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Harrisburg students successful in first transactional law meet

Two Harrisburg students had an impressive showing at the Mid-Atlantic Regional Transactional Law Meet held at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law of Yeshiva University in New York City.

Third-year students Talia Danon and Andrew Schneidman narrowly missed advancing to the national finals after losing in a tie-breaker to the team from Cornell Law School on Feb. 28. Danon and Schneidman won the award for best draft and best negotiation. They were the first Harrisburg students ever to compete in the meet.

A transactional law meet is a competition designed to provide students with a moot court-type experience in transactional law. The Harrisburg students represented a buyer in a fictitious sale of one business to another, complicated by the presence of a patented drug. The problem challenged them to work out an indemnification agreement, within the confines of the sale agreement, to allow the sale to go forward.

The competition involved participating in two national conference calls before the trip to New York, where they could ask questions of the clients, and then negotiating face-to-face in New York – with a panel of judges looking on and tallying points.

“The meet exposed us to the process of collaborative deal making, which was a contrast to the usual litigious approach we learn in law school. For a student like me, who aspires to a career as a deal lawyer, the competition was right up my alley,” Schneidman said. “I encourage other students with an interest in business transactions to check out the Law Meets website and see what it has to offer.”

“We were just so thrilled to have been given the opportunity to represent Widener Harrisburg in its first year participating in the Transactional LawMeet, and to have been able to do as well as we did,” Danon added. “It was truly a unique experience that gives the students participating the opportunity to do the work of deal lawyers and to see a transaction through from start to finish over the course of the competition.”

Schneidman, of Allendale, N.J., is the son of Jane and Steven Schneidman. Danon, of Fair Lawn, N.J. is the daughter of Hope and Rafael Danon.

Danon and Schneidman prepared for the competition with help from Professor Juliet M. Moringiello, Associate Professor Michael J. Hussey, Associate Professor of Legal Methods David Raeker-Jordan, who also teaches contract drafting, and alumna Angela McGowan ’07. McGowan gathered several of her colleagues from Rhoads & Sinon LLP to discuss the practical aspects of negotiating business deals over lunch with the students in the fall.

Hussey said Danon and Schneidman worked diligently over four months preparing for the competition.

“They thoroughly researched the issues in the problem and expertly listened to their client's wishes to draft and negotiate the best indemnification agreement for their client,” he said. “They showed that zealous representation of a client occurs not just in the courtroom but in the conference room as well. It was a pleasure to coach such exceptional students who are using the professional and practical education that we provide at Widener to achieve great success. We are very proud of them.”