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Florida Supreme Court justices to visit UF today

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Posted: Thursday, January 24, 2013 12:04 am

All seven Florida Supreme Court justices will be at UF today to judge the Maguire Appellate Advocacy Competition.

The event, which is an exhibition for the American Bar Association competition, will be at 10 a.m. today in the Martin H. Levin Advocacy Center courtroom. It is free and open to the public.

The exhibition allows the two UF Moot Court teams that will argue in the regional competition to practice their arguments and get feedback from the Florida justices, said Bob O’Linn, a 25-year-old, third-year law student and publicity chairman for Florida Moot Court.

A moot court is a mock trial for an appeals case that has no witnesses or jurors. Instead, the team must argue the merits of the law, O’Linn said.

During their arguments, they must field questions from the justices. At the end, the justices will give their opinions on the case.

The teams will compete in the regional competition — with the same case from today — Feb. 14 in Las Vegas.

The case involves whether a police officer can be held liable in a lawsuit. Team members will argue whether the actions of an officer in a fictitious case were within the limits of his or her job.

“It’s a great opportunity to showcase skills in front of the UF community and legal community and to hone arguments,” O’Linn said.

Mary Adkins, the team’s faculty adviser, said it was an accomplishment that all seven justices were coming to the exhibition.

“They are usually busy listening to real cases in Tallahassee,” she said.

Welcome to the discussion.