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Full-Text Articles in Law

Modular Bankruptcy: Toward A Consumer Scheme Of Arrangement, John A. E. Pottow Aug 2023

Modular Bankruptcy: Toward A Consumer Scheme Of Arrangement, John A. E. Pottow

Law & Economics Working Papers

The world of international bankruptcy has seen increasing use of the versatile scheme of arrangement, a form of corporate reorganization available under English law. A key feature of the scheme is its modularity, whereby a debtor can restructure only a single class of debt, such as bond indentures, without affecting other debt, such as trade. This is the opposite of chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code’s comprehensive reckoning of all financial stakeholders. This article considers a novel idea: could the scheme be transplanted into the consumer realm? It argues that it could and should. Substantial benefits of more individually …


Teaching Slavery In Commercial Law, Carliss N. Chatman Apr 2023

Teaching Slavery In Commercial Law, Carliss N. Chatman

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

Public status shapes private ordering. Personhood status, conferred or acknowledged by the state, determines whether one is a party to or the object of a contract. For much of our nation’s history, the law deemed all persons of African descent to have a limited status, if given personhood at all. The property and partial personhood status of African-Americans, combined with standards developed to facilitate the growth of the international commodities market for products including cotton, contributed to the current beliefs of business investors and even how communities of color are still governed and supported. The impact of that shift in …


Modernizing Notice Of Breach Rules To Preserve Contract Remedies, Stephen Plass Jan 2023

Modernizing Notice Of Breach Rules To Preserve Contract Remedies, Stephen Plass

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

Recently, the legal community has scrutinized the capacity of mandatory arbitration rules to deter or foreclose claims for breach of contract. But little attention has been paid to express and constructive notice of breach rules that are just as effective at foreclosing contractual remedies. While four-year statutes of limitations are typically viewed as the default cutoff time for breach of contract claims, contracting parties, particularly buyers of goods, must act much sooner to preserve their legal remedies. It is now common practice for sellers to require notice of breach within days or weeks of their performance as an express condition …


Liability For Non-Disclosure In Equity Financing, Albert H. Choi, Kathryn E. Spier Apr 2022

Liability For Non-Disclosure In Equity Financing, Albert H. Choi, Kathryn E. Spier

Law & Economics Working Papers

The paper analyzes the effects of holding firms liable for non-disclosure of material information when raising capital. We develop a model in which a privately-informed entrepreneur can choose to withhold information from prospective investors when issuing and selling stock and the investors can bring suit against the firm ex post for (alleged) non-disclosure. The damage payment received by the investors is partially offset by the reduced value of their equity stake. The analysis shows that the equilibrium depends on, among others, (1) the amount of personal capital the entrepreneur has to commit, (2) the frequency with which the entrepreneur is …


Why Can't I Get Pliny The Elder? Beer Distribution Law In Michigan, Kincaid C. Brown Jan 2022

Why Can't I Get Pliny The Elder? Beer Distribution Law In Michigan, Kincaid C. Brown

Law Librarian Scholarship

If you are a craft beer drinker, you have noticed that there are many beers brewed in the United States that you cannot buy in Michigan, like California-based Pliny the Elder. You will have also noticed that there are many craft beers brewed in Michigan that you cannot buy at your local grocery store or bottle shop. Why is that the case? The short answer is because Michigan law mandates that beer pass through what’s known as a three-tier distribution system. This article outlines what a three-tier distribution is, what it means for Michigan brewers and beer drinkers,


Contract Design When Relationship-Specific Investment Produces Asymmetric Information, Albert H. Choi, George Triantis Jun 2021

Contract Design When Relationship-Specific Investment Produces Asymmetric Information, Albert H. Choi, George Triantis

Articles

Under conventional contract theory, contracts may be efficient by protecting relationship specific investment from holdup in subsequent (re)negotiation over terms of trade. This paper demonstrates a different problem when specific investment also provides significant private information to the investing party. This is fairly common: for example, a manufacturer invests to learn about its buyer's idiosyncratic needs or a collaborator invests to learn about a joint venture. We show how such private information can lead to subsequent bargaining failure and suboptimal ex ante relationship-specific investment. We also show that this inefficiency is worse if the parties enter into a binding and …


Fair Lending For Cannabis Banking Justice, Benjamin T. Seymour Jun 2021

Fair Lending For Cannabis Banking Justice, Benjamin T. Seymour

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform Caveat

This Comment offers a fair lending solution to promote racial equity in cannabis banking reform: amend the Equal Credit Opportunity Act to ensure individuals previously arrested, charged, or convicted for selling, cultivating, or possessing marijuana will not therefore be precluded from loans to start legal cannabis businesses. Given disparities in the criminal enforcement of marijuana laws, this amendment would provide racial justice benefits, while also encouraging entrepreneurship. As a market-based social justice effort, this amendment offers a bipartisan approach to one of the most vexing and contentious issues in marijuana banking reform.

Part II of this Comment briefly surveys the …


Class Actions And Private Antitrust Litigation, Albert H. Choi, Kathryn E. Sprier Sep 2020

Class Actions And Private Antitrust Litigation, Albert H. Choi, Kathryn E. Sprier

Law & Economics Working Papers

When firms collude and charge supra-competitive prices, consumers can bring antitrust lawsuits against the firms. When the litigation cost is low, firms accept the cost as just another cost of doing business, whereas when the cost is high, the firms lower the price to deter litigation. Class action is modeled as a mechanism that allows plaintiffs and attorneys to obtain economies of scale. We show that class actions, and the firms' incentive to block them, may or may not be socially desirable. Agency problems, settlement, fee-shifting, treble damages, public enforcement, and sustaining collusion through repeat play are also considered.


Identifying Fundamental Breach Of Articles 25 And 49 Of The Cisg: The Good Faith Duty Of Collaborative Efforts To Cure Defects - Make The Parties Draw A Line In The Sand Of Substantiality, Yasutoshi Ishida Jan 2020

Identifying Fundamental Breach Of Articles 25 And 49 Of The Cisg: The Good Faith Duty Of Collaborative Efforts To Cure Defects - Make The Parties Draw A Line In The Sand Of Substantiality, Yasutoshi Ishida

Michigan Journal of International Law

Article 49(1) of the CISG allows buyers of international goods to avoid their sales contracts “if the failure by the seller to perform . . . amounts to a fundamental breach.” A breach is “fundamental,” as defined by CISG article 25, when it causes the buyer such detriment “as substantially to deprive him of what he is entitled to expect under the contract.” This definition is followed by the so-called “foreseeability test,” an “unless” clause that excepts the situation where “the party in breach did not foresee[,] and a reasonable person of the same kind in the same circumstances would …


Ecosystem Competition And The Antitrust Laws, Daniel A. Crane Oct 2019

Ecosystem Competition And The Antitrust Laws, Daniel A. Crane

Articles

Conventional antitrust norms analyze market power—as a stepping stone to anticompetitive effects and, hence, prohibited conduct—from the perspective of product substitutability. Two goods or services are said to compete with one another when they are reasonably interchangeable from the perspective of consumers, or to put it in more formal economic terms, when there is cross-elasticity of demand between them. Conversely, when two goods or services are not reasonably interchangeable, they are not horizontally related and are said not to compete with one another. Since a concern over horizontal agreements and horizontal effects dominate antitrust—courts even analyze vertical agreement or merger …


The Use Of Soft Law In The Creation Of Legal Norms In International Commercial Law: How Successful Has It Been?, Henry Deeb Gabriel May 2019

The Use Of Soft Law In The Creation Of Legal Norms In International Commercial Law: How Successful Has It Been?, Henry Deeb Gabriel

Michigan Journal of International Law

In this Article, I examine several interrelated points. After defining soft law in Part II, I briefly set out some of the assumed advantages soft law instruments may have over legislation and regulations in Part III. In Part IV, I examine why some soft law instruments in international commercial law have been successful in creating international legal norms. In this Part, I specifically examine the UNIDROIT Principles of International Commercial Contracts to show how one might gauge success by looking beyond the express purpose of the instrument. I also compare the UNIDROIT Principles of Commercial Contracts with the American Law …


Digital Market Perfection, Rory Van Loo Jan 2019

Digital Market Perfection, Rory Van Loo

Michigan Law Review

Google’s, Apple’s, and other companies’ automated assistants are increasingly serving as personal shoppers. These digital intermediaries will save us time by purchasing grocery items, transferring bank accounts, and subscribing to cable. The literature has only begun to hint at the paradigm shift needed to navigate the legal risks and rewards of this coming era of automated commerce. This Article begins to fill that gap by surveying legal battles related to contract exit, data access, and deception that will determine the extent to which automated assistants are able to help consumers to search and switch, potentially bringing tremendous societal benefits. Whereas …


Soft And Hard Strategies: The Role Of Business In The Crafting Of International Commercial Law, Susan Block-Lieb Jan 2019

Soft And Hard Strategies: The Role Of Business In The Crafting Of International Commercial Law, Susan Block-Lieb

Michigan Journal of International Law

What motivates the choice between hard and soft law in the drafting of international commercial law, and what role does business play in the preference between the two? Broad disagreement exists in international law (IL) commentary as to motivations for reliance on soft international law. Traditionally, this commentary cast a wide gaze across both international public and private law, but debate about the use of hard or soft law is sharpened by focusing exclusively on international commercial lawmaking. Traditionally, IL commentary considered only on states' interests in crafting international law and ignored business interests. But recent scholarship has begun to …


Intellectual Property In Experience, Madhavi Sunder Jan 2018

Intellectual Property In Experience, Madhavi Sunder

Michigan Law Review

In today’s economy, consumers demand experiences. From Star Wars to Harry Potter, fans do not just want to watch or read about their favorite characters— they want to be them. They don the robes of Gryffindor, flick their wands, and drink the butterbeer. The owners of fantasy properties understand this, expanding their offerings from light sabers to the Galaxy’s Edge®, the new Disney Star Wars immersive theme park opening in 2019.Since Star Wars, Congress and the courts have abetted what is now a $262 billion-a-year industry in merchandising, fashioning “merchandising rights” appurtenant to copyrights and trademarks that give fantasy owners …


Understanding The Consumer Review Fairness Act Of 2016, Eric Goldman Nov 2017

Understanding The Consumer Review Fairness Act Of 2016, Eric Goldman

Michigan Telecommunications & Technology Law Review

Consumer reviews are vitally important to our modern economy. Markets become stronger and more efficient when consumers share their marketplace experiences and guide other consumers toward the best vendors and away from poor ones. Businesses recognize the importance of consumer reviews, and many businesses take numerous steps to manage how consumer reviews affect their public image. Unfortunately, in a misguided effort to control consumer reviews, some businesses have deployed contract provisions that ban or inhibit their consumers from reviewing them. I call those provisions “antireview clauses.”

Anti-review clauses distort the marketplace benefits society gets from consumer reviews by suppressing peer …


Paypal Is New Money: Extending Secondary Copyright Liability Safe Harbors To Online Payment Processors, Erika Douglas Nov 2017

Paypal Is New Money: Extending Secondary Copyright Liability Safe Harbors To Online Payment Processors, Erika Douglas

Michigan Telecommunications & Technology Law Review

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) has shaped the Internet as we know it. This legislation shields online service providers from secondary copyright infringement liability in exchange for takedown of infringing content of their users. Yet online payment processors, the backbone of $300 billion in U.S. e-commerce, are completely outside of the DMCA’s protection. This Article uses PayPal, the most popular online payment company in the U.S., to illustrate the growing risk of secondary liability for payment processors. First it looks at jurisprudence that expands secondary copyright liability online, and explains how it might be applied to PayPal. Then it …


Basel Iii And The Future Of Project Finance Funding, Tianze Ma Oct 2016

Basel Iii And The Future Of Project Finance Funding, Tianze Ma

Michigan Business & Entrepreneurial Law Review

This paper seeks to analyze the new requirements in the Basel III banking regulatory framework and explore their impact on commercial banks’ project finance portfolio. The paper begins with a general introduction of the Basel Accords, followed by an analysis of the changes in the Basel III requirements and their potential impact on project finance, in particular the effects of the liquidity coverage ratio (LCR) and the net stable funding ratio (NSFR). The paper ends with a discussion of alternative sources of project finance funding that emerged as a result of the new regulatory regime.


Consumer Preferences For Performance Defaults, Franklin G. Snyder, Ann M. Mirabito Oct 2016

Consumer Preferences For Performance Defaults, Franklin G. Snyder, Ann M. Mirabito

Michigan Business & Entrepreneurial Law Review

Commercial law in the United States is designed to facilitate private transactions, and thus to enforce the presumed intent of the parties, who generally are free to negotiate the terms they choose. But these contracts inevitably have gaps, both because the parties cannot anticipate every situation that might arise from their relationship, and because negotiation is not costless. When courts are faced with these gaps in a litigation context, they supply default terms to fill them. These defaults usually are set to reflect what courts believe similar parties would have agreed to if they had addressed the issue. These “majoritarian” …


Tesla, Dealer Franchise Laws, And The Politics Of Crony Capitalism, Daniel A. Crane Jan 2016

Tesla, Dealer Franchise Laws, And The Politics Of Crony Capitalism, Daniel A. Crane

Articles

Public choice theory has long proclaimed that business interests can capture regulatory processes to generate economic rents at the expense of consumers. Such political exploitation may go unnoticed and unchallenged for long time periods because, though the rents are captured by a relatively small number of individuals or firms, the costs are widely diffused over a large number of consumers. The triggering event to expose and mobilize opposition to the regulatory capture may not arise until a new technology seeks to challenge the incumbent technology, thus creating a motivated champion to expose and oppose the regulatory capture and advocate for …


Out Of Sight, Out Of Mind: Hidden Disclaimers And Ucc § 2-316’S Conspicuousness Requirement, Gavin Thole Sep 2015

Out Of Sight, Out Of Mind: Hidden Disclaimers And Ucc § 2-316’S Conspicuousness Requirement, Gavin Thole

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform Caveat

Money now, terms later” agreements, or rolling contracts, are commonplace in consumer transactions. Courts frequently allow these agreements to stand. But problems arise when product manufacturers disclaim a warranty that protects consumers, such as the implied warranty of merchantability, without disclosing the disclaimer upfront—effectively rendering the warranty useless. Suppose, for example, a consumer purchases a refrigerator or computer where the implied warranty of merchantability disclaimer is printed on the last page of a thick instruction booklet. The booklet is hidden deep inside the box, buried in a morass of cords and paperwork. The consumer has no way of knowing about …


Reasoned Awards In International Commercial Arbitration: Embracing And Exceeding The Common Law-Civil Law Dichotomy, S. I. Strong Sep 2015

Reasoned Awards In International Commercial Arbitration: Embracing And Exceeding The Common Law-Civil Law Dichotomy, S. I. Strong

Michigan Journal of International Law

Unlike many types of domestic arbitration where unreasoned awards (often called “standard awards”) are the norm, international commercial arbitration routinely requires arbitrators to produce fully reasoned awards. However, very little information exists as to what constitutes a reasoned award in the international commercial context or how to write such an award. This lacuna is extremely problematic given the ever-increasing number of international commercial arbitrations that arise every year and the significant individual and societal costs that can result from a badly written award. Although this Article is aimed primarily at specialists in international commercial arbitration, the material is also useful …


Installation Failure: How The Predominant Purpose Test Has Perpetuated Software’S Uncertain Legal Status Under The Uniform Commercial Code, Spencer Gottlieb Mar 2015

Installation Failure: How The Predominant Purpose Test Has Perpetuated Software’S Uncertain Legal Status Under The Uniform Commercial Code, Spencer Gottlieb

Michigan Law Review

Courts have struggled to uniformly classify software as a good or a service and have consequently failed to apply a consistent body of law in that domain. Instead, courts have relied on the predominant purpose test to determine whether the Uniform Commercial Code (“UCC”) or common law should apply to a given software contract. This test, designed for traditional goods and services that do not share software’s complexity or rapid advancement, has perpetuated the uncertainty surrounding software’s legal status. This Note proposes that courts adopt the substantial software test as an alternative to the predominant purpose test. Under this proposal, …


Stubborn Things: An Empirical Approach To Facts, Opinions, And The First Amendment, Daniel E. Herz-Roiphe Jan 2015

Stubborn Things: An Empirical Approach To Facts, Opinions, And The First Amendment, Daniel E. Herz-Roiphe

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

This essay offers an empirical approach to the problem, rooted in an argument that the underlying rationale for the fact/opinion distinction in compelled speech doctrine tells us something about how this distinction should be policed. Commercial speech enjoys protection by virtue of its value to listeners, it is from the listener's vantage point, then, that courts should assess whether a compelled disclosure is fact or opinion. And if we are interested in learning how disclosures will affect listeners, we might try asking them, just as courts adjudicating trademark suits frequently use consumer surveys to determine how customers understand the meaning …


Michigan Craft Beer Legislation, Kincaid C. Brown Jan 2015

Michigan Craft Beer Legislation, Kincaid C. Brown

Law Librarian Scholarship

Michigan is currently in the midst of a craft beer boom. The Michigan Brewers Guild’s member list includes more than 150 breweries and brewpubs brewing craft beer. Michigan’s craft beer industry is boosting the state’s economy. According to an analysis by the Brewers Association customized by the Michigan Brewers Guild, the craft beer industry is directly responsible for more than 5,000 Michigan jobs and contributes more than $277 million to the state’s economy and more than $144 million in wages.


Tesla And The Car Dealers' Lobby, Daniel A. Crane Jun 2014

Tesla And The Car Dealers' Lobby, Daniel A. Crane

Articles

Tesla Motors, the offspring of entrepreneur Elon Musk (who brought us Pay-Pal and SpaceX), is the most exciting automotive development in many decades and a marquee story of American technological dynamism and innovation. The company’s luxury electric cars have caused a sensation in the auto industry, including a review by Consumer Reports calling Tesla’s Model S the best car it ever tested. Despite the acclaim, Tesla faces enormous challenges Despite the acclaim, Tesla faces enormous challenges in penetrating an automotive market that has been dominated for a century by internal combustion engines. Not only must it build cars that customers …


The Unrelenting Libertarian Challenge To Public Accommodations Law, Samuel R. Bagenstos Jan 2014

The Unrelenting Libertarian Challenge To Public Accommodations Law, Samuel R. Bagenstos

Articles

There seems to be a broad consensus that Title II of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits race discrimination in “place[s] of public accommodation,” was a remarkable success. But the consensus is illusory. Laws prohibiting discrimination by public accommodations currently exist under a significant legal threat. And this threat is merely the latest iteration in the controversy over public accommodations laws that began as early as Reconstruction. This Article begins by discussing the controversy in the Reconstruction and Civil Rights Eras over the penetration of antidiscrimination principles into the realm of private businesses’ choice of customers. Although the …


Tesla And The Car Dealers’ Lobby, Daniel A. Crane Jan 2014

Tesla And The Car Dealers’ Lobby, Daniel A. Crane

Law & Economics Working Papers

Tesla Motors, the offspring of the South African-American entrepreneur Elon Musk who also brought us Pay-Pal and SpaceX, is the most exciting automotive development in many decades and a marquee story of American technological dynamism and innovation. The company’s luxury electric cars have caused a sensation in the auto industry, including a review by Consumer Reports calling Tesla’s Model S the best car it ever tested.

Tesla faces enormous challenges in penetrating an automotive market that has been dominated for a century by internal combustion engines. Not only must it build cars that customers want to drive (and, ultimately, produce …


Law-Enforcement Officers And Self-Help Repossession: A State-Action Approach, Aaron Loterstein May 2013

Law-Enforcement Officers And Self-Help Repossession: A State-Action Approach, Aaron Loterstein

Michigan Law Review

Repossession of secured collateral is a fundamental component of the consumer credit industry. The Uniform Commercial Code authorizes a secured party to engage in self-help repossession of secured collateral under section 9-609, so long as the repossession takes place without "breach of the peace." While that term is undefined, several courts have adopted a counterintuitive rule, holding that a law-enforcement officer's presence during a self-help repossession - regardless of purpose or level of involvement - creates a breach of the peace. The Official Comments to the Code have seemingly endorsed this position as well. This Note rejects the primary justifications …


Investing In Cannabis: Inconsistent Government Regulation And Constraints On Capital, Adrian A. Ohmer Jan 2013

Investing In Cannabis: Inconsistent Government Regulation And Constraints On Capital, Adrian A. Ohmer

Michigan Business & Entrepreneurial Law Review

This note’s focus is on the future of investing in the growing legalized cannabis industry. In Part II, it will provide a brief history of federal and state regulation of cannabis. Part III will discuss the current role of the federal government in regulating the cannabis industry. Part IV will explore the current avenues of access to capital for the cannabis industry. Lastly, Part V will provide suggestions for the federal government and state governments to reduce investment risk that exists in the cannabis industry.


Can Consumers Control Health-Care Costs?, Mark A. Hall, Carl E. Schneider Sep 2012

Can Consumers Control Health-Care Costs?, Mark A. Hall, Carl E. Schneider

Articles

The ultimate aim of health care policy is good care at good prices. Managed care failed to achieve this goal through influencing providers, so health policy has turned to the only market-based option left: treating patients like consumers. Health insurance and tax policy now pressure patients to spend their own money when they select health plans, providers, and treatments. Expecting patients to choose what they need at the price they want, consumerists believe that market competition will constrain costs while optimizing quality. This classic form of consumerism is today’s health policy watchword. This article evaluates consumerism and the regulatory mechanism …