Lyal Fox III and Jared Reynolds, third-year students at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, won the National Veterans Law Moot Court Competition held November 15 to 16 at George Washington University Law School and the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims in Washington, D.C.
Established in 2009, the National Veterans Law Moot Court Competition is the nation’s premier moot court competition focusing on veterans law. The tournament is co-sponsored by the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims, the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims Bar Association and the George Washington University Law School Moot Court Board.
The students argued Earhart v. McDonald. The case raised two issues: whether a veteran had waived her right to raise an issue on appeal that she did not raise in non-adversarial administrative proceedings and whether a drone operator can be classified under federal law as a “combat veteran” for purposes of establishing eligibility for benefits.
Fox and Reynolds won in the preliminary rounds before advancing to compete in three difficult elimination matches—including one against a second IIT Chicago-Kent team in the quarterfinals. Fox and Reynolds then defeated a team from Widener University in the semifinals and prevailed in the final round over a team from Florida Coastal College of Law. The final round of the tournament was judged by U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims judges Margaret Bartley, William Greene and William Moorman.
IIT Chicago-Kent won the championship in only its second time participating in the competition. Last year, the IIT Chicago-Kent team of Dustin Karrison ’14 and Alex Stephens ’14 reached the final four with Karrison winning individual honors as the tournament’s best oral advocate.
This year’s winning team member Lyal Fox III graduated from Iowa University with a degree in English and theater arts. Teammate Jared Reynolds graduated summa cum laude from the State University of New York at Oneonta with a degree in sociology.