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Full-Text Articles in Law

Enforcing Interstate Compacts In Federal Systems, Michael Osborn Mar 2022

Enforcing Interstate Compacts In Federal Systems, Michael Osborn

Indiana Journal of Constitutional Design

The central goal of a federal system is for local government units to retain degrees of independence, specifically over matters of importance to that local unit. A logical corollary to that independence is the ability for local units to negotiate and contract with other local units on matters of importance. Therefore, it is not surprising that almost every federal system allows, either implicitly or explicitly, member states to form binding compacts with other states, the union government, or municipalities.1 Some federal democracies even allow member states to compact with foreign governments. Furthermore, almost every federal constitution includes a provision ...


Developments In The Laws Affecting Electronic Payments And Financial Services, Sarah Jane Hughes, Stephen T. Middlebrook, Tom Kierner Jan 2022

Developments In The Laws Affecting Electronic Payments And Financial Services, Sarah Jane Hughes, Stephen T. Middlebrook, Tom Kierner

Articles by Maurer Faculty

The past year proved to be a busy period for the regulation of electronic payments and financial services. In this year’s survey, we discuss rulemakings, enforcement actions, and other litigation that has significantly impacted the law governing payments and financial services. Part II addresses the ongoing fight between federal and state authorities over which should properly regulate Fin- Tech entities and describes some new steps the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (“OCC”) has taken to assert its authority in this area. Part III details an enforcement action that California regulators took against a FinTech company they determined ...


Tax Now Or Tax Never: Political Optionality And The Case For Current-Assessment Tax Reform, David Gamage, John R. Brooks Jan 2022

Tax Now Or Tax Never: Political Optionality And The Case For Current-Assessment Tax Reform, David Gamage, John R. Brooks

Articles by Maurer Faculty

The U.S. income tax system is broken. Due to the realization doctrine and taxpayers’ consequent ability to defer taxation of gains, taxpayers can easily minimize or avoid the taxation of investment income, a failure that is magnified many times over when considering the ultra-wealthy. As a result, this small group of taxpayers commands an enormous share of national wealth yet pays paltry taxes relative to the economic income their wealth produces—a predicament that this Article condemns as being economically, politically, and socially harmful.

The conventional view among tax law experts has assumed that the problems created by the ...


Possessing Intangibles, João Marinotti Jan 2022

Possessing Intangibles, João Marinotti

Articles by Maurer Faculty

The concept of possession is currently considered inapplicable to intangible assets, whether data, cryptocurrency, or NFTs. Under this view, intangible assets categorically fall outside the purview of property law’s foundational doctrines. Such sweeping conclusions stem from a misunderstanding of the role of possession in property law. This Article refutes the idea that possession constitutes—or even requires—physical control by distinguishing possession from another foundational concept, that of thinghood. It highlights possession’s unique purpose within the property process: conveying the status of in rem claims. In property law, the concept of possession conveys to third parties the allocation ...


Promoting Regulatory Prediction, Jonathan S. Masur Jan 2022

Promoting Regulatory Prediction, Jonathan S. Masur

Indiana Law Journal

It is essential for environmental protection that private actors be able to anticipate government regulation. If, for instance, the Biden Administration is planning to tighten regulations of greenhouse gas emissions, it is imperative that private companies anticipate this regulatory change now, not a few years from now after they have constructed even more coal- and gas-fired power plants. Those additional power plants will mean more irreversible greenhouse gases, and these plants can be politically challenging to shutter once built. The point is general to private actors making decisions in the shadow of potential government regulation. Better information about future government ...


Stealing Organs?, Benjamin Mcmichael Jan 2022

Stealing Organs?, Benjamin Mcmichael

Indiana Law Journal

Every nine minutes, a new person joins a waitlist for an organ transplant, and every day, seventeen people die waiting for an organ that will never come. Because the need for organ transplants far outstrips the number of available organs, the policies and rules governing organ allocation in the United States are critically important and highly contentious. Recently, proponents of a new allocation system—one focused more on sharing organs across the nation instead of allocating organs primarily to local transplant candidates—have gained ground. Bolstered by two separate lawsuits in the past five years, advocates of greater national sharing ...


Cryptoassets And Their Regulation Under Uk And Eu Law In The Post-Brexit Uk, Sarah Jane Hughes, Sara Kobal Jun 2021

Cryptoassets And Their Regulation Under Uk And Eu Law In The Post-Brexit Uk, Sarah Jane Hughes, Sara Kobal

Articles by Maurer Faculty

Cryptoassets are used increasingly as stores of value, means of making payments in domestic and cross-border transactions(including person-to-person (“P2P”) payments), and as enterprise solutions for speedier execution of trades in financial instruments or other commerce. Their emergence from the work of Satoshi Nakamoto to real-world applications has prompted attention from legislatures, regulators including law enforcement agencies, service providers and adopters.

The UK, as well as other nations, has used its legislative and regulatory authority to attract crypto-businesses and other financial-services innovators to its shores. Because some nations seek to entice financial innovations and others remain sceptical, tensions will arise ...


No Teacher Left Behind: Reforming The Educators Expense Deduction, Mary Morris Apr 2021

No Teacher Left Behind: Reforming The Educators Expense Deduction, Mary Morris

Indiana Law Journal

American educators are notoriously overworked and underpaid. With high performance demands and near-stagnant pay, teachers tend to burn out quickly, which in turn negatively affects the quality of education that their students receive. This effect is most evident in Title I schools, public schools with low funding allocation and high concentrations of low-income students.

One of the benefits that teachers do receive is the Educators Expense Deduction, a federal income tax deduction permitting teachers to write off up to $250 of unreimbursed supplies purchased for the classroom. This deduction was codified in 2002 and has not been amended since, in ...


Tangibility As Technology, João Marinotti Jan 2021

Tangibility As Technology, João Marinotti

Articles by Maurer Faculty

Property law has traditionally relied on tangible boundaries to delineate legal thinghood and to inform the bounds of in rem rights and duties. Unfortunately, property doctrines have fossilized around tangibility, causing fragmentation in the legal treatment of digital assets. In the United States, for example, cryptocurrencies and non-fungible tokens (NFTs) may simultaneously be classified as commodities, securities, currencies, assets, or not property at all, depending on the jurisdiction, domain, or specific asset in question. This fragmented system of overlapping legal treatments increases the information cost of using digital assets, decreases efficiency, and ultimately hinders future innovation.

In this Article, I ...


Bursting The Auto Loan Bubble In The Wake Of Covid-19, Pamela Foohey Jan 2021

Bursting The Auto Loan Bubble In The Wake Of Covid-19, Pamela Foohey

Articles by Maurer Faculty

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, auto loans outstanding in the United States had soared to record highs. The boom in lending spanned new and used cars and traditional and subprime loans. With loan delinquencies also hitting new highs almost every quarter, predictions that the auto lending market could burst soon abounded. When the economy came to a grinding halt and unemployment skyrocketed in the wake of the pandemic, auto lenders knew they were facing a crisis. Throughout 2020, auto lenders granted more payment forbearances to consumers, while slashing interest rates on new loans. Auto manufacturers similarly made promises to buyers, such ...


Esg And Climate Change Blind Spots: Turning The Corner On Sec Disclosure, Cynthia A. Williams, Donna M. Nagy Jan 2021

Esg And Climate Change Blind Spots: Turning The Corner On Sec Disclosure, Cynthia A. Williams, Donna M. Nagy

Articles by Maurer Faculty

This article examines four areas in which the SEC, for more than a decade, resisted reform or impeded shareholders’ access to sought-after environmental, social, and governance (ESG) information. These areas are: (1) the SEC’s refusal to act on several rulemaking petitions submitted during the years 2009 to 2018, which called for expanded ESG disclosure; (2) the SEC’s grudging promulgation of rules concerning social disclosures as required by Congress in the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010; (3) the SEC’s 2020 revisions to SEC Rule 14a-8, which make the submission of shareholder proposals more difficult, thereby thwarting investor efforts to ...


Consumer Perceptions Of The Right To Repair, Aaron Perzanowski Jan 2021

Consumer Perceptions Of The Right To Repair, Aaron Perzanowski

Indiana Law Journal

Part I of this Article details the strategies upon which device makers rely to frustrate repair. Part II considers legislative interventions intended to push back on existing barriers to repair, with a particular focus on the set of bills introduced in state legislatures across the United States. Part III describes the results of a survey of more than 800 U.S. consumers, focusing on their expectations of and experiences with the repair of electronic devices. The legal and policy implications of those results are discussed in Part IV.


The Economic Case For Rewards Over Imprisonment, Brian D. Galle Jan 2021

The Economic Case For Rewards Over Imprisonment, Brian D. Galle

Indiana Law Journal

There seems to be a growing social consensus that the United States imprisons far too many people for far too long. But reform efforts have slowed in the face of a challenging question: How can we reduce reliance on prisons while still discouraging crime, particularly violent crime? Through the 1970s, social scientists believed the answer was an array of what I will call preventive benefits: drug and mental health treatment, housing, and even unconditional cash payments. But early evaluations of these programs failed to find much evidence that they were successful, confirming a then-developing economic theory that predicted the programs ...


Toward A Theory Of Intercountry Human Rights: Global Capitalism And The Rise And Fall Of Intercountry Adoption, Barbara Stark Oct 2020

Toward A Theory Of Intercountry Human Rights: Global Capitalism And The Rise And Fall Of Intercountry Adoption, Barbara Stark

Indiana Law Journal

This Article proposes another mechanism for enforcement, an alternative to self-serving domestic policing and weak international bureaucracy. “Intercountry,” as opposed to “international,” human rights would apply to specific rights in specific contexts and be enforceable through the legal mechanisms and other resources of the state parties that accepted them. Intercountry adoption is a useful context in which to consider this proposal for several reasons.

First, as a practical matter, there have probably never been more babies and children in orphanages, on the street, on the market, or on their own. Yet intercountry adoptions have declined to levels not seen for ...


Congressional Securities Trading, Gregory Shill Oct 2020

Congressional Securities Trading, Gregory Shill

Indiana Law Journal

The trading of stocks and bonds by Members of Congress presents several risks that warrant public concern. One is the potential for policy distortion: lawmakers' personal investments may influence their official acts. Another is a special case of a general problem: that of insiders exploiting access to confidential information for personal gain. In each case, the current framework which is based on common law fiduciary principles is a poor fit. Surprisingly, rules from a related context have been overlooked.

Like lawmakers, public company insiders such as CEOs frequently trade securities while in possession of confidential information. Those insiders' trades are ...


Patent Accidents: Questioning Strict Liability In Patent Law, Patrick R. Goold Oct 2020

Patent Accidents: Questioning Strict Liability In Patent Law, Patrick R. Goold

Indiana Law Journal

Accidental infringement of patent rights is a pervasive and growing problem in the Information Age. As IP rights proliferate and expand in scope, it is becoming increasingly easy for companies and individuals to inadvertently infringe patents. When such accidental infringement occurs, patent law holds the infringer strictly liable. This contrasts with many areas of tort law where defendants are only liable if they act negligently.

This Article questions the normative desirability of strict liability in patent law. Assuming the primary value of patent law is utilitarian, this Article poses the research question: what liability rule will maximize social welfare? This ...


Consent To Student Loan Bankruptcy Discharge, John P. Hunt Oct 2020

Consent To Student Loan Bankruptcy Discharge, John P. Hunt

Indiana Law Journal

As the Department of Education reconsiders its rules governing consent to discharge of federal student loans in bankruptcy, this Article argues for the first time that the Department should approach the problem specifically as an operator of programs to promote education and benefit students, rather than as an entity interested only in debt collection. This Article shows that the Department’s rules to date have treated whether to consent to discharge primarily as a pecuniary issue, without regard to the educational goals of the student loan programs. For example, the Department apparently has never considered whether making it difficult to ...


Mandatory Tax Penalty Insurance, Michael Abramowicz Oct 2020

Mandatory Tax Penalty Insurance, Michael Abramowicz

Indiana Law Journal

In a mandatory tax penalty insurance regime, taxpayers would be required to find insurers to certify portions of their tax returns. A certifying insurer would be subject to a governmental auditing regime insurers of randomly selected filings would pay an amount equal to the inverse of the selection probability multiplied by the underpayment, or they would receive money from the government in the case of overpayment. The insurers function as private auditors with no incentive to underestimate their customers' tax liability. Such a regime will consume real resources, ultimately paid by taxpayers, and thus should not be imposed universally. But ...


Blockchain Stock Ledgers, Kevin V. Tu Oct 2020

Blockchain Stock Ledgers, Kevin V. Tu

Indiana Law Journal

American corporate law contains a seemingly innocuous mandate. Corporations must maintain appropriate books and records, including a stock ledger with the corporation's shareholders and stock ownership. The importance of accurate stock ownership records is obvious. Corporations must know who owns each of its outstanding shares at any point in time. Among other things, this allows corporations to determine who receives dividends and who is entitled to vote. In theory, keeping accurate records of stock ownership should be a simple matter. But despite diligent efforts, serious share discrepancies plague corporations, and reconciliation is often functionally impossible. Doing so may require ...


Strategic Nonconformity To The Tcja, Part I: Personal Income Taxes, Darien Shanske, Adam Thimmesch, David Gamage Jul 2020

Strategic Nonconformity To The Tcja, Part I: Personal Income Taxes, Darien Shanske, Adam Thimmesch, David Gamage

Articles by Maurer Faculty

The dire revenue situation that COVID-19 has created for state and local governments is a well documented and looming reality for state legislatures. We and others have explored a variety of ways that states should respond to this crisis in prior articles as a part of Project SAFE (State Action in Fiscal Emergencies), an academic effort to help states weather the fiscal crisis by providing policy recommendations backed by research. We think, as do many others, that in the absence of sufficient federal action, the states should prioritize raising revenue through targeted taxes on economic actors that are best enduring ...


Conformity And State Income Taxes: Suggestions For The Crisis, David Gamage, Michael A. Livingston Jun 2020

Conformity And State Income Taxes: Suggestions For The Crisis, David Gamage, Michael A. Livingston

Articles by Maurer Faculty

To guarantee adequate revenue in the postCOVID-19 era, state governments should consider using all possible tools at their disposal. This article explains how and why state governments should evaluate their degree of conformity with federal tax changes in order to achieve this purpose.


Reforming State Corporate Income Taxes Can Yield Billions, Darien Shanske, Reuven S. Avi-Yonah, David Gamage Jun 2020

Reforming State Corporate Income Taxes Can Yield Billions, Darien Shanske, Reuven S. Avi-Yonah, David Gamage

Articles by Maurer Faculty

The federal government should be providing states and localities with hundreds of billions of dollars in aid. The arguments against such aid, including the claim that the states have somehow been profligate, do not stand up to scrutiny. Nevertheless, it seems unlikely that the federal government will do enough, and it is already the case that the federal government is acting too slowly. States and local governments, which generally operate under balanced budget constraints, are, accordingly, already making sweeping cuts4 that will deepen the recession and reduce services when they are most needed.

Rather than make these cuts, it would ...


The Third Age Of Oil And Gas Law, James Coleman Apr 2020

The Third Age Of Oil And Gas Law, James Coleman

Indiana Law Journal

History’s biggest oil boom is happening right now, in the United States, ushering in the third age of oil and gas law. The first age of oil and gas law also began in the United States a century ago when landowners and oil companies developed the oil and gas lease. The lease made the modern oil and gas industry possible and soon spread as the model for development around the world. In the second age of oil and gas law, landowners and nations across the globe developed new legal agreements that improved upon the lease and won these resource ...


The Replicability Crisis In Patent Law, Janet Freilich Apr 2020

The Replicability Crisis In Patent Law, Janet Freilich

Indiana Law Journal

There is a “replicability crisis” in the scientific literature. Scientists attempting to redo experiments in reputable, peer-reviewed journals have found that staggering numbers of these experiments—up to 90%—do not work. Patents, like scientific articles, contain experiments. These experiments often form the backbone of the patent and provide crucial support for patentability. Patent examiners use these experiments to evaluate whether the invention works, and thus whether the patent should be granted. The replicability crisis in the scientific literature is therefore of utmost importance to the patent system. Transferring the insights of the replicability crisis to patents begs the question ...


Contract Law’S Transferability Bias, Paul Macmahon Apr 2020

Contract Law’S Transferability Bias, Paul Macmahon

Indiana Law Journal

When A makes a contract with B, it comes as no surprise that she is liable to B. If B can transfer her contractual rights to C, A is now liable to C. Parties in A’s position often have strong reasons to avoid being liable to suit by C. Contract law, however, seems determined to minimize and override these concerns. Under current doctrine on the assignment of contractual rights—the focus of this Article—the law often imposes its own preference for transferability on the parties. The law generally assumes that contractual rights are assignable, construes exceptions to that ...


The Grip Of Nationalism On Corporate Law, Mariana Pargendler Apr 2020

The Grip Of Nationalism On Corporate Law, Mariana Pargendler

Indiana Law Journal

Part I provides a brief overview of the relationship between corporate law and nationalism and demonstrates their interaction in the historical experiences of several key jurisdictions. These vignettes are merely illustrative, but they indicate how deep the link between nationalism and corporate law can be. Part II summarizes the evidence on the economic effects of foreign corporate control, showing that it is ultimately inconclusive. Part III explains why corporate law can be an attractive instrument to accomplish nationalist objectives and explores the possible regulatory responses to this phenomenon. Part IV analyzes the implications of these findings for future developments in ...


A Case For Reforming The Anti-Money Laundering Regulatory Regime: How Financial Institutions’ Criminal Reporting Duties Have Created An Unfunded Private Police Force, Christopher Wilkes Apr 2020

A Case For Reforming The Anti-Money Laundering Regulatory Regime: How Financial Institutions’ Criminal Reporting Duties Have Created An Unfunded Private Police Force, Christopher Wilkes

Indiana Law Journal

Part I of this Note provides background information outlining the relevant BSA/AML laws that establish financial institutions’ affirmative duties to report financial crimes. Part II analyzes the contours of other laws that create mandatory criminal reporting obligations, including their extent, their underlying justifications, and how stringently government agencies enforce them. Part III demonstrates how financial institutions’ reporting duties are uniquely stringent and punitive compared to those imposed elsewhere in the law, and it questions the justifications of this policy. Lastly, Part IV of this Note argues that the BSA/AML regulatory regime could be reformed to reduce the costs ...


O Brother Where Art Thou? The Struggles Of African American Men In The Global Economy Of The Information Age, Kenneth G. Dau-Schmidt Jan 2020

O Brother Where Art Thou? The Struggles Of African American Men In The Global Economy Of The Information Age, Kenneth G. Dau-Schmidt

Indiana Journal of Law and Social Equality

As early as the late 1980’s, William Wilson argued that widespread economic transitions had altered the socioeconomic structure of American inner cities to the detriment of African Americans. Wilson identified declines in manufacturing work and its replacement with poorly compensated service sector work as driving racial segregation and leaving African Americans jobless, poor and alienated from American society. These transitions were particularly problematic for African American men since manufacturing work was their primary gateway to middle-class employment while African American women had already focused more on service work.

Since the initial exposition of Wilson’s theory of deindustrialization, Wilson ...


The Specific Consumer Expectations Test For Product Defects, Clayton J. Masterman, W. Kip Viscusi Jan 2020

The Specific Consumer Expectations Test For Product Defects, Clayton J. Masterman, W. Kip Viscusi

Indiana Law Journal

In this Article, we propose that courts adopt an amended version of the consumer expectations test that we call the “specific consumer expectations test.” The specific consumer expectations test would apply to any product or product component for which consumers have clear, articulable ex ante expectations about the function of the product. Under the specific consumer expectations test, a defendant is liable if consumers expected such a product to reduce a particular risk, and the product in fact increased that risk. Similarly, if a product was intended to convey a particular benefit, but in fact harmed consumers along the same ...


Speech Inequality After Janus V. Afscme, Charlotte Garden Jan 2020

Speech Inequality After Janus V. Afscme, Charlotte Garden

Indiana Law Journal

This Article explores the growing divide between the Roberts Court’s treatment of the free speech rights of wealthy individuals and corporations in campaign finance cases as compared to its treatment of the rights of public-sector labor unions and their members. First, it highlights some internal contradictions in the Janus Court’s analysis. Then, it discusses the growing—yet mostly ignored—divergence in the Court’s treatment of corporate and labor speakers with respect to the use of market influence to achieve political influence.

The Article has two Parts. In Part I, I explain how the Court reached its decision ...