When John C. McCoid, II retired from the University of Virginia School of Law after 36 years in 1994, he noted: “I can’t imagine – after having been here – wanting to go anywhere else.” McCoid received his B.A. in 1950 and LL.B. in 1953 from Vanderbilt University, where he was editor-in-chief of the Vanderbilt Law Review and a Founder's Medalist. He then served as an intelligence officer in the U.S. Navy before joining the Virginia Law faculty in 1957. During his tenure at Virginia, McCoid wrote numerous law review articles and an influential civil procedure casebook, Civil Procedure Cases and Materials (1974). Among the many courses he taught were Bankruptcy, Civil Procedure, Conflicts of Law, Insurance, and Legal Ethics. He became the Armistead M. Dobie Professor in 1970 and the O.M. Vicars Professor in 1987, and was the Hunton & Williams Research Professor in 1990-92.
McCoid relied upon the Socratic method not only in the classroom, but with his colleagues, working through questions and cases rather than relying upon rules. As his colleague George Rutherglen wrote, “It is rare to find a law professor as interested as John in discovering what the limits of any general statement about the law might be.” This approach earned him the respect of law faculty and students throughout his teaching career. A dozen members of the class of 1971 surprised McCoid by showing up at the last class he taught at Virginia Law. As former student and fellow faculty member Earl C. Dudley put it: “John McCoid walked a wonderful tightrope between gentle decency and bracing intellectual challenge. He was not called ‘The Cobra’ for nothing.”
McCoid's notebooks from his law study at Vanderbilt University are available in Special Collections.
Civil Procedure: Cases and Materials (West, 1974).
The Annual Survey of Virginia Law: Insurance, 46 Va. L. Rev. 1517-1523 (1960); 47 Va. L. Rev. 1296-1302 (1961); 48 Va. L. Rev. 1354-1362 (1962); 49 Va. L. Rev. 1614-1621 (1963); 50 Va. L. Rev. 1476-1487 (1964); 51 Va. L. Rev. 1432-1444 (1965).
Recovery of Consequential Damages in Eminent Domain (with Emerson G. Spies), 48 Va. L. Rev. 437-458 (1962).
Allocation of Loss and Property Insurance, 39 Ind. L.J. 647-674 (1964).
Hanna v. Plumer: The Erie Doctrine Changes Shape, 51 Va. L. Rev. 884-915 (1965).
Procedural Reform and the Right to Jury Trial: A Study of Beacon Theatres, Inc. v. Westover, 116 U. Pa. L. Rev. 1-24 (1967).
Right to Jury Trial in the Federal Courts, 45 Iowa L. Rev. 726-742 (1960).
A Single Package for Multiparty Disputes, 28 Stan. L. Rev. 707-728 (1976).
Bankruptcy, Preferences, and Efficiency: An Expression of Doubt, 67 Va. L. Rev. 249-273 (1981).
Chapter 11 Plans: The Law and its Theory, in Bankruptcy – Recent Developments and Reorganization of Businesses under Chapter 11, at V-1 to V-6 (Virginia Law Foundation, 1982).
Constructively Fraudulent Conveyances: Transfers for Inadequate Consideration, 62 Tex. L. Rev. 639-664 (1983).
Bankruptcy, the Avoiding Powers, and Unperfected Security Interests, 59 Am. Bankr. L.J. 175-193 (1985).
The Common Ground – Provisions Applicable in All Cases, in Fundamentals of Bankruptcy: Substance and Procedure II-1 to II-19 (Virginia Law Foundation, 1987).
The Occasion for Involuntary Bankruptcy, 61 Am. Bankr. L.J. 195-218 (1987).
The Origins of Voluntary Bankruptcy, 5 Bankr. Dev. J. 361-389 (1988).
Setoff: Why Bankruptcy Priority? 75 Va. L. Rev. 15-43 (1989).
Moore v. Bay: An Exercise in Choice of Law, 1990 Ann. Surv. Bankr. L. 157-191.
Inconsistent Judgments, 48 Wash. & Lee L. Rev. 487-514 (1991).
Preservation of Avoided Transfers and Liens, 77 Va. L. Rev. 1091-1126 (1991).
Right to Jury Trial in Bankruptcy: Granfinanciera, S.A. v. Nordberg, 65 Am. Bankr. L.J. 15-41 (1991).
Corporate Preferences to Insiders, 43 S.C. L. Rev. 805-839 (1992).
Pendency Interest in Bankruptcy, 68 Am. Bankr. L.J. 1-21 (1994).
Statutory Liens in Bankruptcy, 68 Am. Bankr. L.J. 269-294 (1994).
Discharge: The Most Important Development in Bankruptcy History, 70 Am. Bankr. L.J. 163-193 (1996).
Review of Edwards, The Price Discrimination Law, 15 Reading Guide 23-24 (1960).
Securities Litigation (with Michael P. Dooley), Va. L. Sch. Rep., Summer 1979, at 5-7.