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Full-Text Articles in Law

To Seek A Newer World: Prisoners’ Rights At The Frontier, David M. Shapiro Apr 2016

To Seek A Newer World: Prisoners’ Rights At The Frontier, David M. Shapiro

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

Prisoners’ rights lawyers have long faced a dismal legal landscape. Yet, 2015 was a remarkable year for prison litigation that could signal a new period for this area of law—the Supreme Court handed down decisions that will reverberate in prison jurisprudence for decades to come. New questions have been asked, new avenues opened. This piece is about what the Court has done recently, and what possibilities it has opened for the future. More broadly, I suggest that the Court may be subjecting prison officials to greater scrutiny and that this shifting judicial landscape reflects an evolving social discourse about ...


The Return Of Coverture, Allison Anna Tait Jan 2016

The Return Of Coverture, Allison Anna Tait

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

Once, the notion that husbands and wives were equal partners in marriage seemed outlandish and unnatural. Today, the marriage narrative has been reversed and the prevailing attitude is that marriage has become an increasingly equitable institution. This is the story that Justice Kennedy told in Obergefell v. Hodges, in which he described marriage as an evolving institution that has adapted in response to social change such that discriminatory marriage rules no longer apply. Coverture exemplifies this change: marriage used to be deeply shaped by coverture rules and now it is not. While celebrating the demise of coverture, however, the substantive ...


Why And How To Compensate Exonerees, Erik Encarnacion Jan 2016

Why And How To Compensate Exonerees, Erik Encarnacion

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

How can we bring greater uniformity to exoneree compensation in a principled and just way? This paper argues that answering this question becomes easier once we identify the principles of justice that best justify and explain compensation statutes. In particular, commentators have assumed incorrectly that the goal of compensating exonerees should be understood primarily in terms of corrective justice, which posits a duty to undo or repair wrongfully inflicted harms. This paper argues, by contrast, that restitutionary justice, which forces parties to relinquish unjust gains, better justifies and explains compensation statutes. The unjust gains at issue are fair wages withheld ...


The Exceptional Circumstances Of Johnson V. United States, Leah M. Litman Jan 2016

The Exceptional Circumstances Of Johnson V. United States, Leah M. Litman

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

Johnson v. United States held that the “residual clause” of the Armed Career Criminal Act (ACCA) is unconstitutionally vague. Since Johnson was decided six months ago, courts have been sorting out which of the currently incarcerated defendants who were sentenced under ACCA’s residual clause may be resentenced. Determining who can be resentenced in light of Johnson requires courts to answer several questions. For example, does the rule in Johnson apply retroactively to convictions that have already become final? And can prisoners who have already filed one petition for postconviction review—review that occurs after a defendant’s conviction has ...


The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly: Reflections Of A Counterclerk, Gil Seinfeld Jan 2016

The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly: Reflections Of A Counterclerk, Gil Seinfeld

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

Everyone has strong feelings about Justice Scalia. Lionized by the political right and demonized by the left, he has been among the most polarizing figures in American public life over the course of the last halfcentury. It is hardly surprising, then, that in the weeks since Justice Scalia’s death, the public discourse surrounding his legacy has exhibited something of a split personality. There have, of course, been plenty of appropriately respectful—even admiring—tributes from some of the Justice’s ideological adversaries; and here and there one of the Justice’s champions has acknowledged, with a hint of lament ...