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Student wins national legal-writing award


April 09, 2012

Third-year student Michael Vincent recently won the Scribes Law-Review Award from the American Society of Legal Writers for his paper, "Computer-Managed Perpetual Trusts." The annual award is given to a student for the best-written article in a law review or journal.

It was the second year in a row that a College of Law student has captured the top prize. Cody Huffaker (Class of 2011) won the competition last year for his article, “A New Type of Commandeering the Bypass Clause of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Stimulus Package).”

This year, Vincent's article and one by 3L Allie Clemency were among 90 submissions in the competition. Vincent placed first, and Clemency was among the 13 finalists for her paper, "Friending, Following and Digging up Evidentiary Dirt: The Ethical Implications of Investigating Information on Social Media Websites."

Vincent’s article discusses the implications of Artificial intelligence technology for managing trusts. It was published in the Summer 2011 issue of Jurimetrics: The Journal of Law, Science, and Technology, which is published by the College of Law for the ABA Section on Science & Technology Law.

“It’s a phenomenal article that addresses legal issues that are almost certain to arise in states that have eliminated the rule against perpetuities, which prohibits perpetual trusts,” said Adam Chodorow, Faculty Editor of Jurimetrics.  “Perpetual trusts are generally frowned upon because the trust settlor cannot possibly anticipate what is to come, and will not be in a position to make changes to the trust if necessary.  Artificial intelligence is a potential solution to this concern, because it could potential respond to new circumstances.  This article focuses on the implications of using artificial intelligence to manage perpetual trusts.”

"I am very thrilled and honored to have won the award," said Vincent, who is Production & Web Editor of Jurimetrics.

To read the article, click here.

Vincent serves on the executive committee of the Moot Court Board. He will clerk for Judge Ann Scott Timmer on the Arizona Court of Appeals after graduating this May with a Law, Science, & Technology certificate.

Clemency's paper, published in the Arizona State Law Journal in the fall of 2011, explores the ethical implications of using social media as an investigative tool in litigation. To read her article, click here.