Contracts exam strategy

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Contracts exam strategy

Postby villanovajew » Tue May 05, 2015 1:06 pm

Hey everyone. Wondering if I can get some feedback on my purported contracts exam strategy. I'm thinking that after noting the issues and finishing the formation business, I should list out the ~7 defenses to formation (regardless of how irrelevant in the facts) and do a quick IRAC for each one. Then do headings for Statute of Frauds, Promissory Estoppel, Impracticability, Impossibility, Frustration and Remedies, and just do IRACs for each. What do you think?

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Re: Contracts exam strategy

Postby BVest » Tue May 05, 2015 1:36 pm

You'll likely run out of time trying to do that. You'll want to do something like that for each issue that actually applies, but it can take place in about 2-4 sentences.

And keep in mind that Promissory Estoppel is not applicable unless you don't have an enforceable K, so argue issues related to enforceability before estoppel. (e.g. [issues of formation/enforceability]. "Given the above described issues with enforceability, P will want to alternatively argue promissory estoppel...")
Last edited by BVest on Sat Jan 27, 2018 5:05 am, edited 1 time in total.


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Re: Contracts exam strategy

Postby gonefishing » Tue May 05, 2015 2:16 pm

I'd address the issues that you locate first, and then spend whatever extra time you have laying out fluff. If you miss an issue that's lurking in the fact pattern, you will lose points. On the other hand, you probably will not lose any points for failing to set forth a rule which does not have any applicability to the questions presented in the exam.

Obviously, a brief rules discussion concerning formation (offer, acceptance, consideration, etc.) is probably worth points on any contracts exam, so you might want to toss that out early in your essay. If there is a formation issue somewhere in the fact pattern, you can just incorporate your earlier formation rules discussion by reference or cut and paste it.

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Re: Contracts exam strategy

Postby Jordan77 » Wed May 06, 2015 8:34 pm

I wouldn't recommend wasting your time making a category for every bullshit Contract issue that has ever come up in the history of contracts if it isn't applicable to your facts. Don't waste your time. You most likely won't get any sort of points or credit, and if I was the professor, I would actually think it discredits your ability to be short and concise.

With that said, often times a Professor will throw out a red herring issue, that really has no importance to the real factual and legal issues presented. You will definitely want to address such issues and show why it wouldn't apply.

If you're really worried about it, you could do 1 paragraph at the end of your analysis stating based on the facts those other principles appear to not be relevant.


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Re: Contracts exam strategy

Postby bnghle234 » Mon May 11, 2015 11:10 pm

With my experience, contracts exams are huge issue spotters, and you're just there to collect points. What I mean is that you don't need to philosophize about the law, but it's important to cover your ground. Touch upon every little issue, even if you give only a few sentences here and there. If there's a dicier issue, spend more time with it. It won't look pretty in the end, but it will rack up enough points where the professor will have a hard time convincing him/herself to grade you any lower than a top grade! Oh, and yes, headers and bold/italics are helpful.

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