Civil procedure is usually offered during your first semester of 1L year, so it’s where many students first get acquainted with legal reasoning. At my school, UChicago, where we were on the quarter system, Civ Pro 1 was one of only two exams we had our first quarter. As such, all of us over-studied horribly for it, because we didn’t yet know where to say enough is enough. Despite consulting a lot of resources, my study group agreed that only a couple of the supplements we checked were outstanding.

Here are the best civ pro supplements:

Civil Procedure: Examples and Explanations (Examples & Explanations Series)- By Joseph Glannon

This E&E is the one civ pro supplement that law students universally agree you need to read before taking the exam. Well, law students don’t universally agree on anything, but the opinion here is close to unanimous.

Why is the Glannon Examples and Explanations such a useful tool for civ pro? A lot of rules of procedure are particular, nit-picky stuff (quick quiz for law students in their first several weeks: how long do you have to respond to a 12(b)(6) motion?). The supplement will help you with the gargantuan task of remembering these detailed rules.

For those of you who don’t know how E&Es work yet, they provide an in-depth summary of the law followed by “examples,” fact patterns where you get a chance to be quizzed and decide how the law will apply to this particular situation. Next, you will find “explanations,” answers that show you how the author would apply the law to that set of facts. (The author, Glannon, is a law professor and a well-known guide for thousands upon thousands of law students)

The only drawback? Everyone else will have read this book, so it might be optimistic to hope for a massive advantage by reading it. However, not reading it might very well put you at a disadvantage. This Civ Pro E&E also shows you how you should reason on an exam, so they are indispensable your first term of 1L.

Introduction to Civil Procedure, Fourth Edition- By Richard Freer

This book is the authority on all things Civ Pro. Frankly, I wouldn’t have thought you could write 896 useful pages on the subject. If you find Civ Pro fascinating then lucky you because it’s just about the driest subject you will encounter in law school. However, Freer’s writing makes it interesting. At this length, it might be more accurate to call this a hornbook rather than a supplement, but no matter- this book will help you thoroughly understand the subject, taking you step-by-step through all the critical points.

The Introduction to Civil Procedure, Fourth Edition should cover Twombley so that will be very helpful (I had no such luck as the case was too new). If you are looking for a potential edge over the competition (your classmates), this is where to look.

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