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Full-Text Articles in Law

Legal Liability For Corporations Doing Business In The West Bank: An Analysis Of Corporate Liability And A Shareholder Proposal Solution For Mitigating Risky Business Activity, Mila Kelly Jun 2021

Legal Liability For Corporations Doing Business In The West Bank: An Analysis Of Corporate Liability And A Shareholder Proposal Solution For Mitigating Risky Business Activity, Mila Kelly

William & Mary Business Law Review

For over half a century, Israeli Settlements in the occupied West Bank have expanded significantly in both land and economic activity. While this expansion has not been without criticism from the international community over fear of humanitarian law violations, global businesses have not shied away from the profitability of this region. This engagement in corporate activity within any disputed territory comes with its fair share of business risk, including legal liability for complicity in purported human rights violations.

This Note will examine the hypothetical liability for corporations doing business in the West Bank and explain how international law and the ...


Treble, Treble Toil And Trouble: The New Per Se Rule As A Protection Against The Curse Of The "Supreme Evil", Seth Konopasek May 2021

Treble, Treble Toil And Trouble: The New Per Se Rule As A Protection Against The Curse Of The "Supreme Evil", Seth Konopasek

William & Mary Business Law Review

The Supreme Court has called collusion between firms the “supreme evil” of antitrust. Despite public and private enforcement efforts, collusive firms and the cartels they form cost American consumers billions of dollars a year and undermine the virtues of our free market economy. The Chicago School theory of antitrust enforcement, which has dominated antitrust scholarship, vehemently disapproves of private antitrust actions that enable plaintiffs to recover treble damages. Recent scholarship, however, has rejected the Chicago School’s concerns of overdeterrence and embraced the treble damages remedy. This Note follows the recent scholarship and proposes the New Per Se Rule, which ...


Blurred Lines: Disparate Impact And Disparate Treatment Challenges To Subjective Decisions-- The Case Of Reductions In Force, Allan King, Alexandra Hemenway May 2021

Blurred Lines: Disparate Impact And Disparate Treatment Challenges To Subjective Decisions-- The Case Of Reductions In Force, Allan King, Alexandra Hemenway

William & Mary Business Law Review

Subjective employment decisions may be challenged under disparate treatment (intentional discrimination) and/or disparate impact (the discriminatory consequences of a neutral policy) theories of discrimination. However, these theories and supporting evidence often are conflated when the criteria for selecting employees are ill-defined or unrecorded. In those instances, the process by which employees are selected merges with the selections themselves, these legal theories converge as well. This Article critically discusses how courts have struggled to distinguish these theories in cases alleging a discriminatory reduction in force. It suggests how these cases should be submitted to juries, to preserve the liability and ...


Designing Dual-Class Sunsets: The Case For A Transfer-Centered Approach, Marc T. Moore Feb 2021

Designing Dual-Class Sunsets: The Case For A Transfer-Centered Approach, Marc T. Moore

William & Mary Business Law Review

Dual-class stock (DCS) structures, and their implications for managerial accountability and corporate governance more broadly, have become prevalent concerns for corporate lawyers and policymakers. Recent academic and practitioner debates on DCS have tended to focus less on the general merits and drawbacks of DCS versus one share/one vote structures, and more on the specific common-ground concern as to whether and how such structures are subjected to contingent reversal or “sunset”. This Article compares the relative advantages and disadvantages of time-, ownership- and transfer-centered models of DCS sunset provisions. It argues in favor of the transfer-centered model on the grounds ...


Conspiracy Liability And The Fcpa: The Second Circuit's Rare Interpretation Of The Fcpa In United States V. Hoskins And Its Potential Implications, Morgan R. Knudtsen Jul 2020

Conspiracy Liability And The Fcpa: The Second Circuit's Rare Interpretation Of The Fcpa In United States V. Hoskins And Its Potential Implications, Morgan R. Knudtsen

William & Mary Business Law Review

The scope of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) is inherently difficult to ascertain. Over time, the SEC and DOJ have privately settled claims under the FCPA, leaving most interpretation to government agencies. Though agency interpretation happens frequently, there has been little interpretation over major questions such as who is subject to the FCPA’s jurisdiction and how far that jurisdiction extends. United States v. Hoskins, which was decided in August 2018, involved the FCPA, conspiracy, and foreign corporate officials. The Second Circuit in its decision subsequently limited the scope of the FCPA, holding that liability cannot extend to foreign ...


All That Glitters Is Gold: The Regulation Of Hidden Advertisements And Undisclosed Sponsorships In The World Of Beauty Social Media Influencers, Ashley Luong May 2020

All That Glitters Is Gold: The Regulation Of Hidden Advertisements And Undisclosed Sponsorships In The World Of Beauty Social Media Influencers, Ashley Luong

William & Mary Business Law Review

What happens when a trusted acquaintance is caught lying? What if these lies have influenced your purchasing decisions? In the realm of social media influencers, the line between authentic opinions and sponsored advertisements is a blurred one. Influencers have considerable marketing power over millions of followers and their brand of authenticity makes them a desirable partner to big corporations seeking to promote their products. Under current FTC regulations, the simplified rule for advertisement disclosure is to make the disclosure “clear and conspicuous” with very little guidance beyond that phrase. Influencers are uncertain how to disclose, some choosing to toe the ...


Digital Accessibility In The Hospitality And Tourism Industry: Legal And Ethical Considerations, Debra D. Burke, Kenneth J. Sanney, Dan Clapper May 2020

Digital Accessibility In The Hospitality And Tourism Industry: Legal And Ethical Considerations, Debra D. Burke, Kenneth J. Sanney, Dan Clapper

William & Mary Business Law Review

Federal law requires accessibility for public sector websites. What about the web pages and apps of hotels, restaurants, and tourism providers? The Americans with Disabilities Act may cover private sector websites if they are considered a place of public accommodation, but the law is unclear. This Article will provide an overview of the legal responsibilities of operators to provide accessibility to persons with disabilities, discuss the World Wide Web Consortium’s guidelines for web accessibility, and argue that the hospitality and tourism industry has a unique ethical obligation to fill in the gap where the legal system has failed this ...


Securities Exchange Act Section 4e(A): Toothless "Internal-Timing Directive" Or Statute Of Limitation?, Richard E. Brodsky May 2020

Securities Exchange Act Section 4e(A): Toothless "Internal-Timing Directive" Or Statute Of Limitation?, Richard E. Brodsky

William & Mary Business Law Review

The Securities and Exchange Commission has a problem, and everyone knows it: its investigative process suffers from excessive delay, which harms both individuals and entity it investigates and its own enforcement program. This problem has long been recognized and complained about, but never remedied.

In 2010, Congress passed a law specifically designed to solve the problem of excessive delay but, the way the SEC has read the law—which has been acquiesced in by the courts and ignored by subsequent Congresses—has rendered it toothless and essentially meaningless. This has been accomplished, first, by the Commission’s cabined interpretation of ...


Loyalty Loses Ground To Market Freedom In The U.S. Supreme Court, Daniel Harris Apr 2019

Loyalty Loses Ground To Market Freedom In The U.S. Supreme Court, Daniel Harris

William & Mary Business Law Review

In the last decade, the U.S. Supreme Court has taken a much less moralistic and much more market-oriented approach to questions of fiduciary loyalty. In cases involving fiduciaries with conflicts of interest, the Court has shifted the burden of proof to the party claiming unfair treatment, thereby protecting deals and making loyalty harder to enforce. The Court has also struck down or narrowly construed laws designed to prevent disloyalty by fiduciaries on the theory that broad prohibitions on business conduct encroach on constitutionally protected freedoms.

This Article discusses how the Supreme Court’s new approach represents a departure from ...


Criminal Trade Secret Theft Cases Against Judgment Proof Defendants In Texas And California, Michelle Evans, Kurt M. Saunders Apr 2019

Criminal Trade Secret Theft Cases Against Judgment Proof Defendants In Texas And California, Michelle Evans, Kurt M. Saunders

William & Mary Business Law Review

Trade secret theft is a costly and ongoing risk to many businesses. As the two most populous states, California and Texas are home to numerous businesses that own trade secrets. Although civil remedies afford one source of relief when a trade secret has been stolen or disclosed, collecting on a judgment may be impossible due to the Homestead laws in both states, which effectively render the defendants judgment proof. In such cases, another alternative is to consider a criminal prosecution under the Federal Economic Espionage Act or state law. The same misconduct that results in civil liability can also violate ...


Government Ownership Of Banks: A Curse Or A Blessing For The United States?, Yueh-Ping (Alex) Yang Apr 2019

Government Ownership Of Banks: A Curse Or A Blessing For The United States?, Yueh-Ping (Alex) Yang

William & Mary Business Law Review

During the Financial Crisis of 2007–2008, the Treasury injected an enormous amount of capital and held equity in 707 financial institutions to stabilize the U.S. financial system. The government’s large-scale ownership of banks alarmed the U.S. banking sector. The mainstream opinion in the United States strongly opposed this practice, mostly due to the distrust of the government and the fear that government intervention would jeopardize private shareholders’ interests. Later developments, including the Treasury’s quick exit from its holdings and the Dodd-Frank Act’s declaration of the end of bailouts, suggest that the U.S. government ...


Untangling The Web Of Consignment Law: The Journey From The Common Law & Article 2 To Revised Article 9, Willa Gibson Feb 2019

Untangling The Web Of Consignment Law: The Journey From The Common Law & Article 2 To Revised Article 9, Willa Gibson

William & Mary Business Law Review

This Article examines and analyzes the law of consignments from the common law through Revised Article 9 with a goal towards identifying and analyzing the uncertainties and confusion that have persisted throughout the transition from the common law to the UCC. The law of consignments has abounded with uncertainty since its genesis under common law. In an attempt to clarify the persistent confusion and disarray surrounding the law, the UCC enacted section 2-326; but the statute was not a model of clarity, engendering increased uncertainty and confusion. Courts wrestled with how to interpret the provision to be consistent with the ...


Mutuals: An Area Of Legal Climate Change, Karl T. Muth, Andrew Leventhal Apr 2018

Mutuals: An Area Of Legal Climate Change, Karl T. Muth, Andrew Leventhal

William & Mary Business Law Review

Underappreciated in its importance and often-misunderstood in its implications, the choice between a company limited by shares and a company organized as a mutual is an important decision in sectors ranging from agriculture to banking to insurance. Adding gravity to this particular decision is the difficulty and enormous cost of corporate metamorphosis between company types later in the company’s life. The authors examine the history of the mutual form, its popularity’s rise and fall during the twentieth century, and its advantages and disadvantages in today’s environment.


Can Taxes Mitigate Corporate Governance Inefficiencies?, Noam Noked Nov 2017

Can Taxes Mitigate Corporate Governance Inefficiencies?, Noam Noked

William & Mary Business Law Review

Policymakers have long viewed tax policy as an instrument to influence and change corporate governance practices. Certain tax rules were enacted to discourage pyramidal business structures and large golden parachutes, and to encourage performance-based compensation. Other proposals, such as imposing higher taxes on excessive executive compensation, have also attracted increasing attention.

Contrary to this view, this Article contends that the ability to effectively mitigate corporate governance inefficiencies through the use of corrective taxes is very limited, and that these taxes may cause more harm than benefit. There are a few reasons for the limited effectiveness of corrective taxes. Importantly, the ...


Smith V. Van Gorkom And The Kobayashi Maru: The Place Of The Trans Union Case In The Development Of Delaware Corporate Law, Robert T. Miller Nov 2017

Smith V. Van Gorkom And The Kobayashi Maru: The Place Of The Trans Union Case In The Development Of Delaware Corporate Law, Robert T. Miller

William & Mary Business Law Review

Although it is dangerous to attempt to say anything new about Smith v. Van Gorkom, the most controversial decision in the history of Delaware corporate law, this Article tries to do so by arguing that the extensive development of Delaware law since the time of the case allows us a perspective on Van Gorkom not available when the case was decided in 1985 or, indeed, for a long time thereafter. In particular, Van Gorkom had as important a role in the evolution of Delaware law as the three other outstanding cases decided by the Delaware Supreme Court in the miracle ...


The Ethics Of Representing Founders, Paul R. Tremblay Feb 2017

The Ethics Of Representing Founders, Paul R. Tremblay

William & Mary Business Law Review

Lawyers assisting entrepreneurial startups frequently work with individual founders before any formal organizational client materializes. In advising founders about such legal matters as whether to establish an entity, and if so, which entity best fits the needs of the enterprise, as well as how to arrange the owners’ relationships within the business, the lawyer necessarily has an attorney-client relationship with someone. The prevailing scholarship about startup representation pays surprisingly little attention to the posture of the lawyer and her founder-clients in the pre-organization context. This Article investigates the lawyer’s responsibilities and commitments in depth.

A lawyer working with a ...


Lack Of Marketability And Minority Discounts In Valuing Close Corporation Stock: Elusiveness And Judicial Synchrony In Pursuit Of Equitable Consensus, Stephen J. Leacock Apr 2016

Lack Of Marketability And Minority Discounts In Valuing Close Corporation Stock: Elusiveness And Judicial Synchrony In Pursuit Of Equitable Consensus, Stephen J. Leacock

William & Mary Business Law Review

This Article discusses the often subtle tasks faced by the courts in construing close corporations law, which is state law. The judiciary in individual states has skillfully managed the invention, continuing development and ongoing evolution of lack of marketability and minority discounts as it strives to honor its constitutional mandate to resolve controversies between minority and majority shareholders in close corporations relating to valuing close corporations’ stock. These controversies arise in the context of share transactions in such corporations. Close corporations are traditionally not listed on stock exchanges, and the legislatures in some states have, in some instances, helped to ...


Walking On Thin Ice: Does The Revenue Procedure 2013-13 Signify The Demise Of Leveraged Spin-Offs?, Natalia Caruso Apr 2015

Walking On Thin Ice: Does The Revenue Procedure 2013-13 Signify The Demise Of Leveraged Spin-Offs?, Natalia Caruso

William & Mary Business Law Review

Corporate taxpayers, when weighing leveraged spin-off transactions, have long relied on the comfort of Internal Revenue Service rulings to “bless” the deals. These transactions, when structured properly, are not subject to tax under section 355 of the Internal Revenue Code (“I.R.C.”) and can potentially provide great monetizing opportunities to public companies. Recent developments in the Internal Revenue Service’s ruling policy, however, removed the safety blanket companies had relied upon, as the Internal Revenue Service announced its decision to cease the issuance of the rulings addressing the deals’ qualification for tax-free treatment.

This Note will examine the history ...


U.S. V. Esquenazi: U.S. Appellate Court Defines “Instrumentality” Under The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act For The First Time, Jon Jordan Apr 2015

U.S. V. Esquenazi: U.S. Appellate Court Defines “Instrumentality” Under The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act For The First Time, Jon Jordan

William & Mary Business Law Review

No abstract provided.


Corporate Social Responsibility & Concession Theory, Stefan J. Padfield Feb 2015

Corporate Social Responsibility & Concession Theory, Stefan J. Padfield

William & Mary Business Law Review

This Essay examines three related propositions: (1) Voluntary corporate social responsibility (CSR) fails to effectively advance the agenda of a meaningful segment of CSR proponents; (2) None of the three dominant corporate governance theories—director primacy, shareholder primacy, or team production theory—support mandatory CSR as a normative matter; and, (3) Corporate personality theory, specifically concession theory, can be a meaningful source of leverage in advancing mandatory CSR in the face of opposition from the three primary corporate governance theories. In examining these propositions, this Essay makes the additional claims that Citizens United: (A) supports the proposition that corporate personality ...


The Federal Common Law Of Successor Liability And The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, Taylor J. Phillips Feb 2015

The Federal Common Law Of Successor Liability And The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, Taylor J. Phillips

William & Mary Business Law Review

In recent years, the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) have vigorously enforced the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). The FCPA prohibits bribery of foreign government officials, and the statute provides for significant civil and criminal sanctions. Settling and remediating violations can cost corporate defendants millions, with several corporate enforcement actions exceeding $100 million in sanctions. Moreover, enforcement actions related to the FCPA often are not brought until many years after the alleged violations.

Because the massive potential liabilities associated with an FCPA violation may not manifest themselves until years after the violation occurred, prospective ...


A Concept-Sensitive Managerial Analysis With Law: Applying A Business Concept To A Legal Rule To Identify The Domain Of Business Situations, James E. Holloway Feb 2015

A Concept-Sensitive Managerial Analysis With Law: Applying A Business Concept To A Legal Rule To Identify The Domain Of Business Situations, James E. Holloway

William & Mary Business Law Review

The traditional fact-sensitive managerial analysis with law analyzes business situations to identify legal issues and applies legal rules to facts to make judicial decisions. The fact-sensitive managerial analysis takes decades to identify a family of business situations and lacks the analytical capacity to use business knowledge (concepts) and analytical methods to identify business situations. Alternatively, a concept-sensitive managerial analysis with law increases factual sensitivity by applying a business concept to a legal rule to shorten the duration of identifying an extensive family of business situations. All situations are not useful or effective when making business decisions or managing a business ...


The Social Enterprise Revolution In Corporate Law: A Primer On Emerging Corporate Entities In Europe And The United States And The Case For The Benefit Corporation, Robert T. Esposito Apr 2013

The Social Enterprise Revolution In Corporate Law: A Primer On Emerging Corporate Entities In Europe And The United States And The Case For The Benefit Corporation, Robert T. Esposito

William & Mary Business Law Review

Remarkably, in the face of a global recession, the social enterprise sector continued to experience extraordinary growth in both financial support and the number of newly authorized corporate entities aimed at social entrepreneurs who seek to use the power of business to simultaneously achieve profit and social or environmental benefits. This Article highlights recent developments in the social enterprise movement in Europe and the United States and focuses on the emergence of a surprisingly broad range of newly authorized corporate entities on both continents in response to the needs of social entrepreneurs. These include social cooperatives and the community interest ...


The Business Judgment Rule As An Immunity Doctrine, Lori Mcmillan Apr 2013

The Business Judgment Rule As An Immunity Doctrine, Lori Mcmillan

William & Mary Business Law Review

The business judgment rule is a judicially created doctrine that protects directors from personal civil liability for the decisions they make on behalf of a corporation. In today’s era of corporate scandals, global financial meltdowns, and directorial malfeasance, it has become especially important in setting the bar for when directors are appropriately responsible to shareholders for their actions. Traditionally the business judgment rule has been regarded as a standard of liability, although it has never really been explored or enunciated as such. This view determines eligibility for business judgment rule protection of a directorial decision after an examination of ...


Company Law In The European Union And The United States: A Comparative Analysis Of The Impact Of The Eu Freedoms Of Establishment And Capital And The U.S. Interstate Commerce Clause, Christoph Allmendinger Feb 2013

Company Law In The European Union And The United States: A Comparative Analysis Of The Impact Of The Eu Freedoms Of Establishment And Capital And The U.S. Interstate Commerce Clause, Christoph Allmendinger

William & Mary Business Law Review

Since the decision of the European Court of Justice in the Centros case, it has become popular in company law to draw comparisons between the United States economic constitution and the Single European Market. Since then, fears of a European “Delaware Effect,” which would create a “race to the bottom,” have hounded the debate on European company law. In this discussion, however, the unique constitutional framework of both the EU and the U.S. is seldom regarded. This constitutional framework, nevertheless, determines the behavior of both the legislators at state level and the market participants. This Article compares the impact ...


Executive Compensation And Income Inequality, Daniel J. Morrissey Feb 2013

Executive Compensation And Income Inequality, Daniel J. Morrissey

William & Mary Business Law Review

This Article explores the connection between exorbitant executive compensation and the growing income inequality in our country. It discusses the traditional legal attempts to rein in corporate remuneration as well as the more recent “Say-on-Pay” right given to shareholders in the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act of 2010. The Article concludes that negative stockholder votes can be evidence that directors have breached their fiduciary duties by granting overly generous pay hikes to their top officials.


America's Energy Dependency: Will Government Regulation Of Caffeine Bring The Caffeine Companies To A Crash?, Rakesh J. Parikh Apr 2012

America's Energy Dependency: Will Government Regulation Of Caffeine Bring The Caffeine Companies To A Crash?, Rakesh J. Parikh

William & Mary Business Law Review

In light of Americans’ growing love affair with caffeinated products, this Note considers not only the possibility of future regulation of those products, but also the effect that regulation would have on caffeinated product-producing companies. While there is no certainty that such regulation is in our future, the regulation of market-similar products like tobacco and alcohol, and regulations abroad on heavily caffeinated drinks, suggest American regulation of caffeinated products to be a distinct possibility. This would be a serious concern for caffeine companies, who could face reduced access to target markets as a result of FDA-imposed limitations, whether by age ...


Holman V. Commissioner: A Death Knell For The Tax Value Of Transfer Restrictions In Family Limited Partnerships?, Brent B. Nicholson Apr 2011

Holman V. Commissioner: A Death Knell For The Tax Value Of Transfer Restrictions In Family Limited Partnerships?, Brent B. Nicholson

William & Mary Business Law Review

This Article examines a recent United States court of appeals case concerning section 2703, Holman v. Commissioner,7 and some earlier cases, including a few under the 1958 regulation, that are relevant to Holman. The purpose of this Article is to explain the current state of the law with respect to buy-sell type agreements and their influence on setting the transfer tax value. The Article begins with a discussion of the relevant Code and Regulations, focusing on section 2703 and its legislative history. The Article then follows with a look at some of the relevant case law and an in-depth ...


At The Intersection Of Corporate Governance And Environmental Sustainability, Jayne W. Barnard Apr 2011

At The Intersection Of Corporate Governance And Environmental Sustainability, Jayne W. Barnard

William & Mary Business Law Review

Most boards of public companies have learned to live comfortably with audit committees, nominating committees, and compensation committees. An increasing number of companies are now also creating risk-management committees. This Essay explores the early stages of development of yet another board-level committee: the sustainability committee. The Essay posits several advantages to having a board-level sustainability committee and identifies possible sources of pressure for the creation of more such committees. It also suggests some of the disadvantages of sustainability committees and cautions against cosmetic governance reform. By examining what we know today (and can imagine tomorrow) about sustainability committees, this Essay ...


Virginia Is For Lovers And Directors: Important Differences Between Fiduciary Duties In Virginia And Delaware, Laurence V. Parker Jr. Feb 2011

Virginia Is For Lovers And Directors: Important Differences Between Fiduciary Duties In Virginia And Delaware, Laurence V. Parker Jr.

William & Mary Business Law Review

Virginia and Delaware have different approaches to a director’s fiduciary duties. The Virginia Stock Corporation Act imposes a deferential subjective standard of conduct that allows the more-frequent application of its business judgment rule. Virginia courts have followed the Virginia Stock Corporation Act and have shown even more deference to the decisions of directors than the Virginia Stock Corporation Act may require. In addition, Virginia courts have been reluctant to hold that additional constituencies, beyond the corporation and shareholders as a class, are owed fiduciary duties. Finally, Virginia courts have not imposed “enhanced scrutiny” on the decisions of directors involving ...