Nina Varsava

Assistant Professor of Law

Varsava, Nina

Room 8105, Law School

PDF Icon Curriculum Vitae


J.D., Yale Law School
Ph.D, Stanford University
M.A., University of British Columbia
B.A., University of Alberta


Professor Varsava’s research areas include civil procedure, courts and judicial decisionmaking, and ethics and professional responsibility in the legal and medical contexts. She employs both philosophical and empirical methods to study these topics.

Professor Varsava has published her research in law reviews and peer-reviewed journals, and has also published in non-academic venues such as SLATE and Colorado Lawyer. Her scholarship has been discussed in media outlets including the The New York Times and the American Bar Association Journal.

She has also co-written amicus briefs in cases concerning professional responsibility, and has advised clients on professional responsibility issues in legal practice, health care, and clinical research. Following law school, Professor Varsava served as a Judicial Law Clerk for the Supreme Court of Colorado.

In her spare time, Professor Varsava enjoys climbing rocks, cliffs, and walls.

Scholarship & Publications


Law Repository

Research Interests

  • Legal Theory
  • Procedural Justice
  • Law and Language
  • Judges and Courts
  • Legal Ethics
  • Bioethics and Health Law


  • Nina Varsava presented "Consent and the Duty to Return Results in Human Subjects Research" for the Virtual Health Law and Bioethics Workshop in July 2020.

  • Nina Varsava's article, "Allocating Authority between Lawyers and their Clients after McCoy v. Louisiana," was published in the Spring 2020 edition of New Criminal Law Review.

  • Nina Varsava presented "What Judicial Opinions can tell us about the Gender Roles and Biases of Judges" for the Law & Society Association Annual Meeting in May 2020. The paper presents empirical evidence of judge gender roles and biases on the federal courts of appeals.

  • Nina Varsava presented "Interjurisdictional Interpretation" at the Michigan Junior Scholars Conference, which was presented by the University of Michigan Law School in April 2020.

  • Nina Varsava's article, "Human Subjects Research Without Consent: Duties to Return Individual Findings When Participation was Non-Consensual," was published in The American Journal of Bioethics in January 2020.

  • Nina Varsava presented two talks at the 2020 AALS Annual Meeting, held in Washington, D.C., in January. For the Law as Data session, she presented "What Can Judicial Opinions (and Computational Legal Studies) Tell Us about the Gender Roles of Judges?," and for the Law and Interpretation session, she presented "Do Interpretive Rules 'Exceed the Limits of Stare Decisis?'"

  • Alexandra Huneeus, Mitra Sharafi and Nina Varsava were selected for honorary membership into the Order of the Coif, a scholastic society that encourages excellence in legal education. Sixteen recent UW Law graduates also received Order of the Coif honors for 2019.

  • Nina Varsava's article, "The Role of Dissents in the Formation of Precedent," appears in the Summer 2019 volume of the Duke Journal of Constitutional Law & Public Policy. The paper makes the case that dissenting opinions can create binding law.

Teaching Areas

  • Civil Procedure
  • Conflict of Laws
  • Ethics & Professional Responsibilities
  • Federal Jurisdiction
  • Health Law
  • Jurisprudence

Recently Taught Courses

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