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2015-2016 Law Student Writing Competition Rules
The U.S. Court of Federal Claims Bar Association announces its 2015-2016 Law Student Writing Competition. The Court of Federal Claims Bar Association (CFCBA) is a voluntary bar association made up of nationwide members who practice law in the areas that lie within the specialized jurisdiction of the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. The goal of this competition is to promote interest in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims and its distinctive role in American jurisprudence, and to encourage law student scholarship on current topics that lie within its jurisdiction.
The United States Court of Federal Claims, which hears claims against the United States, has existed in its current and predecessor forms for more than 150 years. The current court was created, as the United States Claims Court, pursuant to Article I of the United States Constitution in October 1982. The name was changed to the United States Court of Federal Claims in 1992. Its predecessor, the United States Court of Claims, was created in 1855 when Congress established a court to hear private suits against the sovereign. The U.S. Court of Federal Claims is authorized to hear primarily money claims founded upon the Constitution, federal statutes, executive regulations, or contracts, express or implied-in-fact, with the United States.
The cases before the Court are diverse. They include (but are not limited to) disputes concerning tax refunds, contracts with the government, Fifth Amendment takings (which frequently raise environmental and natural resource issues), federal civilian and military pay, intellectual property (including use by the government or its contractors of technology protected by patents or copyrights), Native American rights, federal procurement "bid protests," and the federal Vaccine Injury Compensation program.
Entries to the contest may discuss any topic that lies within the procedure, substance, or scope of the jurisdiction of the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. The rules of the contest are posted here.
Entry deadline for the 2015-16 academic year is 11:59 PM July 15, 2016.
2013-2014 Writing Competition Winner
The winner of the 2013-2014 Law Student Writing Competition is Matthew Borden. Mr. Borden is a 2014 graduate of The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law. His winning entry for the 2013-14 U.S. Court of Federal Claims Bar Association’s Law Student Writing Competition was inspired by a 2013 NPR segment about the difficulties that exonerees face after release from prison, prompting Mr. Borden to investigate the process that currently exists for the federal exoneration compensation scheme. Throughout law school, Mr. Borden demonstrated a passion for legal research and writing, and this is not the first time that one of his papers has received public praise. In January 2014, Mr. Borden’s paper on the law governing the inheritance of digital music collections, “The Day the Music Died: Digital Inheritance and the Music Industry,” was recognized as the winning entry in the GRAMMY Foundation’s Entertainment Law Initiative Contest, and he was invited to attend and participate in the 2014 GRAMMY Awards in Los Angeles. That paper was subsequently published simultaneously in the Loyola of Los Angeles Entertainment Law Review and the American Bar Association Sports & Entertainment Lawyer. Please click here to view Mr. Borden's paper.
2012-2013 Writing Competition Winners
The bar association received several well-written entries for the 2012-2013 Law Student Writing Competition, most of which were highly meritorious and deserving of substantial praise. The following winners were selected by the committee:
The first place prize of $2,000 was awarded to Frances Wade, who is a 3L J.D. candidate at George Washington University Law School. Frances’ paper is titled, “Temporary Takings and Rails-to-Trails: The Supreme Court’s Arkansas Game and Fish Commission v. United States Invalidates the Federal Circuit’s Ladd v. United States.” A copy of her paper is found here.
The second place prize of $1,000 was awarded to Melanie Migliaccio, who is a 3L J.D. candidate at Liberty University School of Law. Melanie’s paper is titled, “Inconsistency and Uncertainty: The Problem of Applying Partnership Taxation to Limited Liability Companies.” A copy of her paper is found here.
Sharla Kooiker Wins 2011-2012 CFC Bar Association Writing Competition
Sharla Kooiker won the 2011-12 CFC Bar Association Law Student Writing Competition and was awarded a $2,000 prize at the 2012 CFC Judicial Conference in October 2012. Ms. Kooiker’s paper, entitled “The Burden: Establishing An Appropriate Standard In An Area of Scientific Uncertainty” addresses Vaccine Act litigation and argues for a statutory change to the prevailing evidentiary standard. Ms. Kooiker’s paper has been published in Volume 23, No. 1 Federal Circuit Bar Journal (2013).
Ms. Kooiker is a 2012 cum laude graduate of Chicago-Kent law School in Chicago, IL and is now employed as an associate at the Myers Billion law firm in Sioux Falls, SD.