Michael Collins headshot
MC

Michael G. Collins

Professor
Unit: School of Law
Department: School of Law
Office location and address
WB301A
580 Massie Rd
Charlottesville, Virginia 22903
Education
J.D. Harvard Law School 1978
M.A. Stanford University 1975
B.A. Pomona College 1972
Biography

Michael Collins teaches Civil Procedure, Federal Courts, Conflict of Laws and Evidence. Before coming to UVA, where he is currently the Joseph M. Hartfield Professor of Law, Collins taught at Tulane Law School, where he was the Robert A. Ainsworth Professor of Law.

Prior to attending law school, Collins earned a graduate degree in classical languages and literature and an undergraduate degree in history and classics. After law school, he practiced commercial and employment law in Los Angeles, practiced civil rights law in New Orleans, and was a Bigelow Fellow at the University of Chicago Law School. He has also been a visiting professor at Boston University, George Washington, Ohio State and Richmond. While at Tulane, he was a three-time recipient of the law school's distinguished teaching award. And in 2013, he was a recipient of the University of Virginia's All-University Teaching Award.

Collins’ research interests lie in the areas of federal courts, procedure and legal history. His recently published works include the casebook Transnational Civil Litigation (with Joachim Zekoll and George Rutherglen), an article on the obligation of state courts to entertain sister-state claims (with Ann Woolhandler) and an article titled "Reconstructing Murdock v. Memphis." His writings have appeared in the California, Columbia, Emory, Georgetown and Virginia law reviews. He has also co-authored casebooks on federal jurisdiction and on first-year civil procedure, and he has published a handbook on constitutional tort litigation.

LAW 6000: Civil Procedure
Credits: 4
This course covers the procedures courts use in deciding lawsuits that do not involve criminal misconduct. Much of it is concerned with the process of litigation in trial courts, from the initial documents called pleadings, through the pre-trial process, especially the process of discovery in which parties obtain information from one another, to trial itself.
LAW 6104: Evidence
Credits: 3–4
The course will cover questions of relevance, hearsay, privilege, and expert testimony, among others, and it will focus largely on problems arising in concrete factual settings, as opposed to traditional case analysis. Major emphasis will be placed on the Federal Rules of Evidence, which now apply in the courts of roughly 40 states as well as the federal system.
LAW 6105: Federal Courts
Credits: 3–4
This course is about the federal judicial system and its relationship to various other decision-makers, including Congress and the state courts. We will examine the jurisdiction of the federal courts; the elements of a justiciable case or controversy; the role of state law and so-called "federal common law" in federal courts; implied causes of action; and state sovereign immunity.
LAW 7014: Conflict of Laws
Credits: 2–3
This course examines the rules and principles that govern the resolution of multi-jurisdictional conflicts of laws in the United States. The central issue throughout the course is, simply, what law governs a multi-jurisdictional dispute? It considers various theoretical bases for choice of law principles, as well as the principal constitutional limitations on choice of law.
LAW 8812: Independent Research
Credits: 2
This course is a semester-long independent research project resulting in a substantial research paper supervised and graded by a selected law school faculty member
LAW 8813: Independent Research
Credits: 3
This course is a semester-long independent research project resulting in a substantial research paper supervised and graded by a selected law school faculty member.
LAW 8814: Independent Research (YR)
This course is the first semester of a yearlong independent research project resulting in a substantial research paper supervised and graded by a selected law school faculty member.
LAW 8815: Independent Research (YR)
Credits: 2
This course is the second semester of a yearlong independent research project resulting in a substantial research paper supervised and graded by a selected law school faculty member.
LAW 8816: Independent Research (YR)
This course is the first semester of a yearlong independent research project resulting in a substantial research paper supervised and graded by a selected law school faculty member.
LAW 8817: Independent Research (YR)
Credits: 3
This course is the second semester of a yearlong independent research project resulting in a substantial research paper supervised and graded by a selected law school faculty member.
LAW 8818: Independent Research (YR)
This course is the first semester of a yearlong independent research project resulting in a substantial research paper supervised and graded by a selected law school faculty member.
LAW 8819: Independent Research (YR)
Credits: 3
This course is the second semester of a yearlong independent research project resulting in a substantial research paper supervised and graded by a selected law school faculty member.