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2006

Legal Writing and Research

Law and Society

Articles 1 - 13 of 13

Full-Text Articles in Law

Holding Charities Accountable: Some Thoughts From An Ex-Regulator, Catharine P. Wells Dec 2006

Holding Charities Accountable: Some Thoughts From An Ex-Regulator, Catharine P. Wells

Boston College Law School Faculty Papers

This paper recounts a number of lessons learned in the course of serving as the Director of Public Charities for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. It incorporates these lessons into a discussion of the proper analysis of charitable organizations. Should charities be analogized to for-profit firms or are they something that is essentially different? The paper argues that they lack many of the attributes of Coasian firms and that they should be considered as “consumption groups” that have different methods of accountability.


Reconsidering Spousal Privileges After Crawford, R. Michael Cassidy Nov 2006

Reconsidering Spousal Privileges After Crawford, R. Michael Cassidy

Boston College Law School Faculty Papers

In this article the author explores how domestic violence prevention efforts have been adversely impacted by the Supreme Court’s new “testimonial” approach to the confrontation clause. Examining the Court’s trilogy of cases from Crawford to Davis and Hammon, the author argues that the introduction of certain forms of hearsay in criminal cases has been drastically limited by the court’s new originalist approach to the Sixth Amendment. The author explains how state spousal privilege statutes often present a significant barrier to obtaining live testimony from victims of domestic violence. The author then argues that state legislatures should reconsider ...


A Complete Property Right Amendment, John H. Ryskamp Oct 2006

A Complete Property Right Amendment, John H. Ryskamp

ExpressO

The trend of the eminent domain reform and "Kelo plus" initiatives is toward a comprehensive Constitutional property right incorporating the elements of level of review, nature of government action, and extent of compensation. This article contains a draft amendment which reflects these concerns.


Imagining The Law-Trained Reader: The Faulty Description Of The Audience In Legal Writing Textbooks., Jessica E. Price Sep 2006

Imagining The Law-Trained Reader: The Faulty Description Of The Audience In Legal Writing Textbooks., Jessica E. Price

ExpressO

In law schools today, first-year legal writing courses play a crucial role in helping students learn to communicate about the law. Many legal writing teachers approach legal writing education in a practical way, attempting to pass on their own experiences in law practice settings to students. Unfortunately, as other writers have observed, such reliance on personal knowledge about “what lawyers are like” may lead legal writing teachers to oversimplify a complicated matter – the needs and preferences of the audience for legal writing – and may even amount to indoctrination in stereotypes about law practice. This article offers a closer look than ...


Cite Unseen: How Neutral Citation And America's Law Schools Can Cure Our Strange Devotion To Bibliographical Orthodoxy And The Constriction Of Open And Equal Access To The Law, Ian Gallacher Aug 2006

Cite Unseen: How Neutral Citation And America's Law Schools Can Cure Our Strange Devotion To Bibliographical Orthodoxy And The Constriction Of Open And Equal Access To The Law, Ian Gallacher

ExpressO

This article looks at the phenomenon of legal citation and its unintended consequences. After considering the reasons for the American legal system’s devotion to precisely accurate and detailed citations and the history of American legal citation, the article looks at the effect the bibliographical orthodoxy promoted by the two leading citation manuals – The Bluebook and the ALWD Manual – has on open access to the law.

In particular, the article looks at how the required common law citation format prescribed by both of these manuals helps to consolidate the market position of West and LexisNexis, the duopoly of legal publishing ...


Bond Repudiation, Tax Codes, The Appropriations Process And Restitution Post-Eminent Domain Reform, John H. Ryskamp Jun 2006

Bond Repudiation, Tax Codes, The Appropriations Process And Restitution Post-Eminent Domain Reform, John H. Ryskamp

ExpressO

This brief comment suggests where the anti-eminent domain movement might be heading next.


Economic Analysis Of Law And Economics, Oren Gazal-Ayal May 2006

Economic Analysis Of Law And Economics, Oren Gazal-Ayal

ExpressO

The academic world is wonderful. Like few other professionals, we can choose what we want to do and what questions we think are important, which in our line of work means choosing what topics we want to research. But what influences our choices? This paper examines what drives scholars to select Law and Economics (L&E) as a topic for research. It does so by implementing the methodology of many L&E papers – by assuming that regulation and incentives matter.

Legal scholars face very different academic incentives in different parts of the world. In some countries, the academic standards for appointment, promotion and tenure encourage legal scholars to concentrate on L&E. In others, they strongly discourage such research. Thus, we should expect wide variation in the rate of participation of legal scholars in the L&E discourse across countries. On the other hand, economists are evaluated with similar yardsticks everywhere. Thus, participation of economists in the Law and Economics discourse is likely to vary much less from one place to another.

The hypothesis of this paper is that the academic incentives are a major factor in the level of participation in the L&E scholarship. This "incentives hypothesis" is presented and then examined empirically on data gathered from the list of authors in L&E journals and the list of participants in L&E conferences. The data generally supports the hypothesis. In the legal academia, the incentives to focus research on L&E topics are the strongest in Israel, they are weaker in North America and weakest in Europe. In fact, the data reveal that lawyers' authorship of L&E papers weighted by population is almost ten times higher in Israel then in North America; while in Europe it is almost ten times lower then in North America. By comparison, the weighted participation level of economists – who face relatively similar academic environments across countries – in L&E research is not significantly different across countries.


The Gratuities Debate And Campaign Reform – How Strong Is The Link?, George D. Brown May 2006

The Gratuities Debate And Campaign Reform – How Strong Is The Link?, George D. Brown

Boston College Law School Faculty Papers

The federal gratuities statute, 18 USC § 201(c), continues to be a source of confusion and contention. The confusion stems largely from problems of draftsmanship within the statute, as well as uncertainty concerning the relationship of the gratuities offense to bribery. Both offenses are contained in the same statute; the former is often seen as a lesser-included offense variety of the latter. The controversy stems from broader concerns about whether the receipt of gratuities by public officials, even from those they regulate, should be a crime. The argument that such conduct should not be criminalized can be traced to, and ...


Dealing With Dumb And Dumber: The Continuing Mission Of Citizen Environmentalism, Zygmunt J.B. Plater May 2006

Dealing With Dumb And Dumber: The Continuing Mission Of Citizen Environmentalism, Zygmunt J.B. Plater

Boston College Law School Faculty Papers

Surveying the history of citizen environmentalism in the context of environmental law and politics over the past fifty years, this essay hypothesizes five different categories of corporate, governmental, political, and individual actions that deserve to be called “dumb,” and the societal lessons that have been or could be learned from each. If there is truth to the wistful aphorism that “we learn from our mistakes,” then our society is in position to learn a great deal about our world and how it works, which perhaps provides some ground for hope for the years to come. Environmentalism embodies fundamentally rational and ...


Language, Deals And Standards: The Future Of Xml Contracts, Lawrence A. Cunningham May 2006

Language, Deals And Standards: The Future Of Xml Contracts, Lawrence A. Cunningham

Boston College Law School Faculty Papers

eXtensible Markup Language (XML) structures information in documentary systems ranging from financial reports to medical records and business contracts. XML standards for specific applications are developed spontaneously by self-appointed technologists or entrepreneurs. XML’s social and economic stakes are considerable, especially when developed for the private law of contracts. XML can reduce transaction costs but also limit the range of contractual expression and redefine the nature of law practice. So reliance on spontaneous development may be sub-optimal and identification of a more formal public standard setting model necessary. To exploit XML’s advantages while minimizing risks, this Article envisions creating ...


The Notion Of Solidarity And The Secret History Of American Labor Law, Thomas C. Kohler Apr 2006

The Notion Of Solidarity And The Secret History Of American Labor Law, Thomas C. Kohler

Boston College Law School Faculty Papers

“Solidarity,” a term not overly familiar to Americans, sometimes seems to have as many meanings as it has users. The concept became incorporated into American thought during the 19th and 20th century waves of Catholic and Jewish immigration. It provides a European vision of communitarian social order that competes with the “unencumbered self”—America’s unique brand of individualism. Among philosophers, politicians, religious thinkers, and social activists, solidarity theory sought to redefine the then-prevailing views of social bonds. Nowhere is this more apparent than in the American labor movement, which espouses as its core values the principles of unity and ...


The Fed’S New Model Of Supervision For “Large Complex Banking Organizations”: Coordinated Risk-Based Supervision Of Financial Multinationals For International Financial Stability, Cynthia C. Lichtenstein Jan 2006

The Fed’S New Model Of Supervision For “Large Complex Banking Organizations”: Coordinated Risk-Based Supervision Of Financial Multinationals For International Financial Stability, Cynthia C. Lichtenstein

Boston College Law School Faculty Papers

Large internationally active financial institutions, in particular multinational banks, have the capacity to create profound disturbances in the globalized financial markets in the event of failure. For that reason, these entities are supervised and examined in a manner that is completely different than the ordinary business corporation. This piece describes the new methodology that has been developed by the United States' central bank, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System or "the Fed" for short, since 1995, for examining what the Fed calls "large complex banking organizations" or LBCOs and indicates how the system in fact carries out ...


"Pre-Negotiation" Counseling: An Alternative Model, Paul R. Tremblay Jan 2006

"Pre-Negotiation" Counseling: An Alternative Model, Paul R. Tremblay

Boston College Law School Faculty Papers

This Article describes an alternative model for the process of legal counseling, a model applicable to a very common counseling experience ignored by the conventional Interviewing and Counseling texts—the experience of obtaining negotiating and settlement authority from a client. Counseling is, of course, a basic lawyering skill taught in law school clinics and in simulation courses. It is one of the most critical elements of good lawyering, and it is a skill which can be taught, and taught through the use of models. Every lawyering skills book available includes instruction about effective counseling. But when one reviews the available ...