Master Legal Skills Professor
Deborah Cupples is a Master Legal Skills Professor at the University of Florida’s Levin College of Law, where she teaches legal drafting. She has also taught courses in statutory interpretation and drafting, constitutional interpretation and revision (Florida), and art law. Her expertise lies in legal-document drafting (primarily contracts and legislation) and contract negotiation.
She has co-authored two books: one on legal drafting and one on grammar and style for lawyers. Prior to joining the UF Law faculty in 2008, Cupples worked as an attorney in private practice. She served on the board of the Eighth Judicial Circuit Bar Association from 2008 to 2012. She continues to do pro-bono work through the Southern Legal Counsel and to work as a legal consultant.
She earned her B.A., M.A., and J.D. degrees all from the University of Florida, where she served as Managing Editor of the Florida Law Review.
J.D., University of Florida
M.A., University of Florida
B.A., University of Florida
Teaching and Scholarship
Legal document drafting (litigation documents, contracts, and legislation); contract negotiation; Florida constitutional interpretation; legislative interpretation; and art law.
- University of Florida Levin College of Law: began teaching Legal Drafting as an adjunct (2006), joined faculty as Legal Skills Professor (2008); promoted to Senior Legal Skills Professor (2011).
- Legal Practice: Rural Health Partnership of North Central Florida, Legal Consultant (2009-pres.); Southern Legal Counsel, pro-bono (2009-2014); F. Parker Lawrence, P.A., Attorney (2006-08).
- Memberships: Florida Bar (2006-pres.); Eighth Judicial Circuit Bar Association, Member (2007-pres.) and Board Member (2007-2011); Legal Writing Institute, Member (2013-pres.).
- This required course must be taken in the second year and be completed with a passing grade. Principles and practice of drafting legal documents, including complaints and responses, contracts, and legislative and quasi-legislative documents.
- This course is a seminar on the law specially concerning art and cultural property. The focus is broad and international. The topic crosses all fields of law, criminal and civil, domestic and international, contemporary and historical, commercial, administrative, private and public.
- This asynchronous online course focuses on grammar, punctuation, and style (using law-related materials). The objective is to give students the opportunity to learn to generate text, identify problems in their writing, and to evaluate and edit their writing.
- Deborah Cupples, It Is About You: How American Government Works and How to Help Fix It (Deflinium, 2017)
- Deborah Cupples and Margaret Temple-Smith, Grammar, Punctuation, & Style: A Quick Guide for Lawyers and Other Writers (West, 2013)
- Margaret Temple-Smith and Deborah Cupples, Legal Drafting: Litigation Documents, Contracts, Legislation, and Wills (West, 2012)