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Full-Text Articles in Law

Moving Beyond Lassiter: The Need For A Federal Statutory Right To Counsel For Parents In Child Welfare Cases, Vivek S. Sankaran Dec 2017

Moving Beyond Lassiter: The Need For A Federal Statutory Right To Counsel For Parents In Child Welfare Cases, Vivek S. Sankaran

Articles

In New York City, an indigent parent can receive the assistance of a multidisciplinary legal team—an attorney, a social worker, and a parent advocate—to defend against the City’s request to temporarily remove a child from her care. But in Mississippi, that same parent can have her rights to her child permanently terminated without ever receiving the assistance of a single lawyer. In Washington State, the Legislature has ensured that parents ensnared in child abuse and neglect proceedings will receive the help of a well-trained and well-compensated attorney with a reasonable caseload. Yet in Tennessee, its Supreme Court ...


Criminal Certification: Restoring Comity In The Categorical Approach, Joshua Rothenberg Nov 2017

Criminal Certification: Restoring Comity In The Categorical Approach, Joshua Rothenberg

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

Federal sentencing enhancements force federal courts to delve into the world of substantive state criminal law. Does a state assault statute require violent force or just offensive touching? Does a state burglary statute that criminalizes breaking into a car or a house require prosecutors to charge the location entered as an element? Whether a person with prior convictions convicted of violating 18 U.S.C. § 922(g) faces a minimum sentence of fifteen years and a maximum of life imprisonment rather than a maximum sentence of ten years turns upon the answers to these questions. Yet, state law often does ...


Corpus Linguistics: Misfire Or More Ammo For The Ordinary - Meaning Canon?, John D. Ramer Nov 2017

Corpus Linguistics: Misfire Or More Ammo For The Ordinary - Meaning Canon?, John D. Ramer

Michigan Law Review

Scholars and judges have heralded corpus linguistics—the study of language through collections of spoken or written texts—as a novel tool for statutory interpretation that will help provide an answer in the occasionally ambiguous search for “ordinary meaning” using dictionaries. In the spring of 2016, the Michigan Supreme Court became the first to use corpus linguistics in a majority opinion. The dissent also used it, however, and the two opinions reached different conclusions. In the first true test for corpus linguistics, the answer seemed to be just as ambiguous as before.

This result calls into question the utility of ...


Improving Access To Justice In State Courts With Platform Technology, J. J. Prescott Nov 2017

Improving Access To Justice In State Courts With Platform Technology, J. J. Prescott

Articles

Access to justice often equates to access to state courts, and for millions of Americans, using state courts to resolve their disputes—often with the government—is a real challenge. Reforms are regularly proposed in the hopes of improving the situation (e.g., better legal aid), but until recently a significant part of the problem has been structural. Using state courts today for all but the simplest of legal transactions entails at the very least traveling to a courthouse and meeting with a decision maker in person and in a one-on-one setting. Even minimally effective access, therefore, requires time, transportation ...


Defense Counsel And Public Defence, Eve Brensike Primus Nov 2017

Defense Counsel And Public Defence, Eve Brensike Primus

Book Chapters

Public-defense delivery systems nationwide are grossly inadequate. Public defenders are forced to handle caseloads that no one could effectively manage. They often have no funding for investigation or expert assistance. They aren’t adequately trained, and there is little to no oversight of their work. In many jurisdictions, the public-defense function is not sufficiently independent of the judiciary or the elected branches to allow for zealous representation. The result is an assembly line into prison, mostly for poor people of color, with little check on the reliability or fairness of the process. Innocent people are convicted, precious resources are wasted ...


Chevron In The Circuit Courts, Kent Barnett, Christopher J. Walker Oct 2017

Chevron In The Circuit Courts, Kent Barnett, Christopher J. Walker

Michigan Law Review

This Article presents findings from the most comprehensive empirical study to date on how the federal courts of appeals have applied Chevrondeference— the doctrine under which courts defer to a federal agency’s reasonable interpretation of an ambiguous statute that it administers. Based on 1,558 agency interpretations the circuit courts reviewed from 2003 through 2013 (where they cited Chevron), we found that the circuit courts overall upheld 71% of interpretations and applied Chevrondeference 77% of the time. But there was nearly a twenty-five-percentage-point difference in agency-win rates when the circuit courts applied Chevrondeference than when they ...


Internal Administrative Law, Gillian E. Metzger, Kevin M. Stack Jun 2017

Internal Administrative Law, Gillian E. Metzger, Kevin M. Stack

Michigan Law Review

For years, administrative law has been identified as the external review of agency action, primarily by courts. Following in the footsteps of pioneering administrative law scholars, a growing body of recent scholarship has begun to attend to the role of internal norms and structures in controlling agency action. This Article offers a conceptual and historical account of these internal forces as internal administrative law. Internal administrative law consists of the internal directives, guidance, and organizational forms through which agencies structure the discretion of their employees and presidents control the workings of the executive branch. It is the critical means for ...


Making Treaty Implementation More Like Statutory Implementation, Jean Galbraith Jun 2017

Making Treaty Implementation More Like Statutory Implementation, Jean Galbraith

Michigan Law Review

Both statutes and treaties are the “supreme law of the land,” and yet quite different practices have developed with respect to their implementation. For statutes, all three branches have embraced the development of administrative law, which allows the executive branch to translate broad statutory directives into enforceable obligations. But for treaties, there is a far more cumbersome process. Unless a treaty provision contains language that courts interpret to be directly enforceable, they will deem it to require implementing legislation from Congress. This Article explores and challenges the perplexing disparity between the administration of statutes and treaties. It shows that the ...


Timely Permanency Or Unnecessary Removal?: Tips For Advocates For Children Who Spend Less Than 30 Days In Foster Care, Christopher Church, Monique Mitchell, Vivek Sankaran Jun 2017

Timely Permanency Or Unnecessary Removal?: Tips For Advocates For Children Who Spend Less Than 30 Days In Foster Care, Christopher Church, Monique Mitchell, Vivek Sankaran

Articles

Removal and placement in foster care is child welfare’s most severe intervention, contemplated as “a last resort rather than the first.” Federal law, with an overarching goal of preventing unnecessary removals, bolsters this principle by requiring juvenile and family courts to carefully oversee the removal of children to foster care. Expansive research reminds the field that removal, while often necessary, is not a benign intervention. Physically, legally, and emotionally separating children from their parent(s) can traumatize children in lasting ways. Yet review of federal data concerning children in foster care reveal a troubling narrative: each year, tens of ...


Rethinking Criminal Contempt, John A.E. Pottow, Jason S. Levin May 2017

Rethinking Criminal Contempt, John A.E. Pottow, Jason S. Levin

Articles

It is of course too early to tell whether we are in a new era of bankruptcy judge (dis)respectability. Only time will tell. But this Article performs a specific case study, on one discrete area of bankruptcy court authority, based upon a particular assumption in that regard. The assumption is this: certain high-salience judicial events-here, the recent Supreme Court bankruptcy judge decisions, coupled with earlier constitutional precedents involving the limits of Article III-can trigger overreaction and hysteria. Lower courts may read these Supreme Court decisions as calling into question the permissibility of certain bankruptcy court practices under the Constitution ...


Factors In Fairness And Emotion In Online Case Resolution Systems, Youyang Hou, Cliff Lampe, Maximilian Bulinski, J. J. Prescott May 2017

Factors In Fairness And Emotion In Online Case Resolution Systems, Youyang Hou, Cliff Lampe, Maximilian Bulinski, J. J. Prescott

Articles

Courts are increasingly adopting online information and communication technology, creating a need to consider the potential consequences of these tools for the justice system. Using survey responses from 209 litigants who had recently used an online case resolution system, we investigate factors that influenced litigants’ experiences of fairness and emotional feelings toward court officials. Our results show that ease of using the online case resolution system, the outcome of the case, and a litigant’s perceptions of procedural justice are positively associated both with whether the litigant views the process as fair and whether the litigant ultimately feels positive emotions ...


Remedial Restraint In Administrative Law, Nicholas Bagley Apr 2017

Remedial Restraint In Administrative Law, Nicholas Bagley

Articles

When a court determines that an agency action violates the Administrative Procedure Act, the conventional remedy is to invalidate the action and remand to the agency. Only rarely do the courts entertain the possibility of holding agency errors harmless. The courts’ strict approach to error holds some appeal: Better a hard rule that encourages procedural fastidiousness than a remedial standard that might tempt agencies to cut corners. But the benefits of this rule-bound approach are more elusive, and the costs much larger, than is commonly assumed. Across a wide range of cases, the reflexive invalidation of agency action appears wildly ...


Substantial Similarity: Kohus Got It Right, Gabriel Godoy-Dalmau Apr 2017

Substantial Similarity: Kohus Got It Right, Gabriel Godoy-Dalmau

Michigan Business & Entrepreneurial Law Review

This Note is organized as follows. Part I discusses the historical development of the substantial similarity inquiry and its role in a Plaintiff’s prima facie case of copyright infringement. Part II evaluates more recent developments in the substantial similarity inquiry. Part III argues that the various standards that lower courts have developed are themselves substantially similar to each other. This analysis is in line with the Sixth Circuit’s decision in Kohus. Although largely ignored by the scholarly community, the Sixth Circuit’s decision in Kohus got it right.


Gaars And The Nexus Between Statutory Interpretation And Legislative Drafting: Lessons For The U.S. From Canada, Reuven S. Avi-Yonah, Amir Pichhadze Mar 2017

Gaars And The Nexus Between Statutory Interpretation And Legislative Drafting: Lessons For The U.S. From Canada, Reuven S. Avi-Yonah, Amir Pichhadze

Articles

Rules targeting specific known schemes are not the only tools available in the battle against tax avoidance. Legal systems also use measures that apply generally. The U.S. for example has tended to rely heavily on general doctrines. One such doctrine which is discussed in part 2 of this chapter is the “economic substance” doctrine. Yet as Xiong and Evans recently pointed out “although such judicial doctrines can be used to deal with various aspects of complicated tax abuse judges tended sometimes to limit and sometimes to enlarge the scope of jurisprudential interpretation leading to substantial uncertainty and risk.” One ...


Race And Wrongful Convictions In The United States, Samuel R. Gross, Maurice Possley, Klara Stephens Mar 2017

Race And Wrongful Convictions In The United States, Samuel R. Gross, Maurice Possley, Klara Stephens

Other Publications

African Americans are only 13% of the American population but a majority of innocent defendants wrongfully convicted of crimes and later exonerated. They constitute 47% of the 1,900 exonerations listed in the National Registry of Exonerations (as of October 2016), and the great majority of more than 1,800 additional innocent defendants who were framed and convicted of crimes in 15 large-scale police scandals and later cleared in “group exonerations.” We see this racial disparity for all major crime categories, but we examine it in this report in the context of the three types of crime that produce the ...


Rethinking Criminal Contempt In The Bankruptcy Courts, John A. E. Pottow, Jason S. Levin Mar 2017

Rethinking Criminal Contempt In The Bankruptcy Courts, John A. E. Pottow, Jason S. Levin

Law & Economics Working Papers

A surprising number of courts believe that bankruptcy judges lack authority to impose criminal contempt sanctions. We attempt to rectify this misunderstanding with a march through the historical treatment of contempt-like powers in bankruptcy, the painful statutory history of the 1978 Bankruptcy Code (including the exciting history of likely repealed 28 U.S.C. § 1481), and the various apposite rules of procedure. (Fans of the All Writs Act will delight in its inclusion.) But the principal service we offer to the bankruptcy community is dismantling the ubiquitous and persistent belief that there is some form of constitutional infirmity with "mere ...


Police Interrogations, False Confessions, And Alleged Child Abuse Cases, Richard Leo Mar 2017

Police Interrogations, False Confessions, And Alleged Child Abuse Cases, Richard Leo

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

A discussion on false confession cases in the United States.


Reforming Sec Alj Proceedings, Joanna Howard Mar 2017

Reforming Sec Alj Proceedings, Joanna Howard

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

This Note considers the current constitutional challenges to SEC administrative proceedings and suggests process reforms to enhance fairness for respondents. Challenges have developed since the Dodd-Frank Act expanded the SEC’s ability to use administrative proceedings. Arguments that there is a pre-existing flaw in the method of appointing administrative law judges provide the most potential for success. The Tenth Circuit’s December 2016 decision against the SEC in Bandimere has created a split, diverging from the D.C. Circuit’s analysis of that question in Lucia. Resolution by the Supreme Court may be inevitable. Even if the challengers do ultimately ...


The Gibbons Fallacy, Richard A. Primus Mar 2017

The Gibbons Fallacy, Richard A. Primus

Articles

In Gibbons v. Ogden, Chief Justice John Marshall famously wrote that "the enumeration presupposes something not enumerated." Modern courts use that phrase to mean that the Constitutions enumeration of congressional powers indicates that those powers are, as a whole, less than a grant of general legislative authority. But Marshall wasn't saying that. He wasn't talking about the Constitution's overall enumeration of congressional powers at all. He was writing about a different enumeration - the enumeration of three classes of commerce within the Commerce Clause. And Marshall's analysis of the Commerce Clause in Gibbons does not imply that ...


Speaking Law: Towards A Nuanced Analysis Of 'Cases', Susanne Baer Mar 2017

Speaking Law: Towards A Nuanced Analysis Of 'Cases', Susanne Baer

Articles

“The headscarf case” is more than just a case. Talking law is often talking cases, but we need to understand law more specifically as a powerful practice of regulation. Law is also not only another discourse, or just text, or politics, with fundamental rights as “an issue,” or a promise, or just an idea. Instead, to protect fundamental rights, it is necessary to understand how in reacting to a conflict, we in fact speak rights today—Rechtsprechung—as a form of practice. The German Federal Constitutional Court’s decision in the conflict about female teachers wearing headscarves in German public ...


Chevron In The Circuit Courts: The Codebook Appendix, Kent Barnett, Christopher J. Walker Jan 2017

Chevron In The Circuit Courts: The Codebook Appendix, Kent Barnett, Christopher J. Walker

Michigan Law Review Online

For our empirical study on the use of Chevron deference in the federal courts of appeals, we utilized the following Codebook. This Codebook draws substantially from the codebook appended to William Eskridge and Lauren Baer’s pathbreaking study of administrative law’s deference doctrines at the Supreme Court. Our research assistants and we followed the instructions below when coding judicial decisions. To address questions as they arose and to ensure consistent coding, we maintained close contact with each other and our research assistants throughout the project and clarified the Codebook to address additional issues. Further details concerning our methodology (and ...


Unduly Burdening Women’S Health: How Lower Courts Are Undermining Whole Woman’S Health V. Hellerstedt, Litman M. Leah Jan 2017

Unduly Burdening Women’S Health: How Lower Courts Are Undermining Whole Woman’S Health V. Hellerstedt, Litman M. Leah

Michigan Law Review Online

At the end of the Supreme Court’s 2016 Term, the Court issued its decision in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt. One of the more closely watched cases of that Term, Hellerstedt asked whether the Supreme Court would adhere to its prior decision in Planned Parenthood v. Casey, which reaffirmed that women have a constitutionally protected right to decide to end a pregnancy.

The state of Texas had not formally requested that the Court revisit Casey or the earlier decision Casey had affirmed, Roe v. Wade, in Hellerstedt. But that was what Texas was, in effect, asking the Court ...


Judge Gorsuch And Johnson Resentencing (This Is Not A Joke), Leah M. Litman Jan 2017

Judge Gorsuch And Johnson Resentencing (This Is Not A Joke), Leah M. Litman

Michigan Law Review Online

Jan Crawford has reported that President Donald Trump is strongly considering appointing Judge Neil Gorsuch of the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit to the U.S. Supreme Court. I do not know Judge Gorsuch, but I do know his opinion in Prost v. Anderson, which is a rather wonky case on a somewhat technical area of federal habeas law. Prost provides an interesting insight into Judge Gorsuch’s jurisprudence. The case concerns an issue on which the courts of appeals disagree, so it provides a nice glimpse into how Judge Gorsuch might address matters that are ...


Reliability Of Expert Evidence In International Disputes, Matthew W. Swinehart Jan 2017

Reliability Of Expert Evidence In International Disputes, Matthew W. Swinehart

Michigan Journal of International Law

Part I of this article traces the historical trends in the use of expert evidence in international disputes, from the scattered reliance on experts in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries to the ubiquity of experts in modern disputes. With that perspective, Part II examines how decision makers have attempted to ensure reliability of the expert evidence that is flooding the evidentiary records of international disputes, while Part III outlines the many problems that still remain. Finally, Part IV proposes a non-exhaustive and nonbinding checklist of questions for analyzing the reliability of any type of expert evidence.


Proposing A One-Year Time Bar For 8 U.S.C. § 1226(C), Jenna Neumann Jan 2017

Proposing A One-Year Time Bar For 8 U.S.C. § 1226(C), Jenna Neumann

Michigan Law Review

Section 1226(c) of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act (IIRIRA) requires federal detention of certain deportable noncitizens when those noncitizens leave criminal custody. This section applies only to noncitizens with a criminal record (“criminal noncitizens”). Under section 1226(c), the Attorney General must detain for the entire course of his or her removal proceedings any noncitizen who has committed a qualifying offense “when the alien is released” from criminal custody. Courts construe this phrase in vastly different ways when determining whether a criminal noncitizen will be detained. The Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) and the Fourth Circuit ...


The Effect Of Legislation On Fourth Amendment Protection, Orin S. Kerr Jan 2017

The Effect Of Legislation On Fourth Amendment Protection, Orin S. Kerr

Michigan Law Review

When judges interpret the Fourth Amendment, and privacy legislation regulates the government’s conduct, should the legislation have an effect on the Fourth Amendment? Courts are split three ways. Some courts argue that legislation provides the informed judgment of a coequal branch that should influence the Fourth Amendment. Some courts contend that the presence of legislation should displace Fourth Amendment protection to prevent constitutional rules from interfering with the legislature’s handiwork. Finally, some courts treat legislation and the Fourth Amendment as independent and contend that the legislation should have no effect. This Article argues that courts should favor interpreting ...


The Fmla And Psychological Support: Courts Care About "Care" (And Employers Should, Too), Katherine Stallings Bailey Jan 2017

The Fmla And Psychological Support: Courts Care About "Care" (And Employers Should, Too), Katherine Stallings Bailey

Michigan Law Review

The Family and Medical Leave Act (“FMLA”) recognizes an employee’s right to take leave to care for a qualifying family member. In light of the Act’s remedial nature, the intended scope of the care provision is broad, but its definitional details are sparse. As a result of the attendant interpretive discretion afforded to courts, the Seventh Circuit announced its rejection of the requirement—first articulated by the Ninth Circuit—that care provided during travel be related to continuing medical treatment. A facial analysis of the resulting circuit split fails to appreciate the fundamental difference between the Seventh and ...


Federal Review Of State Criminal Convictions: A Structural Approach To Adequacy Doctrine, Eve Brensike Primus Jan 2017

Federal Review Of State Criminal Convictions: A Structural Approach To Adequacy Doctrine, Eve Brensike Primus

Michigan Law Review

Modern state postconviction review systems feature procedural labyrinths so complicated and confusing that indigent defendants have no realistic prospect of complying with the rules. When defendants predictably fail to navigate these mazes, state and federal courts deem their claims procedurally defaulted and refuse to consider those claims on their merits. As a result, systemic violations of criminal procedure rights—like the right to effective counsel—persist without judicial correction.

But the law contains a tool that, if properly adapted, could bring these systemic problems to the attention of federal courts: procedural adequacy. Procedural adequacy doctrine gives federal courts the power ...