George Mason University Antonin Scalia Law School

Symposium on Civil Justice Issues

Event Details

  • Date:
  • Venue: George Mason University Antonin Scalia Law School
  • Division: The Judicial Education Program


The US civil justice system is evolving rapidly. At both the federal and state levels, legislative and judicial actions are generating a wave of new innovative legal theories and procedural maneuvers. The Judicial Symposium on Civil Justice Issues served to highlight recent developments and growing trends in civil litigation, and it provided an opportunity for judges to review, critique, and question contemporary issues in civil justice.

This year’s Symposium tackled such hot issues as forum shopping in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2017 Bristol-Myers Squibb decision; the legal status of mandatory arbitration, class action waivers, and other such terms in employment agreements; and whether generic or brand manufacturers should be liable when patients are injured by generic drugs. The program also featured a “Great Debate,” in which well-known legal scholars squared-off to argue whether global warming should be considered a public nuisance.

Each year, participating judges are encouraged to ask probing questions and seek insight into some of the most contentious legal issues of our day. And the program is designed to allow judges ample time to interact with fellow participants and speakers.

Monday, May 21
Panel 1 – Emerging Issues in Civil Justice

Panel 2 – Forum Shopping After Bristol-Myers Squibb

Lunch Panel – The Great Debate: Is Global Warming a Public Nuisance?

Panel 3 – Innovator or Generic Liability: Who Should Be Responsible for Generic Drug Injuries?

Panel 4 – Third Party Litigation Financing: Does It Pose Special Ethical Concerns?

Tuesday, May 22
Panel 1 – Multi-District Litigation: Does the Process Need Reform?

Panel 2 – Mandatory Arbitration, Class Action Waivers, and Other Employment Contract Agreements