between the performances of the participants, they may assign the same score to multiple participants.
2. Cumulative Scores. A participant's cumulative score shall be the sum of:
A. the average of each 1-5 score awarded to the participant for his or her brief by each judge during the Elimination Rounds.
B. the average of each 1-5 score awarded to the participant for his or her oral argument by each judge during the Elimination Rounds; and
C. the average of any bonus points awarded to the participant for being the “best in round at oral argument” or for “best fact section” by each judge during the Elimination Rounds.
3. Penalties. Any participant who submits a brief late, or causes his or her partner to submit a late brief, will be penalized one point per day.

(d) Advancement.
1. In General.
A. Issue One. Of the participants assigned to argue Issue One, the two participants who have the highest cumulative scores shall advance to the Final Round.
B. Issue Two. Of the participants assigned to argue Issue Two, the two participants who have the highest cumulative scores shall advance to the Final Round.
2. Ties.
A. In General. In the event of a tie for the second-highest score on an issue, the participant with the higher average bonus point total shall advance.
B. Director Selection. In the event that subparagraph (A) does not resolve the tie, the Directors shall select a tied participant to advance using a random generator.

Section 9: Final Round
(a) Timing. The Final Round will be held April 7, 2016.

(b) Reassignment of Teams.
1. Teams. The Director shall reassign teams such that each participant who argued Issue One is paired with a participant who argued Issue Two.
2. Issues. each participant who advances to the Final Round shall brief and argue the same issue to which he or she was assigned in the preceding rounds.
3. Clients. For a given issue, if the advancing participants represent the same client, the participant with the lowest score will be asked to switch clients. Although some participants may be required to write a new brief and argue a new position, no one will have to brief or argue a new issue.
4. Withdrawal. An advancing participant who does not wish to continue in the competition may decline to do so without receiving a withdrawal notation on his or her transcript if the Director is notified of the declination within 48 hours of the announcement of advancing participants, but will receive no recognition for advancing to the Final Round. The declining participant will be replaced by the participant with the next highest score.

(c) Briefs.
1. In General. Each team shall submit a brief in March 2016, date to be decided.
2. Contents. The brief shall contain the following sections:
A. Title Page (including participant and client names)
B. Table of Contents
C. Table of Authorities
D. Questions Presented
E. Stipulations
F. Key Constitutional and/or Statutory Provisions
G. Statement of the Case
H. Statement of Facts
I. Summary of the Argument
J. Argument
K. Conclusion
3. Length. The argument section for any one issue may be no longer than twenty pages double-spaced.
4. Collaboration. Teammates shall collaborate to produce all sections described above except for those described in subparagraphs (I) and (J).
5. Submission. Each team shall submit one electronic copy in PDF format to the Directors.

(d) Oral Arguments.
1. In General. Oral arguments for the Final Round shall be held in the spring semester.
2. Length and Structure.
A. In General. Each participant shall be allotted twenty minutes in which to present an oral argument.
B. Rebuttal. Each participant arguing for the side that brought the appeal may reserve up to three minutes for rebuttal by requesting it at the beginning of their argument.

(e) Recognition.
1. In General. Only the panel of judges for the Final Round shall determine the participant with the best oral argument in the Final Round.
2. Lawrence S. Greenbaum Prize. The Lawrence S. Greenbaum Prize shall be awarded to the participant with the best oral argument in the Final Round.
3. Best Brief. The Moot Court Executive Board, in consultation with the Final Round judges, shall determine the participant with the best brief in the Final Round.

Section 10: Formatting
(a) Style. All brief submissions shall be written in Times New Roman font, size 12, double spaced.
(b) Citations. You may cite to the record in the following form: R. at X. 

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