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Full-Text Articles in Law

The Moral Ambiguity Of Public Prosecution, Gabriel S. Mendlow Mar 2021

The Moral Ambiguity Of Public Prosecution, Gabriel S. Mendlow

Articles

Classic crimes like theft and assault are in the first instance wrongs against individuals, not against the state or the polity that it represents. Yet our legal system denies crime victims the right to initiate or intervene in the criminal process, relegating them to the roles of witness or bystander—even as the system treats prosecution as an institutional analog of the interpersonal processes of moral blame and accountability, which give pride of place to those most directly wronged. Public prosecution reigns supreme, with the state claiming primary and exclusive moral standing to call offenders to account for their wrongs ...


Antitrust Antitextualism, Daniel A. Crane Mar 2021

Antitrust Antitextualism, Daniel A. Crane

Articles

Judges and scholars frequently describe antitrust as a common-law system predicated on open-textured statutes, but that description fails to capture a historically persistent phenomenon:judicial disregard of the plain meaning of the statutory texts and manifest purposes of Congress. This pattern of judicial nullification is not evenly distributed: when the courts have deviated from the plain meaning or congressional purpose, they have uniformly done so to limit the reach of antitrust liability or curtail the labor exemption to the benefit of industrial interests. This phenomenon cannot be explained solely or even primarily as a tug-of-war between a progressive Congress and ...


The Liar’S Mark: Character And Forfeiture In Federal Rule Of Evidence 609(A)(2), Jesse Schupack Mar 2021

The Liar’S Mark: Character And Forfeiture In Federal Rule Of Evidence 609(A)(2), Jesse Schupack

Michigan Law Review

Rule 609(a)(2) of the Federal Rules of Evidence is an outlier. The Rule mandates admission of impeaching evidence of a witness’s past convictions for crimes of dishonesty. It is the only place in the Rules where judges are denied their usual discretion to exclude evidence on the grounds that its admission would be more prejudicial than probative. This Note analyzes three assumptions underlying this unusual Rule: (1) that there is a coherently definable category of crimes of dishonesty, (2) that convictions for crimes of dishonesty are uniquely probative of a person’s character, and (3) that an ...


The Doctrine Of Clarifications, Pat Mcdonell Feb 2021

The Doctrine Of Clarifications, Pat Mcdonell

Michigan Law Review

Clarifications are a longstanding but little-studied concept in statutory interpretation. Most courts have found that clarifying amendments to preexisting statutes bypass retroactivity limitations. Therein lies their power. Because clarifications simply restate the law, they do not implicate the presumption against retroactivity that Landgraf v. USI Film Products embedded in civil-statute interpretation. The problem that courts have yet to address is how exactly clarifying legislation can be distinguished from legislation that substantively changes the law. What exactly is a clarification? The courts’ answers implicate many of the entrenched debates in statutory interpretation. This Note offers three primary contributions. First, it summarizes ...


Designing Legal Experiences, Maximilian A. Bulinski, J.J. Prescott Feb 2021

Designing Legal Experiences, Maximilian A. Bulinski, J.J. Prescott

Book Chapters

Technological advancements are improving how courts operate by changing the way they handle proceedings and interact with litigants. Court Innovations is a socially minded software startup that enables citizens, law enforcement, and courts to resolve legal matters through Matterhorn, an online communication and dispute resolution platform. Matterhorn was conceived at the University of Michigan Law School and successfully piloted in two Michigan district courts beginning in 2014. The platform now operates in over 40 courts and in at least eight states, and it has facilitated the resolution of more than 40,000 cases to date. These numbers will continue to ...


Clashing Canons And The Contract Clause, T. Leigh Anenson, Jennifer K. Gershberg Jan 2021

Clashing Canons And The Contract Clause, T. Leigh Anenson, Jennifer K. Gershberg

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

This Article is the first in-depth examination of substantive canons that judges use to interpret public pension legislation under the Contract Clause of the U.S. Constitution and state constitutions. The resolution of constitutional controversies concerning pension reform will have a profound influence on government employment. The assessment begins with a general discussion of these interpretive techniques before turning to their operation in public pension litigation. It concentrates on three clashing canons: the remedial (purpose) canon, the “no contract” canon (otherwise known as the unmistakability doctrine), and the constitutional avoidance canon. For these three canons routinely employed in pension law ...


Politics, Identity, And Class Certification On The U.S. Courts Of Appeals, Stephen B. Burbank, Sean Farhang Nov 2020

Politics, Identity, And Class Certification On The U.S. Courts Of Appeals, Stephen B. Burbank, Sean Farhang

Michigan Law Review

This Article draws on novel data and presents the results of the first empirical analysis of how potentially salient characteristics of Court of Appeals judges influence class certification under Rule 23 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. We find that the ideological composition of the panel (measured by the party of the appointing president) has a very strong association with certification outcomes, with all-Democratic panels having dramatically higher rates of procertification outcomes than all-Republican panels—nearly triple in about the past twenty years. We also find that the presence of one African American on a panel, and the presence ...


Possible Reliance: Protecting Legally Innocent Johnson Claimants, Keagan Potts Nov 2020

Possible Reliance: Protecting Legally Innocent Johnson Claimants, Keagan Potts

Michigan Law Review

The writ of habeas corpus presents the last chance for innocent defendants to obtain relief from invalid convictions and sentences. The writ constitutes a limited exception to the finality of judgments. Given the role finality plays in conserving judicial resources and deterring criminal conduct, exceptions created by habeas must be principally circumscribed. Since the Supreme Court’s invalidation of the Armed Career Criminal Act’s residual clause in Johnson v. United States, the federal courts of appeals have attempted to develop a test that protects the writ from abuse by Johnson claimants.

This Note first contributes a new understanding of ...


On Sexual Harassment In The Judiciary, Leah Litman, Deeva Shah Oct 2020

On Sexual Harassment In The Judiciary, Leah Litman, Deeva Shah

Articles

This Essay examines the legal profession’s role in sexual harassment, particularly in the federal courts. It argues that individuals in the profession have both an individual and collective responsibility for the professional norms that have allowed harassment to happen with little recourse for the people subject to the harassment. It suggests that the legal profession should engage in a sustained, public reflection about how our words, actions, attitudes, and institutional arrangements allow harassment to happen, and about the many different ways that we can prevent and address harassment.


Mapping The Iceberg: The Impact Of Data Sources On The Study Of District Courts, Christina L. Boyd, Pauline T. Kim, Margo Schlanger Aug 2020

Mapping The Iceberg: The Impact Of Data Sources On The Study Of District Courts, Christina L. Boyd, Pauline T. Kim, Margo Schlanger

Articles

Three decades ago, Siegelman and Donohue aptly characterized research about courts and litigation that relied only on published opinions as “studying the iceberg from its tip.” They implored researchers to view published district court opinions “with greater sensitivity to the ways in which such cases are unrepresentative of all cases”. The dynamic, multistage nature of trial court litigation makes a focus solely on published opinions particularly ill-suited to the study of federal district courts. Expanded electronic access to court documents now allows more pre-cise analysis of the ways in which published cases are unrepresentative and what differences that makes for ...


The "Directive" Prong: Adding To The Allied-Signal Framework For Remand Without Vacatur, T. Alex B. Folkerth Aug 2020

The "Directive" Prong: Adding To The Allied-Signal Framework For Remand Without Vacatur, T. Alex B. Folkerth

Michigan Journal of Environmental & Administrative Law

“Remand without vacatur” is an administrative law remedy that allows courts reviewing agency actions with minor legal defects to leave the action in place while the agency fixes the defect. Courts use a two-prong test from the 1993 D.C. Circuit case Allied-Signal, Inc. v. U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission to determine whether or not to vacate the action pending remand. Allied-Signal’s “deficiency” prong directs the court to consider how bad the defect is. The “disruption” prong directs the court to consider how much havoc will be wreaked by the vacation of the action while the agency is fixing ...


Increasing Case Traffic: Expanding The International Criminal Court's Focus On Human Trafficking Cases, Nadia Alhadi Aug 2020

Increasing Case Traffic: Expanding The International Criminal Court's Focus On Human Trafficking Cases, Nadia Alhadi

Michigan Journal of International Law

Human trafficking falls within the jurisdictional competence of the International Criminal Court (“ICC”) as one of the article 7 crimes against humanity, whether committed in an atmosphere of conflict or in times of relative peace. Despite the ICC’s jurisdiction, as well as the globally pervasive nature of peacetime trafficking in particular, the ICC has not yet heard a human trafficking case.

Accountability at the international level, however, is crucial, and the ICC’s oversight has the potential to fill gaps in the current anti-trafficking regime. This note explores this potential, and then examines whether the text of the Rome ...


Regulating Jurisdiction Collisions In International Law: The Case Of The European Court Of Justice's Exclusive Jurisdiction In Law Of The Sea Disputes, Darío Maestro Aug 2020

Regulating Jurisdiction Collisions In International Law: The Case Of The European Court Of Justice's Exclusive Jurisdiction In Law Of The Sea Disputes, Darío Maestro

Michigan Journal of International Law

To maximize their chances of receiving a favorable disposition, claimants often aspire to bring complex disputes to more than one international court. However, doing so may bring their claims under the jurisdiction of more than one branch of international law simultaneously, creating what this note calls a jurisdiction collision. This practice poses a challenge to the cohesion of international adjudication as competing international tribunals, relying on differing precedents, may give differing interpretations to the same rule.

Concentrating on the classical roots of international law and its changing significance over time and within different contexts, this note considers the benefits and ...


A Better Madden Fix: Holistic Reform, Not Band-Aids, To Modernize Banking Law, Matthew J. Razzano Jul 2020

A Better Madden Fix: Holistic Reform, Not Band-Aids, To Modernize Banking Law, Matthew J. Razzano

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform Caveat

Historically, state usury laws prohibited lending above certain interest rates, but in 1978 the Supreme Court interpreted the National Bank Act (NBA) to allow chartered banks to issue loans at rates based on where they were headquartered rather than where the loan originated. States like South Dakota virtually eliminated interest rate ceilings to attract business, incentivizing national banks to base credit operations there and avoid local usury laws. In 2015, however, the Second Circuit decided Madden v. Midland Funding, LLC and reversed long-standing banking practices, ruling that non-chartered financial institutions were not covered by the NBA and were therefore subject ...


Disaggregating Ineffective Assistance Of Counsel Doctrine: Four Forms Of Constitutional Ineffectiveness, Eve Brensike Primus Jun 2020

Disaggregating Ineffective Assistance Of Counsel Doctrine: Four Forms Of Constitutional Ineffectiveness, Eve Brensike Primus

Articles

For years, experts have blamed Strickland v. Washington’s lax standard for assessing trial attorney effectiveness for many of the criminal justice system’s problems. But the conventional understanding of Strickland as a problem for ineffectiveness claims gives the decision too much prominence because it treats Strickland as the test for all such claims. That is a mistake. Properly understood, the Supreme Court has recognized four different constitutional forms of trial attorney ineffectiveness, and Strickland’s two pronged test applies to only one of the four. If litigants and courts would notice this complexity and relegate Strickland to its proper ...


Fixing The Problem Of Incompetent Defense Counsel Before The International Criminal Court, Matthew Catallo Jun 2020

Fixing The Problem Of Incompetent Defense Counsel Before The International Criminal Court, Matthew Catallo

Michigan Journal of International Law

Throughout the latter half of the twentieth-century, defense counsel arguing before international criminal tribunals provided notoriously ineffective assistance. This note examines whether defense counsel similarly fail to provide competent assistance at the International Criminal Court––and if they do so for similar reasons. In examining the ICC’s procedural and regulatory framework, this note highlights the systemic inequities at the Court that favor the prosecution and devalue the defense, thereby hindering the acquisition of competent defense counsel and promoting the retention of incompetent defense counsel.

To address these iniquities, this note promotes various administrative reforms, all of which could be ...


The Right To A Well-Rested Jury, Caroline Howe May 2020

The Right To A Well-Rested Jury, Caroline Howe

Michigan Law Review

The vast amount of control that state trial judges exercise over the dynamics of their courtrooms is well established. The length of trial days and jury deliberations, however, has received little scholarly attention. Longstanding research has conclusively established the disruptive effects of sleep deprivation on many of the mental facilities necessary for juries to competently fulfill their duties. By depriving juries of sleep, trial judges may be compromising the fair rights of criminal defendants for the sake of efficiency. This Note argues that trial judges must use their discretion to ensure juries are well-rested, keeping jurors’ needs in mind. Further ...


For Cause: Rethinking Racial Exclusion And The American Jury, Thomas Ward Frampton Apr 2020

For Cause: Rethinking Racial Exclusion And The American Jury, Thomas Ward Frampton

Michigan Law Review

Peremptory strikes, and criticism of the permissive constitutional framework regulating them, have dominated the scholarship on race and the jury for the past several decades. But we have overlooked another important way in which the American jury reflects and reproduces racial hierarchies: massive racial disparities also pervade the use of challenges for cause. This Article examines challenges for cause and race in nearly 400 trials and, based on original archival research, presents a revisionist account of the Supreme Court’s three most recent Batson cases. It establishes that challenges for cause, no less than peremptory strikes, are an important—and ...


"Downright Indifference": Examining Unpublished Decisions In The Federal Courts Of Appeals, Merritt E. Mcalister Feb 2020

"Downright Indifference": Examining Unpublished Decisions In The Federal Courts Of Appeals, Merritt E. Mcalister

Michigan Law Review

Nearly 90 percent of the work of the federal courts of appeals looks nothing like the opinions law students read in casebooks. Over the last fifty years, the so-called “unpublished decision” has overtaken the federal appellate courts in response to a caseload volume “crisis.” These are often short, perfunctory decisions that make no law; they are, one federal judge said, “not safe for human consumption.”

The creation of the inferior unpublished decision also has created an inferior track of appellate justice for a class of appellants: indigent litigants. The federal appellate courts routinely shunt indigent appeals to a second-tier appellate ...


“A World Of Steel-Eyed Death”: An Empirical Evaluation Of The Failure Of The Strickland Standard To Ensure Adequate Counsel To Defendants With Mental Disabilities Facing The Death Penalty, Michael L. Perlin, Talia Roitberg Harmon, Sarah Chatt Jan 2020

“A World Of Steel-Eyed Death”: An Empirical Evaluation Of The Failure Of The Strickland Standard To Ensure Adequate Counsel To Defendants With Mental Disabilities Facing The Death Penalty, Michael L. Perlin, Talia Roitberg Harmon, Sarah Chatt

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

First, we discuss the background of the development of counsel adequacy in death penalty cases. Next, we look carefully at Strickland, and the subsequent Supreme Court cases that appear—on the surface—to bolster it in this context. We then consider multiple jurisprudential filters that we believe must be taken seriously if this area of the law is to be given any authentic meaning. Next, we will examine and interpret the data that we have developed. Finally, we will look at this entire area of law through the filter of therapeutic jurisprudence, and then explain why and how the charade ...


Symbolism And The Thirteenth Amendment: The Injury Of Exposure To Governmentally Endorsed Symbols Of Racial Superiority, Edward H. Kyle Jan 2020

Symbolism And The Thirteenth Amendment: The Injury Of Exposure To Governmentally Endorsed Symbols Of Racial Superiority, Edward H. Kyle

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

One of the debates often encountered by native southerners centers around our historical symbols. There are heated opinions on both sides of the issue as to what these symbols mean and whether they should be allowed to be displayed. The latter question has begun making its way into the courts, with many southern symbols and memorials being accused of promoting the philosophy of racial supremacy. Despite the growing public concern, modern courts refuse to rule on the question. They claim they are forestalled by Article III’s standing requirement that plaintiffs must have suffered a concrete injury in fact. They ...


Sovereign Immunity, The Au, And The Icc: Legitimacy Undermined, Christa-Gaye Kerr Jan 2020

Sovereign Immunity, The Au, And The Icc: Legitimacy Undermined, Christa-Gaye Kerr

Michigan Journal of International Law

This note examines how the International Criminal Court’s indictment of African leaders has led to a breakdown in the relationship between the Court and the African Union and offers solutions to repair this relationship. In particular, the ICC’s blanket rejection of sovereign immunity and its close relationship with the UNSC delegitimize the Court. As an organization that relies on the cooperation of states across the world, this is something the Court cannot afford. The ICC’s decade-long fight with the African Union over the disproportionate number of charges leveled against African nationals has weakened its stature with African ...


The Possibility Of Prosecuting Corporations For Climate Crimes Before The International Criminal Court: All Roads Lead To The Rome Statute?, Donna Minha Jan 2020

The Possibility Of Prosecuting Corporations For Climate Crimes Before The International Criminal Court: All Roads Lead To The Rome Statute?, Donna Minha

Michigan Journal of International Law

Due to rapid developments in climate science, scientists are now able to quantifiably link significant greenhouse gas emissions caused by major oil and gas corporations to specific climate impacts. These scientific advances have been accompanied by the publication of documents and studies suggesting that the oil and gas industry allegedly had knowledge of climate change as early as sixty years ago, and yet it actively worked to promote climate change denial and to delay governmental regulation on this matter. Though climate-related litigation is proceeding against the industry in different jurisdictions, proceedings brought against oil and gas corporations mainly focus on ...


Are Litigation Outcome Disparities Inevitable? Courts, Technology, And The Future Of Impartiality., Avital Mentovich, J.J. Prescott, Orna Rabinovich-Einy Jan 2020

Are Litigation Outcome Disparities Inevitable? Courts, Technology, And The Future Of Impartiality., Avital Mentovich, J.J. Prescott, Orna Rabinovich-Einy

Articles

This article explores the ability of technology—specifically, online judicial procedures—to eliminate systematic group-level litigation outcome disparities (i.e., disparities correlated with the visible identity markers of litigants). Our judicial system has long operated under the assumption that it can only be “impartial enough.” After all, judges, like all human beings, harbor implicit biases that are often sizable, unconscious, and triggered automatically, and research indicates that strategies to curb implicit biases in human decision making may be ineffective, especially in the face of the resource and caseload constraints of modern-day adjudication. The recent emergence of online court proceedings, however ...


A Functional Approach To Judicial Review Of Ptab Rulings On Mixed Questions Of Law And Fact, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jul 2019

A Functional Approach To Judicial Review Of Ptab Rulings On Mixed Questions Of Law And Fact, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (“Federal Circuit”) has long relied on active appellate review to bring uniformity and clarity to patent law. It initially treated the PTO the same as the federal district courts, reviewing its factual findings for clear error and its legal conclusions de novo. Following reversal by the Supreme Court in Dickinson v. Zurko, the Federal Circuit began giving greater deference to PTO factual findings. But it continued to review the PTO’s legal conclusions de novo, while coding an expansive list of disputed issues in patent cases as legal conclusions, even when they ...


Unintentional Irony In Landmark Decisions Of The Delaware Supreme Court Regarding Corporate Law, Steven J. Cleveland May 2019

Unintentional Irony In Landmark Decisions Of The Delaware Supreme Court Regarding Corporate Law, Steven J. Cleveland

Michigan Business & Entrepreneurial Law Review

Three landmark decisions of the Delaware Supreme Court exhibit unintentional irony: Beam v. Stewart, Smith v. Van Gorkom, and Paramount Communications Inc. v. Time Inc. In Beam, the court concluded that, regarding the decision of whether to seek remedy against Martha Stewart, her fellow directors would not have jeopardized their reputations for the minimal gain of continuing their business and personal relationships with her. Ironically, the court failed to acknowledge that Martha Stewart—in trading on material nonpublic information, which gave rise to the corporate claim against her—jeopardized her reputation (ultimately losing hundreds of millions of dollars and her ...


The Ever-Changing Scope Of Insider Trading Liability For Tippees In The Second Circuit, Sari Rosenfeld May 2019

The Ever-Changing Scope Of Insider Trading Liability For Tippees In The Second Circuit, Sari Rosenfeld

Michigan Business & Entrepreneurial Law Review

Liability under insider trading law continues to change as federal courts attempt to find new ways to hold insiders liable under the law. As recently as two years ago, the Second Circuit—in analyzing past decisions regarding tipper-tippee insider trading violations—blurred the distinction between legal and illegal insider trading when it fundamentally altered the idea of “personal benefit.” These various decisions provide the basis for antifraud provisions of securities law applying to insider trading, the consequences of which can be detrimental. This Note will discuss the standard that the Second Circuit uses to hold tippees liable for insider trading ...


Equitable Gateways: Toward Expanded Federal Habeas Corpus Review Of State Court Criminal Convictions, Eve Brensike Primus Apr 2019

Equitable Gateways: Toward Expanded Federal Habeas Corpus Review Of State Court Criminal Convictions, Eve Brensike Primus

Articles

State prisoners who file federal habeas corpus petitions face a maze of procedural and substantive restrictions that effectively prevent almost all prisoners from obtaining meaningful review of their convictions. But it is a mistake to think that habeas litigation is just a Kafkaesque nightmare with no constructive potential. Federal courts do sometimes cut through the doctrinal morass to consider state prisoners’ claims, relying on what this Articleterms "equitable gateways" to federal habeas relief. Litigants and courts generally underestimate the potential these gateways offer, with the result that habeas litigation does not focus on them as often as it should. Here ...


College Athletics: The Chink In The Seventh Circuit's "Law And Economics" Armor, Michael A. Carrier, Marc Edelman Apr 2019

College Athletics: The Chink In The Seventh Circuit's "Law And Economics" Armor, Michael A. Carrier, Marc Edelman

Michigan Law Review Online

If any court is linked to the “law and economics” movement, it is the Seventh Circuit, home of former Judge Richard Posner, the “Chicago School,” and analysis based on markets and economics. It thus comes as a surprise that in college-athletics cases, the court has replaced economic analysis with legal formalisms. In adopting a deferential approach that would uphold nearly every rule the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) claims is related to amateurism, the court recalls the pre- Chicago School era, in which courts aggressively applied “per se” illegality based on a restraint’s form, rather than substance. While the ...


Targeting Poverty In The Courts: Improving The Measurement Of Ability To Pay Fines, Meghan M. O'Neil, J.J. Prescott Jan 2019

Targeting Poverty In The Courts: Improving The Measurement Of Ability To Pay Fines, Meghan M. O'Neil, J.J. Prescott

Articles

Ability-to-pay determinations are essential when governments use money-based alternative sanctions, like fines, to enforce laws. One longstanding difficulty in the U.S. has been the extreme lack of guidance on how courts are to determine a litigant’s ability to pay. The result has been a seat-of-the-pants approach that is inefficient and inaccurate, and, as a consequence, very socially costly. Fortunately, online platform technology presents a promising avenue for reform. In particular, platform technology offers the potential to increase litigant access, reduce costs, and ensure consistent and fair treatment—all of which should lead to more accurate sanctions. We use ...