David J. Leibson

Bernard Flexner Professor of Law

David J. Leibson's picture
David J. Leibson received his B.A. degree from Vanderbilt University, cum laude, and his J.D. from the University of Louisville Brandeis School of Law, graduating first in his class. He has an LL.M. from Harvard University. Professor Leibson came to the law faculty in 1971 as an adjunct instructor and accepted a full-time position in 1972. He has been a full professor since 1977 and the Bernard Flexner Professor of Law since 1989.

Professor Leibson teaches and writes in the areas of torts and the Uniform Commercial Code. He co-authored The Uniform Commercial Code of Kentucky with his colleague, Professor Richard Nowka. This book was originally published in 1983, and supplemented in 1987 and 1991. In 1992, a second edition was published, and a third edition was completed in 2003. The book has been cited in many Kentucky Court of Appeals and Supreme Court opinions. Professor Leibson is also the co-author of The Perfect Repossession Checklist and the author of Kentucky Tort Law, which is a part of West Publishing Company's Kentucky Practice series.

Professor Leibson has written several articles which have been cited in appellate court opinions and course textbooks. He has been honored with outstanding teaching awards including the 1988-89 Law Alumni Foundation Teaching Excellence Award, and as a Distinguished Alumnus of the law school.

Professor Leibson has been a visiting Professor of Law at McGeorge School of Law and the University of Leeds, England, and the University of Western Sydney, Australia.

Courses Taught


Business Torts

Civil Procedure

Commercial Paper under the Uniform Commercial Code

Consumer Transactions (developed and introduced this course into the curriculum)

Domestic Relations

Law and Literature (developed and introduced this course into the curriculum)

Sales and Leases under the Uniform Commercial Code and the Convention on the International Sale of Goods

Secured Transactions under the Uniform Commercial Code

Seminar on the Legal Profession




Kentucky Tort Law, West Publishing Co., (1995), yearly supplements 1996-2008. A Second Edition of this book will be published in late 2008 or early 2009

The Uniform Commercial Code of Kentucky, 3d Edition (with Nowka)(2003)

The Perfect Repossession Checklist (with Mapother), Creditors Law Center, (1990).


"Debtor's Rights in the Collateral--Dangerous Territory for 'Owners' and Secured Parties," UCC Bulletin, July, 1992.

"Handling Re-Presented Checks--Risky Business for Collecting and Payor Banks," 78 Kentucky Law Journal 549 (1984).

"Recovery of Damages for Emotional Distress Caused by Physical Injury to Another," 15 Journal of Family Law 163 (1976-77).

"Wrongful Dishonor Under the UCC--A Trip Through the Maze of 4‑402," 8 Akron L.Rev. 317 (1976).

"Anticipatory Repudiation and Buyer's Damages--A Look into How the UCC Has Changed the Common Law," 7 UCC L.J. 272 (Winter, 1975).


Over the years Professor Leibson has given numerous speeches on the Uniform Commercial Code at continuing legal education seminars sponsored by the Louisville Bar Association, Commercial Law League, Kentucky Bankers Association, and the School of Law. He has also given presentations and been a panel participant in tort related CLE programs. In the last few years Leibson has also facilitated Law and Literature CLE programs for the Louisville Bar Association.

University and Community Service


Admissions Committee

Alumni Relations Committee

Committee to draft Procedures and Guidelines for Promotion and Tenure

Curriculum Committee (chair, 1977-78, 1989-90)

Dean's Search Committee (1989-90, 1999)

Decanal Review Committee

Diversity Issues Committee (co-chair 1994-95; chair 1995-97)

Economic Welfare Committee (chair, 1983-84)

Committee on Professionalism and Public Service

Various search committees for assistant deans and librarians

Awards Committee (chair for a number of years)

Numerous ad hoc committees


Senate Committee on Professionalism

Committee on Allocation of Resources

Advisory Committee on Research

Final Committee to Select Grawemeyer Award in Religion, 1997, 1998

Mortar Board Fellowship Selection Committee

Committee to Select Distinguished University Teaching Award

Facilitator in the great Studies Program which involves local community leaders in seminars. The purpose is to discuss great literature and its impact on the profession of the participants.



Volunteer, Reach Out and Roar, community project to tutor disadvantaged students in reading, 1998-1999

Member, Board of Directors, Jewish Community Federation, 1998-2003.

Member, Public Radio Partnership Board, 2003--2005

Co-Chair, Long Range Planning Committee for Fundraising, Jewish Community Federation, 1998-2001.

Member, Emotionally Stable Families Community Investment Team, Metro United Way, 1997-2003.

President, Jewish Community Center, a Metro United Way Agency, May 1988‑‑May 1990.

Member, Board of Directors and Executive Board of the Jewish Community Center for many years.

Chairman and Member, Development Committee of the Jewish Community Center, 1994‑present.

Member, Board of Directors, Jewish Hospital Heart-Lung Institute, 1990-1997.

Member, Resettlement Committee of the Jewish Community Federation, 1994-present.

Member, Board of Directors, The Temple, June 1995- 1997.

Volunteer, Kentucky Harvest.

Interviewer, Survivors of the Shoa, Visual History Project. This is Steven Spielberg's project to interview all living survivors of the Holocaust and make the interviews available for historical research and education.

Member, Executive Committee of the Community Relations Council of the Jewish Community Federation, 2004-present

Member, Community Relations Council of the Jewish Community Federation, 2000-present


Advisor, Special Legislative Committee considering amendments to the Uniform Commercial Code of Kentucky.

Participant, Continuing Legal Education Seminars (see presentations)

Member, Board of Directors of the Louisville Bar Foundation, 1996-97 (Dean's Designate)


Phi Kappa Psi Honorary Fraternity

Brandeis Honor Society, 1983 inductee as a first in class graduate in 1969

Brandeis Honor Society recognition for outstanding legal scholarship--1996-97

Recipient of the Red Apple Award given by the University of Louisville for outstanding teaching and service. This is an award given pursuant to nomination by former students.