The Australian Law Students’ Association (ALSA) is the representative body of law students from Australia. The ALSA facilitates communication between the law student societies of most Australian law schools; it acts as a conduit for intervarsity dialogue and intercourse; it represents students to government, universities and the public; it authors numerous educational and careers publications; and it hosts an annual conference and two additional council meetings each year.

The Tasmanian University Law Society regularly sends both councillors and competitors to the annual ALSA conference, and has been successful in numerous competitions. Currently, the ALSA conference is the only opportunity for law students at the University of Tasmania to compete in national competitions for negotiations, client interview and witness examination.

The national finals of the following competitions are facilitated by ALSA:

Mooting

International Humanitarian Law Moot

Witness Examination

Negotiation

Client Interviewing

Paper Presentation

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Mooting

A moot is a simulated appeal in a superior court, based on a mock fact scenario and judgment from a lower court. No witnesses, just good old fashioned legal argument about whether or not the lower court decision was correct. Expect to be queried and questioned by the judges as they test you to see just how well you know your facts and the cases surrounding a particular point of law. Mooting is generally run in teams of two or three with the optional third member acting as assisting solicitor.

Further information on this competition can be found here:

http://www.alsa.asn.au/mooting/

The rules specific to the ALSA competition can be found here, and are current as of July 2017.

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International Humanitarian Law Moot

The Australian Red Cross and ALSA host the International Humanitarian Law (IHL) Mooting Competition during the annual ALSA Conference. The IHL Moot’s purpose is to raise awareness of international humanitarian law issues within the Australian university community. The Moot assists students in understanding and appreciating the growing importance of international humanitarian law, its nature as a system of protection during times of armed conflict and its role as fundamental part of international law.

Further information on this competition can be found here:

http://www.alsa.asn.au/ihl-mooting/

The rules specific to the ALSA competition can be found here, and are current as of July 2017.

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Witness Examination

Witness Examination is a simulated civil or criminal trial. The trial is run from the opening statements, through the examination of witnesses to the closing addresses. Sometimes it involves quick thinking, but the advocacy skills you’ll develop will be priceless.

Further information on this competition can be found here:

http://www.alsa.asn.au/witness-examination/

The rules specific to the ALSA competition can be found here, and are current as of July 2017.

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Negotiation

Two teams, each of two solicitors, meet to discuss a dispute between their clients. Each team is provided with a description of the fact scenario. Some facts are known to both teams, but each team has some secrets too. Each team is also armed with instructions from their client detailing exactly what outcome they should seek – and what should be avoided at all costs. The negotiation itself can last for up to an hour, after which each team is given a chance to review their own performance before a winner is picked. The winner is not necessarily the team that walks away with the better deal, but the one which gets closest to their client’s wishes.

Further information on this competition can be found here:

http://www.alsa.asn.au/negotiation/

The rules specific to the ALSA competition can be found here, and are current as of July 2017.

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Client Interviewing

The ability to interview a client effectively is one of the most important skills you will need as a graduate lawyer. When representing a client, it is vital to ensure that you have all the relevant details. Each team of two has a set amount of time to ascertain all information necessary to allow you to represent your client effectively and then some time will be set aside for you to reflect on your interview. Competitors must cover all the formalities of an interview, take note of the personal details of the client, the intricacies of the problem and suggest possible courses of action.

Further information on this competition can be found here:

http://www.alsa.asn.au/competitions/client-interview/

The rules specific to the ALSA competition can be found here, and are current as of July 2017.

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Paper Presentation

A different style of competition, Paper Presentation involves researching and writing a legal essay and then presenting it to a panel of judges. Competitors compete individually and the papers may be written on any legal topic. The panel may ask questions as they see fit during and after the presentation to find the depth of knowledge and understanding the competitor has in the chosen field. Competitors are assessed on the essay and the presentation.

Further information on this competition can be found here:

http://www.alsa.asn.au/competitions/paper-presentation/

The rules specific to the ALSA competition can be found here, and are current as of July 2017.

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Recent Success

2016

Chris Bigwood, 1st Place, Witness Examination

Mea Quartararo and Ryan North, Quarter Finals, International Humanitarian Law Moot

2015

Audrey Driscoll, George Holgate and Daryl Wong, 2nd Place, Championship Moot

Emilee Freeman and Heather Johns, Quarter Finals, International Humanitarian Law Moot

2013

Penelope Owen, 1st Place, Witness Examination

Kristy Riley and David Tan, 2nd Place, International Humanitarian Law Moot