real life experience
Forget about writing your thesis or a job as student-assistant: participating in a moot court is at the closest to the real lawyer work you can get. You will learn how to write legal arguments and plead your case convincingly in English. Your coaches are young lawyers themselves, and they will pass on their expertise and skills straight to you. This will make you highly qualified for any legal career you want to pursue.
It’s a team effort
Working in a team is sometimes challenging, often rewarding, and an absolute necessity if you want to pursue a legal career. Every single word you will write or plead during the moot is the result of a collective team effort. The best results are made by those teams that challenge each other, rather than just divide individual tasks. Besides, it’s just great fun – and chances are you will make friends for life!
Build your network
Over the years, the UvA team has traveled to Hong Kong, Vienna, Shanghai, Berlin, Milan, Stockholm and many more places. Hopefully we will be able to travel to some of these places again coming year. However, please keep in mind that due to COVID-19, it is possible that part of the competition will be held virtually. Even though it may not be possible to actually travel to all these places this year, competing in the competition is the closest you will be able to get to a trip across the globe in these times. You will be in contact with different teams and cultures from all over the world. The final rounds in Hong Kong and Vienna are visited by the best arbitration lawyers worldwide, and performing well in the moot will open many doors.
It’s just really good fun
Can you think of any other activity that both kickstarts your career and gives you the chance to meet hundreds of other students from all over the globe? For many previous participants, it is the social part that brings back the warmest memories.
Vlog by the 2018-2019 Team
How Does it Work?
Every team is allowed to participate in the general rounds in Vienna and Hong Kong. Out of the more then 350 teams that participate in Vienna, only 64 make it to the elimination rounds
Each team has 30 minutes pleading time, to be divided by the two oralists. Good oralists are responsive to the arguments of the other party and are able to change their oral submission on the spot, while using only as little notes as possible.
The written submissions must contain a maximum of 35 pages. Every year teams spend their last weeks trying to bring back the number of pages to 35 without losing any arguments. You will learn how to write concise and convincing.
Every year, dozens of international pre-moots are organized to allow teams to practice against each other. The Amsterdam team organises a pre-moot with over 16 international teams competing
Who Are We?
Successes of Our Team
Although the UvA only participates in the moot court since 2008, it has quickly gained a reputation as an excellent and social team in those years. The UvA team generally makes it to the elimination rounds in both Hong Kong and Vienna, wins prices for memoranda, team efforts and individual pleaders and the 2019 team even won the Hong Kong finals, as the first Dutch team to ever win the Willem C. Vis Moot Court!
You can find more about the results and experiences of previous teams here for Vienna and here for Hong Kong.
In the UvA team, every participant is assigned with an individual coach. There are weekly meetings between the team and the coaches to discuss arguments and practice pleadings. All coaches have previously participated the Willem C. Vis Moot Court Competition, and have served as arbitrators during the final rounds in Vienna or Hong Kong. The fact that all coaches are practicing lawyers is unique for the UvA team. Rather than the academic perspective that you have learnt for years, you will learn how to think, write and argue as a lawyer.