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Full-Text Articles in Law

Lawyer As Soothsayer: Exploring The Important Role Of Outcome Prediction In The Practice Of Law, Mark K. Osbeck Dec 2018

Lawyer As Soothsayer: Exploring The Important Role Of Outcome Prediction In The Practice Of Law, Mark K. Osbeck

Articles

Outcome prediction has always been an important part of practicing law. Clients rely heavily on their attorneys to provide accurate assessments of the potential legal consequences they face when making important decisions (such as whether to accept a plea bargain, or risk a conviction on a much more serious offense at trial). And yet, notwithstanding its enormous importance to the practice of law (and notwithstanding the handsome legal fees it commands), outcome prediction in the law remains a very imprecise endeavor. The reason for this inaccuracy is that the three principal tools lawyers have traditionally relied on to facilitate outcome …


Universities: The Fallen Angels Of Bayh-Dole?, Rebecca S. Eisenberg, Robert Cook-Deegan Oct 2018

Universities: The Fallen Angels Of Bayh-Dole?, Rebecca S. Eisenberg, Robert Cook-Deegan

Articles

The Bayh-Dole Act of 1980 established a new default rule that allowed nonprofit organizations and small businesses to own, as a routine matter, patents on inventions resulting from research sponsored by the federal government. Although universities helped get the Bayh-Dole Act through Congress, the primary goal, as reflected in the recitals at the beginning of the new statute, was not to benefit universities but to promote the commercial development and utilization of federally funded inventions. In the years since the passage of the Bayh-Dole Act, universities seem to have lost sight of this distinction. Their behavior as patent seekers, patent …


Fourth Amendment Constraints On The Technological Monitoring Of Convicted Sex Offenders, Ben A. Mcjunkin, J. J. Prescott Jul 2018

Fourth Amendment Constraints On The Technological Monitoring Of Convicted Sex Offenders, Ben A. Mcjunkin, J. J. Prescott

Articles

More than forty U.S. states currently track at least some of their convicted sex offenders using GPS devices. Many offenders will be monitored for life. The burdens and expense of living indefinitely under constant technological monitoring have been well documented, but most commentators have assumed that these burdens were of no constitutional moment because states have characterized such surveillance as ‘‘civil’’ in character—and courts have seemed to agree. In 2015, however, the Supreme Court decided in Grady v. North Carolina that attaching a GPS monitoring device to a person was a Fourth Amendment search, notwithstanding the ostensibly civil character of …


Outcome Prediction In The Practice Of Law, Mark K. Osbeck, Michael Gilliland Jul 2018

Outcome Prediction In The Practice Of Law, Mark K. Osbeck, Michael Gilliland

Articles

Business forecasters typically use time-series models to predict future demands, the forecasts informing management decision making and guiding organizational planning. But this type of forecasting is merely a subset of the broader field of predictive analytics, models used by data scientists in all manner of applications, including credit approvals, fraud detection, product-purchase and music-listening recommendations, and even the real-time decisions made by self-driving vehicles. The practice of law requires decisions that must be based on predictions of future legal outcomes, and data scientists are now developing forecasting methods to support the process. In this article, Mark Osbeck and Mike Gilliland …


The Future Of Law And Mobility, Daniel A. Crane Jun 2018

The Future Of Law And Mobility, Daniel A. Crane

Articles

With the launch of the new Journal of Law and Mobility, the University of Michigan is recognizing the transformative impact of new transportation and mobility technologies, from cars, to trucks, to pedestrians, to drones. The coming transition towards intelligent, automated, and connected mobility systems will transform not only the way people and goods move about, but also the way human safety, privacy, and security are protected, cities are organized, machines and people are connected, and the public and private spheres are defined.


Suggestions For State Laws On Biosimilar Substitution, Gary M. Fox May 2018

Suggestions For State Laws On Biosimilar Substitution, Gary M. Fox

Michigan Telecommunications & Technology Law Review

Biologic drugs offer major advancements over small-molecule drugs when it comes to treating serious diseases. Biosimilars, which mimic innovative biologic drugs, have the potential to further revolutionize the practice of medicine. States now have decades of experience regulating the substitution of generic, small-molecule drugs for their brand-name equivalents. But the complexities of biologic drugs and biosimilars force states to confront novel scientific and legal issues. Many states have begun tackling those issues by passing laws that regulate when pharmacists may substitute biosimilars for their corresponding biologic drugs. Other states have yet to do so. This Note surveys five provisions common …


Tiny Things With A Huge Impact: The International Regulation Of Nanomaterials, Dario Picecchi May 2018

Tiny Things With A Huge Impact: The International Regulation Of Nanomaterials, Dario Picecchi

Michigan Journal of Environmental & Administrative Law

Mounting evidence demonstrates that nanotechnology and nanomaterials impose severe environmental risks. To minimize these risks, the usage and handling of certain nanomaterials could be addressed under existing treaties such as the Rotterdam Convention, the Stockholm Convention, and the Basel Convention. However, even if existing treaties govern the handling of certain nanomaterials, no treaty effectively regulates all the specific challenges that nanomaterials pose to the global environment. Consequently, a completely new regulatory instrument is required. An international organization could take responsibility for developing and promoting such a nanospecific international legal framework. By incorporating the precautionary principle, a technology transfer, research cooperation, …


Controlling The Jury-Teaching Function, Richard D. Friedman Apr 2018

Controlling The Jury-Teaching Function, Richard D. Friedman

Articles

When evidence with a scientific basis is offered, two fundamental questions arise. First, should it be admitted? Second, if so, how should it be assessed? There are numerous participants who might play a role in deciding these questions—the jury (on the second question only), the parties (through counsel), expert witnesses on each side, the trial court, the forces controlling the judicial system (which include, but are not limited to, the appellate courts), and the scientific establishment. In this Article, I will suggest that together, the last two—the forces controlling the judicial system and the scientific establishment—have a large role to …


Beyond Rights And Welfare: Democracy, Dialogue, And The Animal Welfare Act, Jessica Eisen Apr 2018

Beyond Rights And Welfare: Democracy, Dialogue, And The Animal Welfare Act, Jessica Eisen

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

The primary frameworks through which scholars have conceptualized legal protections for animals—animal “rights” and animal “welfare”—do not account for socio-legal transformation or democratic dialogue as central dynamics of animal law. The animal “rights” approach focuses on the need for limits or boundaries preventing animal use, while the animal “welfare” approach advocates balancing harm to animals against human benefits from animal use. Both approaches rely on abstract accounts of the characteristics animals are thought to share with humans and the legal protections they are owed as a result of those traits. Neither offers sustained attention to the dynamics of legal change …


Exclusion In Digital Markets, Konstantinos Stylianou Jan 2018

Exclusion In Digital Markets, Konstantinos Stylianou

Michigan Telecommunications & Technology Law Review

This article recasts the existing analytical framework on exclusion to account for the technology-intensive nature of digital markets. It discusses:

a) technological ways that affect the competitive intensity in digital markets
b) empirical data on the durability of competitive advantage in digital markets, and
c) the nature of exclusion as a monopolization tactic from a technological point of view

The technology element is important because as a matter of order it is technological capabilities and limitations that define what the transactional overlay can be, not the other way around. Economists start from the pre-assumption that “in the beginning there [are] …


The Uneasy Case For Patent Law, Rachel E. Sachs Jan 2018

The Uneasy Case For Patent Law, Rachel E. Sachs

Michigan Law Review

A central tenet of patent law scholarship holds that if any scientific field truly needs patents to stimulate progress, it is pharmaceuticals. Patents are thought to be critical in encouraging pharmaceutical companies to develop and commercialize new therapies, due to the high costs of researching diseases, developing treatments, and bringing drugs through the complex, expensive approval process. Scholars and policymakers often point to patent law’s apparent success in the pharmaceutical industry to justify broader calls for more expansive patent rights.

This Article challenges this conventional wisdom about the centrality of patents to drug development by presenting a case study of …


Work Only We Can Do: Professional Responsibility In An Age Of Automation, Sherman J. Clark Jan 2018

Work Only We Can Do: Professional Responsibility In An Age Of Automation, Sherman J. Clark

Articles

Automation can help us do our work as lawyers; but in the process, it should also force us to be more thoughtful about what our work really is or ought to be.' The challenge for the profession, as I see it, is not simply to survive the advent of new technology, nor even merely to make effective use of new tools. While addressing those immediate concerns, we should also welcome the concomitant opportunity to develop and refine our understanding of what it means to be a good and ethical lawyer. As technological developments free us from and prevent us from …


The Commodification Of Cryptocurrency, Neil Tiwari Jan 2018

The Commodification Of Cryptocurrency, Neil Tiwari

Michigan Law Review

Cryptocurrencies are digital tokens built on blockchain technology. This allows for a product that is fully decentralized, with no need for a third-party intermediary like a government or financial institution. Cryptocurrency creators use initial coin offerings (ICOs) to raise capital to build their tokens. Cryptocurrency ICOs are problematic because they do not fit neatly within either of two traditional categories—securities or commodities. Each of these categories has their own regulatory agency: the SEC for securities and the CFTC for commodities. At first blush, ICOs seem to be a sale of securities subject to regulation by the SEC, but this is …


Assessing Access-To-Justice Outreach Strategies, J. J. Prescott Jan 2018

Assessing Access-To-Justice Outreach Strategies, J. J. Prescott

Articles

The need for prospective beneficiaries to “take up” new programs is a common stumbling block for otherwise well-designed legal and policy innovations. I examine the take-up problem in the context of publicly provided court services and test the effectiveness of various outreach strategies that announce a newly available online court access platform. I study individuals with minor arrest warrants whose distrust of courts may dampen any take-up response. I partnered with a court to quasi-randomly assign outreach approaches to a cohort of individuals and find that outreach improves take-up, that the type of outreach matters, and that online platform access …


Cabining Judicial Discretion Over Forensic Evidence With A New Special Relevance Rule, Emma F.E. Shoucair Jan 2018

Cabining Judicial Discretion Over Forensic Evidence With A New Special Relevance Rule, Emma F.E. Shoucair

Michigan Law Review

Modern forensic evidence suffers from a number of flaws, including insufficient scientific grounding, exaggerated testimony, lack of uniform best practices, and an inefficacious standard for admission that regularly allows judges to admit scientifically unsound evidence. This Note discusses these problems, lays out the current landscape of forensic science reform, and suggests the addition of a new special relevance rule to the Federal Rules of Evidence (and similar rules in state evidence codes). This proposed rule would cabin judicial discretion to admit non-DNA forensic evidence by barring prosecutorial introduction of such evidence in criminal trials absent a competing defense expert or …


Scientific Trials--In The Laboratories, Not The Courts, Nicholas Bagley, Aaron E. Carroll, Pieter A. Cohen Jan 2018

Scientific Trials--In The Laboratories, Not The Courts, Nicholas Bagley, Aaron E. Carroll, Pieter A. Cohen

Articles

In 2015, one of us published a peer-reviewed study, together with colleagues at the University of California, San Francisco, replicating prior research from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) detecting a designer stimulant, β-methylphenylethylamine, in sports, weight loss, and “cognitive function” supplements sold in the United States. The confirmatory study prompted the FDA to take enforcement action against companies selling the stimulant as a dietary ingredient. One of the companies that received an FDA warning letter sued the study’s authors for $200 million in damages for libel, claiming, without supporting scientific evidence, that multiple statements in the article were …