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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 ...


Gerrymandering And The Constitutional Norm Against Government Partisanship, Michael S. Kang Dec 2017

Gerrymandering And The Constitutional Norm Against Government Partisanship, Michael S. Kang

Michigan Law Review

This Article challenges the basic premise in the law of gerrymandering that partisanship is a constitutional government purpose at all. The central problem, Justice Scalia once explained in Vieth v. Jubilerer, is that partisan gerrymandering becomes unconstitutional only when it “has gone too far,” giving rise to the intractable inquiry into “how much is too much.” But the premise that partisanship is an ordinary and lawful purpose, articulated confidently as settled law and widely understood as such, is largely wrong as constitutional doctrine. The Article surveys constitutional law to demonstrate the vitality of an important, if implicit norm against government ...


Educational Equality For Children With Disabilities: The 2016 Term Cases, Samuel R. Bagenstos Nov 2017

Educational Equality For Children With Disabilities: The 2016 Term Cases, Samuel R. Bagenstos

Book Chapters

One of the most longstanding debates in educational policy pits the goal of equality against the goal of adequacy: Should we aim to guarantee that all children receive an equal education? Or simply that they all receive an adequate education? The debate is vexing in part because there are many ways to specify “equality” and “adequacy.” Are we talking about equality of inputs (which inputs?), equality of opportunity (to achieve what?), or equality of results (which results?)? Douglas Rae and his colleagues famously argued that there are no fewer than 108 structurally distinct conceptions of equality. And how do we ...


How Elonis Failed To Clarify The Analysis Of "True Threats" In Social Media Cases And The Subsequent Need For Congressional Response, Jessica L. Opila Nov 2017

How Elonis Failed To Clarify The Analysis Of "True Threats" In Social Media Cases And The Subsequent Need For Congressional Response, Jessica L. Opila

Michigan Telecommunications & Technology Law Review

Social media and other internet communications have altered the way people communicate with one another, including the way people threaten one another. In 2015, the United States Supreme Court decided Elonis v. United States, which imposed a heightened mental state requirement for federal prosecutions of threats issued in interstate commerce. Although the statute, 18 U.S.C. § 875(c), has no mental state requirement, the Supreme Court held that, consistent with the principles of criminal law, only those with guilty minds should be convicted and thus some showing of subjective intent is required. The opinion did not name the requisite ...


Understanding Nautilus's Reasonable-Certainty Standard: Requirements For Linguistic And Physical Definiteness Of Patent Claims, Gary M. Fox Nov 2017

Understanding Nautilus's Reasonable-Certainty Standard: Requirements For Linguistic And Physical Definiteness Of Patent Claims, Gary M. Fox

Michigan Law Review

Patent applicants must satisfy a variety of requirements to obtain a patent from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). The definiteness requirement forces applicants to describe their inventions in unambiguous terms so that other inventors will understand the scope of granted patent rights. Although the statutory provision for the definiteness requirement has been stable for many years, the Supreme Court’s decision in Nautilus v. Biosig Instruments altered the doctrine. The Court abrogated the Federal Circuit’s insoluble-ambiguity standard and replaced it with a new reasonable-certainty standard. Various district courts have applied the new standard in different ways ...


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 ...


Child Welfare's Scarlet Letter: How A Prior Termination Of Parental Rights Can Permanently Brand A Parent As Unfit, Vivek S. Sankaran Oct 2017

Child Welfare's Scarlet Letter: How A Prior Termination Of Parental Rights Can Permanently Brand A Parent As Unfit, Vivek S. Sankaran

Articles

In many jurisdictions, once a parent has her rights terminated to one child, the State can use that decision to justify the termination of parental rights to another child. The State can do so regardless of whether the parent is fit to parent the second child. This article explores this practice, examines its origins, and discusses its constitutional inadequacies.


Confirmation Bias, Patrick Barry Aug 2017

Confirmation Bias, Patrick Barry

Articles

Supreme Court confirmation hearings are vapid. Supreme Court confirmation hearings are pointless. Supreme Court confirmation hearings are harmful to a citizenry already cynical about government. Sentiments like these have been around for decades and are bound to resurface each time a new nomination is made. This essay, however, takes a different view. It argues that Supreme Court confirmation hearings are a valuable form of cultural expression, one that provides a unique record of as the theater critic Martin Esslin might say, a nation thinking about itself in public.


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 ...


From Grace To Grids: Rethinking Due Process Protections For Parole., Kimberly A. Thomas, Paul D. Reingold May 2017

From Grace To Grids: Rethinking Due Process Protections For Parole., Kimberly A. Thomas, Paul D. Reingold

Articles

Current due process law gives little protection to prisoners at the point of parole, even though the parole decision, like sentencing, determines whether or not a person will serve more time or will go free. The doctrine regarding parole, which developed mostly in the late 1970s, was based on a judicial understanding of parole as an experimental, subjective, and largely standardless art—rooted in assessing the individual “character” of the potential parolee. In this Article we examine the foundations of the doctrine, and conclude that the due process inquiry at the point of parole should take into account the stark ...


The Miranda Case Fifty Years Later, Yale Kamisar May 2017

The Miranda Case Fifty Years Later, Yale Kamisar

Articles

A decade after the Supreme Court decided Miranda v. Arizona, Geoffrey Stone took a close look at the eleven decisions the Court had handed down “concerning the scope and application of Miranda.” As Stone observed, “[i]n ten of these cases, the Court interpreted Miranda so as not to exclude the challenged evidence.” In the eleventh case, the Court excluded the evidence on other grounds. Thus, Stone noted, ten years after the Court decided the case, “the Court ha[d] not held a single item of evidence inadmissible on the authority of Miranda.” Not a single item. To use baseball ...


Disentangling Miranda And Massiah: How To Revive The Sixth Amendment Right To Counsel As A Tool For Regulating Confession Law, Eve Brensike Primus May 2017

Disentangling Miranda And Massiah: How To Revive The Sixth Amendment Right To Counsel As A Tool For Regulating Confession Law, Eve Brensike Primus

Articles

Fifty years after Miranda v. Arizona, many have lamented the ways in which the Burger, Rehnquist, and Roberts Courts have cut back on Miranda's protections. One underappreciated a spect of Miranda's demise is the way it has affected the development of the pretrial Sixth Amendment right to counsel guaranteed by Massiah v. United States. Much of the case law diluting suspects' Fifth Amendment Miranda rights has bled over into the Sixth Amendment right to counsel cases without consideration of whether the animating purposes of the Massiah pretrial right to counsel would support such an importation. This development is ...


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 ...


Random If Not "Rare"? The Eighth Amendment Weaknesses Of Post-Miller Legislation, Kimberly Thomas Mar 2017

Random If Not "Rare"? The Eighth Amendment Weaknesses Of Post-Miller Legislation, Kimberly Thomas

Articles

First, this Article surveys the U.S. Supreme Court's decision to analogize life without parole for juveniles to the death penalty for adults, and discusses the Eighth Amendment law regarding the parameters around death penalty statutory schemes. Second, this Article examines the state legislative response to Miller, and scrutinizes it with the Court's Eighth Amendment death penalty law-and the states' responses to this case law-in mind. This Article highlights the failure of juvenile homicide sentencing provisions to: 1) narrow offenses that are eligible for life without parole sentences; 2) further limit, once a guilty finding is made, the ...


Precedent And Speech, Randy J. Kozel Feb 2017

Precedent And Speech, Randy J. Kozel

Michigan Law Review

The U.S. Supreme Court has shown a notable willingness to reconsider its First Amendment precedents. In recent years, the Court has departed from its prior statements regarding the constitutional value of false speech. It has revamped its process for identifying categorical exceptions to First Amendment protection. It has changed its positions on corporate electioneering and aggregate campaign contributions. In short, it has revised the ground rules of expressive freedom in ways large and small. The Court generally describes its past decisions as enjoying a presumption of validity through the doctrine of stare decisis. This Article contends that within the ...


The Fourth Amendment Categorical Imperative, Gray David Jan 2017

The Fourth Amendment Categorical Imperative, Gray David

Michigan Law Review Online

The vast majority of current Fourth Amendment doctrine is unfounded, incoherent, and dangerous. The culprit is the Supreme Court’s 1967 decision in Katz v. United States, which defines “search” as government conduct that violates subjectively manifested expectations of privacy “that society is prepared to recognize as ‘reasonable.’ ” This is pure applesauce. Nowhere will you find a standard dictionary that defines “search” in these terms. Neither will you hear a native speaker of the English language use “search” in this sense unless her mind has been polluted by a semester of studying criminal procedure. The Court created this definition of ...


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 ...


Labor And Employment Arbitration Today: Mid-Life Crisis Or New Golden Age?, Theodore J. St. Antonie Jan 2017

Labor And Employment Arbitration Today: Mid-Life Crisis Or New Golden Age?, Theodore J. St. Antonie

Articles

The major developments in employer-employee arbitration currently do not involve labor arbitration, that is, arbitration between employers and unions. The focus is on employment arbitration, arbitration between employers and individual employees. Beginning around 1980, nearly all the states judicially modified the standard American doctrine of employment-at-will whereby, absent a statutory or contractual prohibition, an employer could fire an employee "for good cause, for no cause, or even for cause morally wrong." Under the new regime, grounded in expansive contract and public policy theories, wrongfully discharged employees often reaped bonanzas in court suits, with California jury awards averaging around $425,000 ...