2Ls Bailey Beauchamp and Lauren O'Neil
The strength of Miami Law's moot court team is a key reason it was ranked 21st in the U.S. for 2020-21 out of all 200 ABA-accredited law schools. To amass the best, Miami Law hosts its annual John T. Gaubatz Moot Court Competition, the primary moot court contest at Miami Law. After a long and challenging competition, 2Ls Bailey Beauchamp and Lauren O’Neil took home first place this year.
Beauchamp is a member of the Children and Youth Law Clinic and serves as the vice president of Miami Law Women and as co-chair of the Public Interest Network. O’Neil is a member of the Miami Law Innocence Clinic and the University of Miami Law Review. Along with winning the competition, O’Neil was awarded best oral advocator.
Celebrated Miami Law moot competition
The Charles C. Papy Jr. Moot Court Board, Miami Law’s oldest and largest advocacy program, hosts the Gaubatz Competition every fall semester to determine the incoming class of board members. All competing teams must draft and submit appellate briefs and argue in at least two oral rounds. The top 16 teams then compete in a bracketed competition, culminating in the final round, hosted October 19.
Named in memory of Miami Law Professor John T. Gaubatz, who directed both the graduate LL.M. program on estate planning and the Philip E. Heckerling Institute on Estate Planning, the competition provides an excellent opportunity for Miami Law students to practice “real lawyering” in a simulated setting.
Praise from judges
In the final round of competition, Beauchamp and O’Neil squared off against fellow 2Ls Jessica Nunez and Bailey Pasho-Towns in front of three very distinguished judges. On the bench sat Justice John D. Couriel, J.D. ’03, of the Florida Supreme Court, Judge Paul C. Huck, J.D. ’65, and Judge Beth Bloom, ’88, the latter both of the United States Court for the Southern District of Florida.
The two teams argued their perspective positions involving a fictitious client’s Fourth Amendment rights, protecting against unreasonable searches and seizures, and the Federal Analogue Act of the Control Substances Act. Each team argued fiercely, leaving the judges with a difficult decision.
“You’re mature beyond your years,” Couriel complimented the four finalists. Huck agreed, commending them and noting that “nobody panicked.” Bloom described the competitors as “articulate and confident.” All three judges agreed that they would be lucky to have one of the finalists as a clerk.
This year, more than 150 judges and practitioners, many of whom are around the country, volunteered to help make the competition a successful event.