Michael B. Mushlin

  • Professor of Law Emeritus
Assistant: Taylor Quinn
Preston Hall 201-207
(914) 422-4194


BA, Vanderbilt University
JD, Northwestern University

For media inquiries, contact:

Rachael Silva
Assistant Dean for External Affairs
(914) 422-4354

Professor Michael B. Mushlin teaches Civil Procedure, Evidence, and Prisoners' Rights. Before becoming a law professor he was a civil rights lawyer specializing in federal civil rights class action seeking systemic reform.  He is the author of book chapters, and articles on a variety of subjects involving evidence, federal jurisdiction, civil procedure, children's rights, and prisoners' rights that have appeared in journals such as the Yale Law and Policy ReviewUCLA Law ReviewHarvard Civil Rights Civil Liberties Law ReviewThe Journal of Legal Education, Brooklyn Law Review, and the Fordham Urban Law Journal. He also is the author of RIGHTS OF PRISONERS (5th ed West) a four volume comprehensive treatise on the law regarding prisoners' rights and NEW YORK EVIDENCE WITH OBJECTIONS (5th ed National Institute of Trial Advocacy 2013) (with Lissa Griffin & Jo Ann Harris).

Professor Mushlin was a member of the Task Force on the Legal Status of Prisoners of the American Bar Association. The Task Force promulgated a set of standards govering the operation of prisoners and the rights of prisoners which was adopted and the American Bar Association. He also served as co-chair of the Subcommittee on Implementation of the ABA Resolution on Prison Oversight. He is a member of the New York Advisory Committee on Criminal Law and Procedure of the Office of Court Administration.  Professor Mushlin is served as Chair of the Committee on Corrections of the New York City Bar where he led an investigation into conditions in New York’s Death Row.  He is former Chair of the Board of the Correctional Association and the Osborne Association. He is a member of the Editorial Board of the Correctional Law Reporter. Professor Mushlin also served on the boards of Children's Rights Inc. and Pace Law School's John Jay Legal Services Inc. Professor Mushlin has spoken widely on a variety of topics. He was honored by a Resolution of the Texas House of Representatives for his work together with Prof. Michele Deitch in organizing a national conference that focused on the oversight of U.S. prisons and jails. The resolution commended him and Prof. Deitch for stimulating dialogue and debate that would “lead to significant reforms within the U.S. criminal justice system.”  Professor Mushlin was selected to be a member of the Executive Committee of the New York City Bar Association, and was elected Secretary of the Executive Committee.

Professor Mushlin was appointed Charles A. Frueauff Research Professor of Law during the 1991-1992 academic year, and James D. Hopkins Chair in Law during the 2005-2007 academic years at Pace Law School. He served as Associate Dean of Academic Affairs for seven years. 

Prof. Mushlin received his J.D. cum laude, from Northwestern University School of Law. Professor Mushlin practiced as a public interest and civil rights lawyer for 15 years as staff attorney with Harlem Assertion of Rights, Inc., as staff attorney and Project Director of the Prisoners' Rights Project of the Legal Aid Society, and as Associate Director of the Children's Rights Project of the American Civil Liberties Union.

Professor Mushlin’s life and distinguished career were featured in a series of oral history videos published by the Civil Rights Clearing House in 2023.




RIGHTS OF PRISONERS (4th ed West 2009/2010) (four volume comprehensive treatise on the law regarding prisoners' rights) (Annual Supplements published. Latest for 2014-2015 forthcoming October 2014).

NEW YORK EVIDENCE WITH OBJECTIONS (4th ed National Institute of Trial Advocacy 2013) (with Jo Ann Harris).

Book Chapters:

"Correctional Health Care and Special Populations--Legal Considerations and Context" in Managing Special Populations in Jails and Prisons, Volume II, (Stand Stojkovic ed) (Civil Research Institute 2010).

"Legal Rights of Prisoners," Encyclopedia of Crime and Justice, 2nd ed. Joshua Dressler, ed. 2002.

Practice Commentaries for Article 1 of the CPLR, in New York Civil Practice (Jack Weinstein, et al. eds.) (2005).


"The Professor and the Judge: Introducing First- Year Students to the Law in Context," (with Hon. Lisa M. Smith) 63 J. Legal Educ. 460 (2014).

"Unlocking the Courthouse Door: Removing the Barrier of the PLRA’s Physical Injury Requirement to Permit Meaningful Judicial Oversight of Abuses in Supermax Prisons and Isolation Units," 24 Federal Sentencing Reporter 268 (2012).

"Williams v. Hobbs: A Welcome Deviation," 23 Correctional Law Reporter 92 (April/May 2012).

"Let the Sunshine In: The ABA and Prison Oversight," (with Michele Deitch) 2011 American Bar Association: The State Of Criminal Justice 242 (The American Bar Association, Criminal Justice Section 2011).

"Foreword: Opening a Closed World: What Constitutes Effective Prison Oversight," 30 Pace Law Review 1383 (2010) (with Michele Deitch).

"From White Plains to Austin: The Road from the Prison Reform Revisited Conference to the Opening Up A Closed World Conference," 30 Pace Law Review 1430 (2010).

"Bound and Gagged: The Peculiar Predicament of Professional Jurors," 25 Yale Law and Policy Review 239 (2007).

"The Impact of the Surge of Immigration Appeals to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals" (Report of the Federal Courts Committee of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York) (with David Arroya, Lynn Kelly, and Ellen Unger) (2004).

"Foreword: Prison Reform Revisited: The Unfinished Agenda," 24 Pace Law Review 395 (2004).

"Dying Twice: Incarceration on Death Row," 31 Capital University Law Review 853 (with Joe Ingle, Russell Stetler and Craig Haney) (2003).

"Dying Twice: Conditions on New York’s Death Row," 22 Pace Law Review 347 (2002) (with David Hammer, Art Cody, Risa Gerson, Norman Green, and Richard Wolf).

"Unsafe Havens: The Case for the Constitutional Protection of Foster Children from Abuse and Neglect," 23 Harvard Civil Rights - Civil Liberties Law Review 199 (1988). Adapted and published as Chapter Eleven of Child, Parent, and State: Law and Policy Reader, S. Randall Humm, et. al. editors. Philadelphia: Temple Univ. Press, 1994.

"The New Quasi In Rem Jurisdiction: New York's Revival of a Doctrine Whose Time Has Passed," 55 Brooklyn Law Review 1059 (1990).

"Foreword. Gideon v. Wainwright Revisited: What Does the Right to Counsel Guarantee Today?" 10 Pace Law Review 327 (1990).

"History Comes Calling: Dean Griswold Offers New Evidence About the Jurisdictional Debate Surrounding the Enactment of the Declaratory Judgment Act," with Donald L. Doernberg, 37 University of California - Los Angeles Law Review 139 (1989).

"The Trojan Horse: How the Declaratory Judgment Act Created a Course of Action and Expanded Federal Jurisdiction While the Supreme Court Wasn't Looking," with Donald Doernberg, 36 UCLA Law Review 529 (1989).

"Rhodes v. Chapman Analyzed for Effect on Prison Overcrowding," 14 Journal of National Prison Project 4 (1987).

"The Proposed Transfer of Rikers Island to New York State," 35 The Record of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York 227 (April 1980) (unattributed author).

"Court-Ordered Foster Family Care Reform: A Case Study," with Louis Levitt and Lauren Anderson, 65 Child Welfare 141 (March-April 1986).