Laurel S. Terry
Professor of Law
Harvey A. Feldman Distinguished Faculty Scholar
J.D., University of California, Los Angeles
B.A., University of California, San Diego
Cross-Border Legal Practice Seminar
Lawyering in a Global World
My teaching in the required Professional Responsibility course (and previously in Civil Procedure) has been very much informed by my experiences as a judicial clerk in the 9th Circuit, as an extern in the 2nd Circuit, and as a litigator with a large law firm in Portland, Oregon. During all three of these experiences, I was surprised how often I saw top lawyers and law firms ignore statutory elements or fail to respond to some of the arguments raised by their opponents. As a result, I work with my students to help them develop a methodical approach to legal analysis that will serve them well in any field of law.
My Cross-Border Legal Practice Seminar involves cutting-edge issues related to globalization and the legal profession. My seminar students help me explore the issues that I encounter as part of my research and service, often writing their seminar papers on issues for which there is no existing scholarly literature.
I am excited to be teaching a new course entitled Lawyering in a Global World in the spring of 2016. Because I study global legal profession developments, I have been aware of some of the critiques of U.S. legal education, as well as a number of exciting developments around the world. I have learned a lot about what clients want and need as a result of the conferences I attend, the people I meet, and my involvement in developments such as the award-winning LawWithoutWalls™ project. The Lawyering in a Global World course represents my effort to respond to some of the legitimate critiques of legal education and provide students with information and skills they need to be an effective lawyer in our interconnected global world.
The focus of my research and writing is on issues related to globalization and the legal profession. Clients — all kinds of clients — don’t just stay in one place anymore. For example, in 2012, every state except Hawaii exported more than a billion dollars of goods. U.S. lawyers now have to be ready to help their clients operate around the world. This is also true for individual clients. The U.S. has a large (and growing) foreign-born population. This matters to lawyers because it means that a lawyer’s individual clients are increasingly likely to be involved in a business matter or have an inheritance or family law matter that involves a non-U.S. jurisdiction. Even government and criminal law are now global.
Although globalization is a fact of life for clients and thus lawyers, the regulatory structure has not caught up to this globalization reality. My scholarship focuses on existing global regulation, regulatory gaps, and efforts by the legal profession and others to fill those gaps. As a result, I focus on a wide range of issues, ranging from the impact on the legal profession of international entities such as the World Trade Organization and the FATF to the dramatic regulatory changes in the UK and Australia that have changed the discussions about lawyer regulation, to the efforts to develop an international network of lawyer regulators. The one thing that these issues have in common is that all of them involve, in some fashion, globalization and the legal profession. I write about problems I see in an effort to help develop dialogue and ultimately solutions.
In addition to producing my own scholarship, I have arranged for publication of four global legal practice Symposium issues, three of which provided law review opportunities for our students. Because I realize that not everyone wants or needs to read a law review article with small-font footnotes, I try to share my ideas in a variety of formats. I have published a limerick about the GATS (perhaps my favorite publication!), have presented my research in an “Informatics” format, and have written shorter targeted versions of longer articles. I usually end up giving talks about the subjects I write about and I post my presentation slides online for those who would rather zip through a presentation, rather than read a long footnoted article.
There aren’t many people who do the type of research I do — it’s definitely a growth area and I welcome student help and support. I always have lots of ideas of issues that have not yet been addressed. In the classes I teach, I believe in using the “one minute aside” comment that exposes students to contemporary issues and debates while covering traditional material.
One of the Core Principles of our Faculty is that we willingly contribute our services to the university and to local, state, national, and international efforts to improve global understanding and the lives and well-being of our students and the worlds in which they will live. I not only am fully committed to this principle but I try to engage in service that will benefit the students by also helping my teaching and my scholarship. I also am committed to transparency and through the presentations page on my Penn State personal website, I try to share my research and service with as many people as possible.
My service focuses on international, national, and state organizations that are involved in issues related to lawyer regulation. For example, I am member of the International Bar Association’s International Trade in Legal Services Committee and recently wrote a new edition of a Handbook for bar associations located around the world to help them learn what they need to know about the current World Trade Organization legal services negotiations. I have also represented the IBA before WTO and the United Nations groups. In 2010, I wrote and spoke about the need for an international network of lawyer regulators that would be similar to the international networks that exist in other regulated fields; this has now happened and I was very pleased to be invited to be a speaker at the 2012 inaugural International Conference of Legal Regulators held in London.
At the national level, I have been a member of ABA Committees that dealt with all three stages of lawyer regulation: admissions; lawyer conduct rules; and lawyer discipline. I currently am a member of the ABA’s Task Force on International Trade in Legal Services, which not only provides a useful opportunity for service, but also helps me stay abreast of current developments. I provide web content not only for my own Global Legal Resources page, but for the ABA.
In addition to my international and national service, I am active within Pennsylvania. I am currently and for many years have been a member of the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s Committee on Legal Ethics and Professional Responsibility; I served as Vice-Chair of this Committee for more than a decade. I served on the nine-person Work Group appointed by the Supreme Court that made recommendations about a new Code of Judicial Ethics; the Pennsylvania Supreme Court adopted a new Code that took effect July 1, 2014. I also have been an active member of a number of law school and University-wide committees.
Community is important to me. I think my most lasting scholarly legacy won’t be my publications, but will be the students I have influenced and the individuals that I have introduced to each other and the networks and communities that I have tried to build. My scholarly writing reflects my belief about the importance of community.
The value I place on community helps explain why I teach at Penn State’s Dickinson School of Law. When I first moved to Pennsylvania from the West Coast, I certainly wasn’t expecting that I would end up staying here longer than anyplace else I had ever lived. Community is the reason why I have remained here so long. I have a wonderful community of students and a supportive, collegial community of colleagues. And I really love living and teaching in Carlisle. I have the advantages of a liberal arts college-like experience with the resources of an R-1 research university. I also have the pleasure of living in a small college town, but I can still go to meetings in New York and Washington as a “day trip.” I have personal and professional networks around the world and I like the fact that I can keep in touch with these communities with access via Amtrak and via MDT, BWI, IAD, DCA, PHL and even occasionally EWR. In short, this is a great set of communities and I’m very glad to be here!
My engagement with the profession permeates everything I do. My research focuses on globalization and the legal profession and I could not do what I do without being engaged with the profession. I write about the legal profession and I work with the legal profession as part of my service on state, national and international committees. I learn a lot from interacting with practicing lawyers. In recent years I have started to bring members of the profession into the classes I teach so that students can hear both academic and practitioner perspectives on the issues they are studying.
I enjoy snorkeling and working with photos.
"Admitting Foreign-Trained Lawyers in States Other than New York: Why It Matters," 38 The Bar Examiner (December 2014)
"Putting the Legal Profession’s Monopoly on the Practice of Law in a Global Context," 82 Fordham L. Rev. ___ (2014)(forthcoming)
"Reflections on Lawyer Mobility, Accountability, and Regulatory Systems: Has the Time Come to Talk About the Elephant in the Room?" 17 Legal Ethics __ (2014) (Oxford/Hart, forthcoming)
"Transnational Legal Practice (International) [2010-2012]," 47 Int’l L. 485 (2013)
"Transnational Legal Practice (United States) [2010-2012]," 47 Int’l L. 499 (2013)
"Trends in Global and Canadian Lawyer Regulation," 76 Saskatchewan L. Rev. 145 (2013)
"Creating an International Network of Lawyer Regulators: The 2012 International Conference of Legal Regulators," 18 The Bar Examiner (June 2013)
“Adopting Regulatory Objectives for the Legal Profession,” 80 Fordham L. Rev. 2685 (with Steve Mark and Tahlia Gordon, 2012)
“Trends and Challenges in Lawyer Regulation: The Impact of Globalization and Technology,” 80 Fordham L. Rev. 2661 (with Steve Mark and Tahlia Gordon, 2012)
"International Initiatives That Facilitate Global Mobility in Higher Education," 2011 Mich. St. L. Rev. 305
“From GATS to APEC: The Impact of Trade Agreements on Legal Services,”43 Akron L. Rev. 875 (2010)
“Transnational Legal Practice: 2009 Year-in-Review,” 44 Int’l L. 563 (2010)
“The European Commission Project Regarding Competition in Professional Services,” 28 Nw J. Int’l L. & Bus. 1 (2009)
“The Legal World is Flat: Globalization and its Effect on Lawyers Practicing in Non-Global Law Firms,” 28 NW J. Int’l L. & Bus. 527 (2008)
“The Bologna Process and Its Impact on Europe: Much More than Degree Changes,” 41 Vand. J. Transnat’l L. 107 (2008)
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