PUBLIC INFORMATION OFFICER
ANGELA R. ANTHONY
University New Orleans School of Law joins in 200-year celebration
of the French Civil Code
School of Law at Loyola University New Orleans, the Louisiana
Supreme Court and the French Ministry of Justice will come
together in New Orleans to celebrate the Bicentennial of the
French Civil Code. On Wednesday, September 8, legal scholars
and distinguished justices will offer a day filled with exciting
discussions, historical perceptions and a tour of the newly
restored Louisiana Supreme Court located in the French Quarter.
day begins at 9 a.m. with a welcome from Loyola President,
the Rev. Kevin Wm. Wildes, S.J., and Law Dean Brian Bromberger.
Louisiana Supreme Court Chief Justice Pascal Calogero, Jr.
and his French counterpart Guy Canivet, president of the Cour
de Cassation, France's highest and most important appellate
court for civil matters, will both make presentations. The
day will end with discussions on the French code as a model
for most of Louisiana's civil code. Other speakers include
Professors David Gruning and Mary Algero from Loyola, Justices
Bernette Johnson and Jeffrey P. Victory from the Louisiana
Supreme Court, and Judge Alain Lacabarats , president of the
Paris Court of Appeal.
relationship between France and Louisiana is significant.
The first French Civil Code, adopted in 1804, is commonly
referred to as the Code Napoleon. It was the first successful
attempt to codify European Civil Law; that is, the private
civil law of continental Europe derived in part from Roman
law and the work of European scholars who rediscovered and
elaborated on Roman law in the middle ages up until the French
Revolution. The Code Napoleon was influential throughout Europe,
Latin America, and Asia and many countries' private civil
law have borrowed from it or been influenced by it. When
Louisiana lawyers drafted the first civil code for Louisiana
in 1808, they, too, borrowed heavily from the Code Napoleon
and were influenced by it. Today, significant parts of Louisiana's
current civil code are still closely modeled on, and in some
case still almost identical to, the Code Napoleon.
Assistant Professor of Law John Lovett explains, "Civilian
legal systems, especially those with Civil Codes like France,
tend to regard laws enacted by the legislature as the most
important source of law. Common law systems, like England,
and the rest of the United States, have laws made by legislatures,
too, but also give great consideration to laws made by judges-the
common law. Louisiana today is a mixed jurisdiction. We
have a strong civil code that, just as the Code Napoleon did,
provides the most important source of law for subjects like
family law, successions, private contracts, property, leases,
sales, and mortgage, but we have also adopted laws and legal
practices from our common law neighbors in the other 49 states."
University New Orleans was chartered in 1912. The Loyola
School of Law operates both a day program for full-time students
and an evening program for part-time students with a total
enrollment of approximately 650 students and 30 full-time
faculty members. The law school is a member of the Association
of American Law Schools and is accredited by the American
Bar Association. Visit Loyola University New Orleans on the
World Wide Web at http://www.loyno.edu