Paul Bergman

Professor of Law Emeritus

  • B.A. UCLA, 1965
  • J.D. UC Berkeley, 1968
  • UCLA Faculty Since 1970

Paul Bergman joined Professor David Binder in pioneering the School of Law's Clinical Program in 1970. Since he became an Emeritus Professor, he primarily teaches Evidence. Prior to retirement he regularly taught courses such as Trial Advocacy, Film and the Law, and Street Law (a seminar in legal communication in which students taught legal concepts to high school students). Professor Bergman is regularly invited to give film clip-based presentations to groups of lawyers and judges all over the country. He has received the University's Distinguished Teaching Award and an award from the American Trial Lawyers Association for Excellence in Teaching Trial Advocacy. He was also awarded the Dickson Emeritus Professorship Award from UCLA Emeriti Relations for outstanding research, scholarly work, teaching and service since retirement.

Professor Bergman likes to play tennis, and often commutes by bicycle from Pasadena to UCLA. As a law student, he felt it his duty to keep levity in the classroom, a practice he continues as a teacher, earning him the gratitude of his students.

In the field of lawyering skills Professor Bergman has co-authored Deposition Questioning: Strategies and Techniques (with Binder and Moore) (2001); Depositions in a Nutshell (with Binder, Moore and Light) (2016); Trial Advocacy: Inferences, Arguments, Techniques (with Moore and Binder) (1996); Lawyers as Counselors: A Client Centered Approach (with Binder, Tremblay and Weinstein) (4th ed., 2019); Fact Investigation- From Hypothesis to Proof (with Binder) (1984); and Trial Advocacy in a Nutshell (6th ed., 2016). For Nolo Press, Bergman has created four books for laypeople who want to be “educated clients” or pro se litigants, including Nolo's Deposition Handbook (with Moore) (7th ed., 2018; 7th ed. forthcoming 2018); Represent Yourself in Court (with Berman-Barrett) (9th ed., 2016); The Criminal Law Handbook (with Berman-Barrett) (16th ed., 2020); and Criminal Law: A Desk Reference (5th ed., 2020).  Bergman is a co-author of the widely-used law school evidence textbook Evidence Law and Practice (with Friedland and Benham) (6th ed., 2014; 7th ed. 2018). Bergman is also a co-author of Cracking the Case Method- Legal Analysis for Law School Success (with Goodman and Holm) (2nd ed. 2018). And, with Professor Michael Asimow, he has written about popular culture, movies, and the law in Reel Justice: The Courtroom Goes to the Movies (2nd ed., 2006). Each edition of Reel Justice has been published in China in a Chinese language edition.

Along with Rabbi Mark Borovitz, Paul has also written You Matter- Ten Spiritual Commitments for a Richer and More Meaningful Life (2018).


  • Books
    • Real to Reel: Truth and Trickery in Courtroom Movies (with Michael Asimow). Vandeplas Publishing (2021). Book Info
    • Represent Yourself in Court (with Sara Berman-Barrett). 9th ed. Nolo Press (2019).
    • The Criminal Law Handbook (with Sara Berman-Barrett). 16th ed. Nolo Press (2019).
    • Evidence Law & Practice (with Friedland and Benham). 7th ed. LexisNexis (2019).
    • Lawyers as Counselors: A Client Centered Approach (with David A. Binder, Paul Tremblay, and Ian Weinstein). 4th ed. West Publishing (2019).
    • Criminal Law: A Desk Reference. 4th ed. Nolo Press (2019).
    • Nolo's Deposition Handbook (with Albert J. Moore). 7th ed. Nolo Press (2018).
    • Cracking the Case Method: Legal Analysis for Law School Success (with Patrick Goodman and Thomas Holm). 2nd ed. West Academic (2018).
    • You Matter: Ten Spiritual Commitments for a Richer and More Meaningful Life (co-authored with Rabbi Mark Borovitz, 2018).
    • Trial Advocacy in a Nutshell. 6th ed. West Publishing (2016).
    • Depositions in a Nutshell (with Albert J. Moore, David A. Binder and Jason Light). West Academic (2016).
    • Reel Justice: The Courtroom Goes to the Movies (with Michael Asimow). 2nd ed. Andrews and McMeel (2006). Translated as Ying xiang zhong de zheng yi: cong dian ying gu shi kan mei guo fa lü wen hua (Haikou Shi: Hainan chu ban she, 2003). First edition: 1996.
    • Deposition Questioning: Strategies and Techniques (with David Binder & Albert Moore). West (2001).
    • Trial Advocacy: Inferences, Arguments and Techniques (with David A. Binder and Albert J. Moore). West Publishing (1996).
    • Transcript Exercises for Learning Evidence. West Publishing (1992).
    • Fact Investigation: From Hypothesis to Proof (with David A. Binder). West Publishing (1984).
  • Articles And Chapters
    • Academic “Clip Joints”: Using Pop Culture to Enrich an Evidence Course, in The Media Method: Teaching Law with Popular Culture, (edited by Christine Corcos, Carolina Academic Press, 2019).
    • Guilt or Innocence: Lessons About the Legal Process in American Courtroom Films, in Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Oxford Encyclopedia of Crime, Media, and Popular Culture, (edited by Michelle Brown, Oxford University Press, 2018).
    • Rumpole’s Ethics, 1 Berkeley Journal of Entertainment and Sports Law 117 (2012). Full Text
    • A Third Rapist? Television Portrayals of Rape Evidence Rules, in Law and Justice on the Small Screen, (edited by P. Robson and J. Silbey, Hart Publishing, 2012).
    • Hello Mr Chips, 2011 (86) Amicus Curiae 3-6 (2011). Full Text
    • Rumpole and the Bowl of Comfort Food, in Lawyers in Your Living Room! Law on Television, (edited by Michael Asimow, ABA Press, 2009).
    • I Am Going With a Man by the Name of Hillmon (with Marianne Wesson), in Trial Stories, (edited by Michael Tigar and Angela Jordan Davis, Thomson-West, 2008).
    • Emergency! Send a TV Show to Rescue Paramedic Services, 36 University of Baltimore Law Review 347-69 (2007). Earlier draft appeared in 7 Current Legal Issues (Law and Popular Culture) 130-147 (2005). (The article was named "one of the best articles in the fields of entertainment, publishing, and the arts of 2007" and has been separately published in the Entertainment, Publishing and the Arts Handbook 2008-2009).
    • A Depositions Course: Tackling the Challenge of Teaching for Professional Skills Transfer (with David A. Binder and Albert J. Moore), 13 Clinical Law Review 871-98 (2007).
    • Book Review, "Law and Justice as Seen on TV", 55 Journal of Legal Education 268-70 (2005).
    • The Movie Lawyers' Guide to Redemptive Law Practice, in The Movie Lawyers' Guide to Redemptive Law Practice, (edited by Susan D. Carle, NYU Press, 2005). first appeared in 48 UCLA Law Review 1393 (2001).
    • Reflections on U.S. Clinical Education, 10 International Journal of the Legal Profession 109 (2003).
    • Taking Lawyering Skills Training Seriously (with David A. Binder), 10 Clinical Law Review 191 (2003). Full Text
    • Teaching Evidence the “Reel Way”, 21 Quinnipiac Law Review 973-92 (2003).
    • A Lawyering Skills Approach to Clinical Education, 36 Comparative Law Review 247 (2002). (In Japanese).
    • Communicating Implausibilities During Cross Examination (with Albert J. Moore), 3 American Journal of Trial Advocacy 171-88 (2000).
    • A Bunch of Circumstantial Evidence, 30 University of San Francisco Law Review 985-90 (1996).
    • Pranks for the Memory, 30 University of San Francisco Law Review 1235-47 (1996).
    • Reel Practice: Tinseltown's Best and Worst Trial Scenes (with Michael R. Asimow), 16 California Lawyer 38-41 (1996).
    • Is That a Fact? Argument in Problem-Solving Negotiations, 1 International Journal of the Legal Profession 81-95 (1994).
    • 2010: A Clinical Odyssey, 1992 Brigham Young University Law Review 349-61 (1992).
    • Admonishing Jurors to Disregard What They Haven't Heard, 25 Loyola of Los Angeles Law Review 689-98 (1992).
    • Mistrial by Likelihood Ratio: Bayesian Analysis Meets the F-Word (with Albert J. Moore), 13 Cardozo Law Review 589-619 (1991).
    • Of Bentham, Wigmore and Little Bo Peep: Where Evidence Lost Its Way, and a Map for Scholars to Find It, 66 Notre Dame Law Review 949-964 (1991).
    • Lawyers as Counselors: A Client Centered Approach (with David A. Binder and Susan Price), 35 New York Law School Law Review 29-86 (1990).
    • Richard S. Jacobson Award Speech, 22 Beverly Hills Bar Association Journal 308 (1988).
    • Ambiguity: The Hidden Hearsay Danger Almost Nobody Talks About, 75 Kentucky Law Journal 841-83 (1987).
    • Learning from Experience: Nonlegally-Specific Role Plays (with Avrom Sherr and Roger Burridge), 37 Journal of Legal Education 535-53 (1987).
    • The War Between the States (of Mind): Oral Versus Textual Reasoning, 40 Arkansas Law Review 505-44 (1987). Also appeared in 37 Law Review Digest 32-33 (1988) and in 11 UCLA Law School Magazine 5-9 (1987).
    • Games Law Teachers Play (with Avrom Sherr and Roger Burridge), 20 The Law Teacher 21-35 (1986).
    • Class Action Lawyers: Fools for Clients?, 4 American Journal of Trial Advocacy 243-75 (1980).
    • The Consumer Protection Clinical Course at UCLA School of Law, 29 Journal of Legal Education 352-69 (1978).
    • A Practical Approach to Cross Examination: Safety First, 25 UCLA Law Review 547-76 (1978).
    • Teaching the Essence of the American System of Law and Justice, 16 Social Studies Review 51-7 (1977).
  • Other
    • Favorite Cross Examinations, 104 ABA Journal (Aug. 2018).
    • Blogsite: The Rap Sheet.
    • The Film: Anatomy of a Murder. The Lesson: Chronology Can Be the Key to Breaking Down a Witness' Story on Cross, 94 ABA Journal 51 (August 2008).
    • The Mirror Has Two Faces (with Michael Asimow), 20 Los Angeles Lawyer 76 (April 1997).
    • Book Review, 66 Notre Dame Law Review 949-64 (1991). Reviewing Rethinking Evidence, by William L. Twining.
    • Review of Lowenthal, "A General Theory of Negotiation Process, Strategy, and Behavior", 31 University of Kansas Law Review (1982). In ABA Clinical Section Newsletter, 2 pp. (1983).

Courses Available