Jeremy's Weblog

I recently graduated from Harvard Law School. This is my weblog. It tries to be funny. E-mail me if you like it. For an index of what's lurking in the archives, sorted by category, click here.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Bar Study Update

I'm a couple of days into my "Too Little, Too Late" bar exam study regimen. (As the post below indicates, the study regimen includes spending a day going to Philadelphia just to see a baseball game. But I did bring some outlines on New Jersey Transit with me and got some reading done.) I've read through outlines for all of the MBE subjects, and a couple of the New York subjects, although lots of New York subjects still to go.

What I'm struck with is all the acronyms Bar/Bri thinks someone should remember. In lots of cases I think it would be easier to remember the rule than the acronym and what it stands for. And how to keep all of the acronyms straight, I have no idea. In the property outline alone, here's what we've got (this is all true):

1. The doctrine of waste: remember PURGE. Prior Use, Reasonable repair, Grant, Exploitation.

2. The creation of a joint tenancy: remember T-TIP. same Time, same Title, identical equal Interests, identical rights to Possess the whole.

3. Severance of a joint tenancy: remember SPAM. Sale, Partition, And Mortgage. (That A is kind of forced.)

4. Tenant wrongfully vacates: remember SIR. Surrender, Ignore, Re-let.

5. Constructive eviction: remember SING. Substantial Interference, Notice, Goodbye.

6. Tenant's entitlements when the implied warranty of habitability is breached: Remember MR^3. Move, Repair and deduct, Reduce rent, Remain in possession.

7. Landlord's tort liability: remember CLAPS. Common areas, Latent defects rule, Assumption of repairs, Public use rule, Short term lease of furnished dwelling.

8. Creating an affirmative easement: remember PING. Prescription, Implication, Necessity, Grant.

9. Types of negative easement: remember LASS. Light, Air, Support, and Streamwater.

10. Parties bound to real covenants: remember WITHN. Writing, Intent, Touch and concern, Horizontal and vertical privity, Notice.

11. When does the benefit of the promise run to the successor of the benefitted lot: remember WITV. Writing, Intent, Touch and concern, and Vertical privity.

[Note: why does Vertical privity get its own letter in this one and not the previous? Even if I somehow remember these acronyms, isn't that a little bit confusing?]

12. When are successors bound by equitable servitudes: Remember WITNes. Writing, Intent, Touch and concern, Notice.

[Note: why the extra "es" that stands for nothing? Is WITN any harder to remember than WITV for the previous one?]

13. Adverse possession: Remember COAH. Continuous use, Open and notorius, Actual use, Hostile use.

[Note: didn't I remember this one when I was learning trigonometry too?]

14. Termination of an easement: Remember END CRAMP. Estoppel, Necessity, Destruction of the servient land, Condemnation of the servient estate, Release, Abandonment, Merger doctrine, Prescription.

[Note: I'm really not making this up.]

15. Notice imputed to the defendant: Remember AIR. Actual notice, Inquiry notice, Record notice.

16. How does the deed pass from seller to buyer: Remember LEAD. Lawfully Executed And Delivered.

17. The real defenses to the holder in due course foreclosing a mortgage: Remember MAD FIFI^4. Material, Alteration, Duress, Fraud In the Factum, Illegality, [and 3 other I-words that aren't in the outline I have, so I just have to hope they're not important, as if I can really remember all of this anyway.]

That's seventeen acronyms, just for one subject. Is this *actually* helpful? Will I really remember what rule goes with WITV and what goes with WITHN, and what those letters stand for, and what doesn't get a letter -- and the seventy-five other rules that don't have acronyms at all, what about them?

Actually, here's a way to remember all of these acronyms. Just memorize this fact pattern:

MAD FIFI was a LASS who ate some SPAM. She stuck not a q-tip but a T-TIP down her throat and PURGEd in the sink, which was made of LEAD. It flew threw the AIR. It made a PING when it hit the metal. She got an END CRAMP from vomiting. There were no WITNesses, not even SIR, who liked to SING (and had, incidentally, recently given Fifi the CLAP(s)).

And, voila, there's 75% of what you need to know about Property.