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B.A., Amherst College, summa cum laude
J.D., Berkeley Law

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Margaret S. Thomas

Liskow & Lewis Endowed Professorship and Ben R. Miller, Jr. Professorship
Professor of Law


Margaret Thomas joined the LSU Law Center faculty in 2011.  She teaches and writes about federal civil procedure and the federal courts.  Her scholarly interests also include the interplay between foreign affairs, procedure and federalism.

Professor Thomas came to LSU from California, where she taught as a fellow and lecturer at Berkeley Law from 2009-2011.  At Berkeley, she taught Civil Procedure II in the J.D. curriculum, and she developed courses to familiarize LL.M. students from civil law countries with American structural constitutional law and litigation practices.

Previously Professor Thomas practiced law as an appellate attorney in Los Angeles with California’s premier appellate boutique, Horvitz & Levy LLP.   Representative matters include international trademark infringement, personal jurisdiction over foreign entities, international choice of law, celebrity rights of publicity, punitive damages, enforcement of arbitration agreements, and complex insurance disputes.  In 2008-2010, she was recognized as a “rising star” in appellate law by the publishers of Southern California Super Lawyer: Rising Star Edition, an award recognizing outstanding attorneys under 40 with fewer than 10 years of practice.

Prior to joining Horvitz & Levy, she served as a law clerk for Judge Pamela Ann Rymer in the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and Judge George H. King in the United States District Court for the Central District of California.

Professor Thomas received her BA in German Literature and European Studies from Amherst College, graduating summa cum laude.  She received her JD from Berkeley Law.  While a student at Berkeley Law, she was the Essay and Book Review Editor of the California Law Review.  Upon graduation, she was selected for membership in the Order of the Coif and awarded the Thelen-Marrin writing prize, recognizing the faculty’s selection of the year’s best published student work.

Recent scholarly writing:

Parens Patriae and the States' Historic Police Powers, 69 SMU L. Rev. 759 (2016)  — selected for presentation, Junior Faculty Federal Courts Workshop (October 2015)

Morphing Case Boundaries in Multidistrict Litigation Settlements, 63 Emory L.J. 1339 (2014) – selected for presentation, Junior Faculty Federal Courts Workshop (October 2013) and Marquette Law School Junior Faculty Workshop (September 2013)

Constraining the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure through The Federalism Canons of Statutory Interpretation, 16 N.Y.U. J. Leg. & Pub. Pol'y 187 (2013) – selected for presentation, Junior Faculty Federal Courts Workshop (January 2011)

Courses Taught

Basic Civil Procedure I; Basic Civil Procedure II; Federal Complex Litigation; Evidence; Federal Courts