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Full-Text Articles in Law

Discovery Cost Allocation, Due Process, And The Constitution's Role In Civil Litigation, Martin H. Redish Nov 2018

Discovery Cost Allocation, Due Process, And The Constitution's Role In Civil Litigation, Martin H. Redish

Vanderbilt Law Review

The issue of discovery cost allocation, long ignored by both courts and scholars, has become something of a cause celebre in the last few years. An article which I coauthored on the subject was part of that renewed interest.' In 2011, my former student, Colleen McNamara, and I wrote an article urging a dramatic change not only in the manner of how discovery costs are allocated, but an entirely new way of understanding the concept of discovery costs. 2 Since the original promulgation of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure in 1938, it has been universally assumed that discovery costs ...


Discovery Disclosure And Deterrence, Sergio J. Campos, Cheng Li Nov 2018

Discovery Disclosure And Deterrence, Sergio J. Campos, Cheng Li

Vanderbilt Law Review

Courts, practitioners, and scholars have recently expressed concern over the ex post costs of discovery in civil litigation. In this Article, we develop a game theoretic model of litigant behavior to study an overlooked phenomenon-the ex ante effects of discovery on a defendant's incentive to engage in unlawful conduct. We focus on motions to seal, which limit the disclosure of discovered information to the public, but permit disclosure to the court and parties. Specifically, we examine the effect different rules regarding such motions have in deterring defendants from engaging in unlawful behavior. We show that as a rule becomes ...


Discovery And The Social Benefits Of Private Litigation, Paul Stancil Nov 2018

Discovery And The Social Benefits Of Private Litigation, Paul Stancil

Vanderbilt Law Review

In the era just before the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure went into effect in 1938, federal civil litigation was a different animal.' Although Congress had created several private statutory causes of action before the 1930s,2 the federal civil docket prior to enactment of the Rules consisted primarily of diversity jurisdiction common law cases, labor injunctions and receiverships, and miscellaneous cases brought by the United States, including Prohibition-era "liquor cases" as well as internal revenue and food and drug enforcement. 3 Occasional exceptions notwithstanding, pre-New Deal federal courts hearing private claims functioned primarily as forums for the resolution of ...


Seeking Proportional Discovery: The Beginning Of The End Of Procedural Uniformity In Civil Rules, Linda S. Simard Nov 2018

Seeking Proportional Discovery: The Beginning Of The End Of Procedural Uniformity In Civil Rules, Linda S. Simard

Vanderbilt Law Review

After more than two decades of vigorous debate, the original Federal Rules of Civil Procedure became effective on September 16, 1938, and ushered in broad provisions for discovery. The need for discovery, however, was not a central theme of the debates that preceded the original codification. Rather, the proponents of the new rules asserted that the Conformity Act of 1872 created uncertainty regarding the procedure that would apply in federal court. This uncertainty caused unnecessary expense and delay, particularly for interstate corporations that felt compelled to retain specialized counsel in every state. Proponents asserted that adoption of trans-substantive rules of ...


Introduction: Reflections On The Future Of Discovery In Civil Cases, Paul W. Grimm Nov 2018

Introduction: Reflections On The Future Of Discovery In Civil Cases, Paul W. Grimm

Vanderbilt Law Review

First, we have a long way to go to educate judges about the benefit of active judicial management of the discovery process and the proportionality requirement. Second, just telling judges to "go forth and actively manage" without showing them concrete ways to do it in realistic case settings is not going to be effective. I am happy to report that thanks to the hard work of Judge Jeremy Fogel, director of the Federal Judicial Center, the educational programs for new and experienced judges alike now include special emphasis on management of the discovery process and the proportionality requirement. And the ...


How We Got Here: A Brief History Of Requester-Pays And Other Incentive Systems To Supplement Judicial Management Of Discovery, E. Donald Elliot Nov 2018

How We Got Here: A Brief History Of Requester-Pays And Other Incentive Systems To Supplement Judicial Management Of Discovery, E. Donald Elliot

Vanderbilt Law Review

Over the last two decades, a mature academic literature has developed about how we might use incentives as a complement to discretionary judicial decisions for controlling civil discovery. Professor Brian Fitzpatrick and the other organizers of the Vanderbilt Law Review "Future of Discovery" Symposium thought it would make sense to start this symposium by summarizing what has been written previously on the subject in the hope that the next time that the rules advisory committee tries again to solve the problem of properly managing discovery, it might benefit from some of this learning.


Opting Out Of Discovery, Jay Tidmarsh Nov 2018

Opting Out Of Discovery, Jay Tidmarsh

Vanderbilt Law Review

This Article proposes a system in which both parties are provided an opportunity to opt out of discovery. A party who opts out is immunized from dispositive motions, including a motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim or a motion for summary judgment. If neither party opts out of discovery, the parties waive jury-trial rights, thus giving judges the ability to use stronger case-management powers to focus the issues and narrow discovery. If one party opts out of discovery but an opponent does not, the cost of discovery shifts to the opponent. This Article justifies this proposal in ...


Bespoke Discovery, Jessica Erickson Nov 2018

Bespoke Discovery, Jessica Erickson

Vanderbilt Law Review

The U.S. legal system gives contracting parties significant freedom to customize the procedures that will govern their future disputes.' With forum selection clauses, parties can decide where they will litigate future disputes.2 With fee-shifting provisions, they can choose who will pay for these suits. 3 And with arbitration clauses, they can make upfront decisions to opt out of the traditional legal system altogether.4 Parties can also waive their right to appeal,5 their right to a jury trial,6 and their right to file a class action.7 Bespoke procedure, in other words, is commonplace in the ...


Application Of The New "Proportionality" Discovery Rule In Class Actions: Much Ado About Nothing, Robert H. Klonoff Nov 2018

Application Of The New "Proportionality" Discovery Rule In Class Actions: Much Ado About Nothing, Robert H. Klonoff

Vanderbilt Law Review

The "proportionality" amendment to the federal discovery rules, which went into effect on December 1, 2015, was greeted with panic by the plaintiffs' bar (and the academy) and euphoria by the defense bar. Both sides predicted that the impact would be profound and immediate. Some predicted that the impact would be especially great in class actions. To examine whether the predictions have been correct, I have reviewed every published judicial opinion (approximately 135) between December 1, 2015 and April 30, 2018 that applied the new proportionality rule in the class action context. The analysis is necessarily anecdotal rather than empirical ...


A Proposal To End Discovery Abuse, Alexandra D. Lahav Nov 2018

A Proposal To End Discovery Abuse, Alexandra D. Lahav

Vanderbilt Law Review

When commentators, lawyers, judges, politicians, business people-anyone really-are looking to heap abuse on part of the civil process, they complain about discovery. But in truth, civil discovery is treated cruelly and often misunderstood. This is the case for two reasons. First, we do not know much about what actually happens in civil discovery in different types of cases. As a result, people seem to fill in the gaps of knowledge with their priors, which are, in turn, dependent on a few examples that loom large in their imaginations. Whatever limited reliable evidence about discovery we do have-and it is indeed ...


Aligning Incentives And Cost Allocation In Discovery, Jonathan R. Nash, Joanna Shepherd Nov 2018

Aligning Incentives And Cost Allocation In Discovery, Jonathan R. Nash, Joanna Shepherd

Vanderbilt Law Review

In this Article, we explain that either a rule requiring both parties to share the costs of discovery ("cost-sharing rule") or a rule creating a risk for both parties that they will bear the entire costs of discovery ("cost-shifting rule") would minimize many of the negative incentives that exist under either a strict producer-pays or requester pays rule. Whereas the producer-pays rule creates incentives for excessive discovery because requesters can externalize the costs of requests and use discovery to impose costs on producing parties to force settlement, requesters under a cost-sharing or cost-shifting rule cannot externalize the costs of discovery ...


A Plan For Reforming Federal Pleading, Discovery, And Pretrial Merits Review, David Rosenberg, Anne Brown, Jaehyun Oh, Benjamin Taylor Nov 2018

A Plan For Reforming Federal Pleading, Discovery, And Pretrial Merits Review, David Rosenberg, Anne Brown, Jaehyun Oh, Benjamin Taylor

Vanderbilt Law Review

We propose a fundamental restructuring of the federal civil pretrial process to address its great expense and unreliability in resolving cases on their merits-problems largely attributable to discovery. The proposed reforms establish an affirmative-disclosure mandate that sharply reduces the role of discovery by transferring most of the parties' burden of fully revealing discoverable matter, favorable and unfavorable, to their pleadings. To effectuate the new function for pleadings, the reformed process replaces Rules 12(b)(6), (c), and (f) with pretrial merits review conducted exclusively pursuant to the procedures and standards for summary judgment under Rule 56. Responding parties will be ...


One-Way Fee Shifting After Summary Judgment, Cameron T. Norris Nov 2018

One-Way Fee Shifting After Summary Judgment, Cameron T. Norris

Vanderbilt Law Review

New, defendant-friendly amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure took effect in December 2015. Included in the amendments were several provisions designed to curb the cost of discovery. Although modest, the discovery-related provisions created more controversy than perhaps anything the rule makers have done in recent memory. Yet the new amendments were only part of what corporate defendants asked the rule makers to do. Left undone was a much more ambitious proposal: to outright flip who pays for discovery, from the party who produces the discovery to the party who requests it. To the surprise of many commentators, the ...


A Comparative Discussion Of Who Pays For Document Discovery In Australia, Canada, Guernsey (Channel Islands), And Singapore And Its Effect On Access To Justice, Gordon Mckee, Anne Glover, Francis Rouleau Nov 2018

A Comparative Discussion Of Who Pays For Document Discovery In Australia, Canada, Guernsey (Channel Islands), And Singapore And Its Effect On Access To Justice, Gordon Mckee, Anne Glover, Francis Rouleau

Vanderbilt Law Review

symposium organized by the Vanderbilt Law Review to discuss the future of discovery in the United States.' More specifically, the topic for discussion was an ongoing debate in the United States about proposals by the U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform and Lawyers for Civil Justice to adopt a "requestor-pays" discovery rule. In a requestor-pays system, each party pays for the discovery it seeks, which includes the costs of discovery belonging to the other parties to the litigation. It is based on the theory that a requestor-pays rule will encourage each party to manage its own discovery expenses and ...


Environmental Protection Requires More Than Social Resilience, Michael P. Vandenbergh Oct 2018

Environmental Protection Requires More Than Social Resilience, Michael P. Vandenbergh

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

Achieving the green economy requires taking into account divisive politics and distributive justice.


A Systematic Literature Review Of Individuals' Perspectives On Privacy And Genetic Information In The United States, Ellen W. Clayton, Colin M. Halverson, Nila A. Sathe, Bradley A. Malin Oct 2018

A Systematic Literature Review Of Individuals' Perspectives On Privacy And Genetic Information In The United States, Ellen W. Clayton, Colin M. Halverson, Nila A. Sathe, Bradley A. Malin

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

Concerns about genetic privacy affect individuals' willingness to accept genetic testing in clinical care and to participate in genomics research. To learn what is already known about these views, we conducted a systematic review, which ultimately analyzed 53 studies involving the perspectives of 47,974 participants on real or hypothetical privacy issues related to human genetic data. Bibliographic databases included MEDLINE, Web of Knowledge, and Sociological Abstracts. Three investigators independently screened studies against predetermined criteria and assessed risk of bias. The picture of genetic privacy that emerges from this systematic literature review is complex and riddled with gaps. When asked ...


Access To Justice, Rationality, And Personal Jurisdiction, Adam N. Steinman Oct 2018

Access To Justice, Rationality, And Personal Jurisdiction, Adam N. Steinman

Vanderbilt Law Review

After more than twenty years of silence, the Supreme Court has addressed personal jurisdiction six times over the last six Terms. This Article examines the Court's recent decisions in terms of their effect on access to justice and the enforcement of substantive law. The Court's new case law has unquestionably made it harder to establish general jurisdiction-that is, the kind of jurisdiction that requires no affiliation at all between the forum state and the litigation. Although this shift has been justifiably criticized, meaningful access and enforcement can be preserved through other aspects of the jurisdictional framework, namely (1 ...


Administrative Law's Political Dynamics, Kent Barnett, Christina L. Boyd, Christopher J. Walker Oct 2018

Administrative Law's Political Dynamics, Kent Barnett, Christina L. Boyd, Christopher J. Walker

Vanderbilt Law Review

Over thirty years ago, the Supreme Court in Chevron, U.S.A., Inc. v. Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc. commanded courts to uphold federal agency interpretations of ambiguous statutes as long as those interpretations are reasonable. This Chevron deference doctrine was based in part on the Court's desire to temper administrative law's political dynamics by vesting federal agencies, not courts, with primary authority to make policy judgments about ambiguous laws Congresscharged the agencies to administer. Despite this express objective, scholars such as Frank Cross, Emerson Tiller, and Cass Sunstein have empirically documented how politics influence circuit court review ...


The Jim Crow Jury, Thomas W. Frampton Oct 2018

The Jim Crow Jury, Thomas W. Frampton

Vanderbilt Law Review

Since the end of Reconstruction, the criminal jury box has both reflected and reproduced racial hierarchies in the United States. In the Plessy era, racial exclusion from juries was central to the reassertion of white supremacy. But it also generated pushback: a movement resisting "the Jim Crow jury" actively fought, both inside and outside the courtroom, efforts to deny black citizens equal representation on criminal juries. Recovering this forgotten history-a counterpart to the legal struggles against disenfranchisement and de jure segregationunderscores the centrality of the jury to politics and power in the post- Reconstruction era. It also helps explain Louisiana ...


Hindsight Bias In Antitrust Law, Christopher R. Leslie Oct 2018

Hindsight Bias In Antitrust Law, Christopher R. Leslie

Vanderbilt Law Review

The modern field of study into hindsight bias was launched by Baruch Fischhoff. Fischhoff provided his research subjects with a primer on the 1810s conflict between British forces and Nepalese Gurkhas near Northern India. He suggested four possible outcomes: British victory, Gurkha victory, a peace settlement, and a military stalemate with no peace settlement. The subjects were then divided into five groups. One group was given no information about the ultimate outcome of the conflict. Subjects in each of the remaining four groups were told that one of the four outcomes had, in fact, occurred. The subjects were then asked ...


The Trouble With Corporate Conscience, James D. Nelson Oct 2018

The Trouble With Corporate Conscience, James D. Nelson

Vanderbilt Law Review

Accomplished corporate law scholars claim that modern businesses need an infusion of morality. Disappointed by conventional regulatory responses to recurring corporate scandal, these scholars argue that corporate conscience provides a more fruitful path to systemic economic reform. In Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, which held that for-profit businesses can claim religious exemptions from general laws, the Supreme Court gave this notion of corporate conscience added momentum. Emboldened by the Court's embrace of business goals extending beyond shareholder profit, proponents of a moralized marketplace now celebrate corporate conscience as an idea whose time has come. This Essay criticizes the leading arguments ...


Trafficked In Texas: Combatting The Sex-Trafficking Epidemic Through Prostitution Law And Sentencing Reform In The Lone Star State, Madison T. Santana Oct 2018

Trafficked In Texas: Combatting The Sex-Trafficking Epidemic Through Prostitution Law And Sentencing Reform In The Lone Star State, Madison T. Santana

Vanderbilt Law Review

American law has historically treated prostitution as a victimless crime, a moral trespass between two consenting individuals, rather than a potential act of violence, a product of fraud or coercion. However, growing awareness of the international sex-trafficking epidemic has brought long-settled prostitution law once more under the critical eye of academics and lawmakers as a potential tool in curbing the stillgrowing demand for illicit commercial sex. Whether prostitution law reform may in fact be effective remains a matter of academic debate in the United States; however, such reform has gained substantial ground abroad, with compelling results. This Note argues for ...


Common Sense: Rethinking The New Common Rule's Week Protections For Human Subjects, Ashin Azim Oct 2018

Common Sense: Rethinking The New Common Rule's Week Protections For Human Subjects, Ashin Azim

Vanderbilt Law Review

Since 1991, the Federal Policy for the Protection of Human Subjects, known as the "Common Rule," has protected the identifiable private information of human subjects who participate in federally funded research initiatives. Although the research landscape has drastically changed since 1991, the Common Rule has remained mostly unchanged since its promulgation. In an effort to modernize the Common Rule, the Federal Policy for the Protection of Human Subjects Final Rule ("Final Rule') was published on January 19, 2017. The Final Rule, however, decreases human-subject protections by increasing access to identifiable data with limited administrative oversight. Accordingly, the Final Rule demands ...


Taking Antitrust Away From The Courts, Ganesh Sitaraman Sep 2018

Taking Antitrust Away From The Courts, Ganesh Sitaraman

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

A small number of firms hold significant market power in a wide variety of sectors of the economy, leading commentators across the political spectrum to call for a reinvigoration of antitrust enforcement. But the antitrust agencies have been surprisingly timid in response to this challenge, and when they have tried to assert themselves, they have often found that hostile courts block their ability to foster competitive markets. In other areas of law, Congress delegates power to agencies, agencies make regulations setting standards, and courts provide deferential review after the fact. Antitrust doesn’t work this way. Courts – made up of ...


Rethinking Conspiracy Jurisdiction In Light Of Stream Of Commerce And Effects-Based Jurisdictional Principles, Alex Carver May 2018

Rethinking Conspiracy Jurisdiction In Light Of Stream Of Commerce And Effects-Based Jurisdictional Principles, Alex Carver

Vanderbilt Law Review

For decades, some courts have been willing to exercise personal jurisdiction over nonresident defendants based solely on the forum contacts of their coconspirators. This practice, termed "conspiracy jurisdiction," has proven controversial among courts and commentators alike. On one hand, the actions of one member of a conspiracy are ordinarily attributable to other members of the conspiracy, and jurisdiction-conferring acts should arguably be no exception. On the other hand, attributing forum contacts from one actor to another based solely on their joint membership in a civil conspiracy seems to stretch due process protections to the breaking point. This Note provides new ...


Neuronal Testimonial: Brain-Computer Interfaces And The Law, Jessica L. Haushalter May 2018

Neuronal Testimonial: Brain-Computer Interfaces And The Law, Jessica L. Haushalter

Vanderbilt Law Review

Scientific researchers have developed a method of using brainscanning technology to determine if patients in a coma-like condition, known as a "vegetative state," are conscious despite their inability to communicate verbally or via motor actions. While in a brain scanner, patients "answer" yes-or-no questions by envisioning specific scenarios that activate different parts of the brain. A researcher interprets a brain scan image as a yes-or-no response based on which areas of the brain demonstrated activation. Exciting as this technology may be, there are difficulties in terms of the ability to use it within the legal system. This Note considers those ...


The Political Economy Of Corporate Exit, Susan S. Kuo, Benjamin Means May 2018

The Political Economy Of Corporate Exit, Susan S. Kuo, Benjamin Means

Vanderbilt Law Review

Critics contend that corporations subvert democracy by using their economic resources to lobby for corporate-friendly policies and to elect accommodating politicians.' Those who take a more sanguine view-notably, a majority of the Supreme Court-reject the claim that corporate dollars corrupt the political process. Yet, there is general agreement that corporate political activity includes financial contributions, lobbying efforts, participation in trade groups, and political advertising, all of which give corporations a "voice" in public decisionmaking.

This Essay contends that the accepted definition of corporate political activity is too narrow and overlooks the importance of "exit." When faced with objectionable laws or ...


Bankrupted Slaves, Rafael I. Pardo May 2018

Bankrupted Slaves, Rafael I. Pardo

Vanderbilt Law Review

Responsible societies reckon with the pernicious and ugly chapters in their histories. Wherever we look, there exist ever-present reminders of how we failed as a society in permitting the enslavement of millions of black men, women, and children during the first century of this nation's history. No corner of society remains unstained. As such, it is incumbent on institutions to confront their involvement in this horrific past to fully comprehend the kaleidoscopic nature of institutional complicity in legitimating and entrenching slavery. Only by doing so can we properly continue the march of progress, finding ways to improve society, not ...


Regulating Fintech, William Magnuson May 2018

Regulating Fintech, William Magnuson

Vanderbilt Law Review

The global financial crisis of 2008 ushered in the most sweeping reform of financial regulation in the United States since the New Deal. Alarmed by the systemic risk that financial institutions posed to the broader economy, as well as perceived abuses engendered by the "too big to fail" mindset among banking executives, legislators moved quickly to impose a slew of new requirements on the financial sector. These reforms, passed under the umbrella of the Dodd-Frank Act, drastically altered the regulatory landscape for financial institutions.' Wall Street firms found themselves subject to a bewildering array of new regulatory requirements, from restrictions ...


Plaintiff Cities, Sarah L. Swan May 2018

Plaintiff Cities, Sarah L. Swan

Vanderbilt Law Review

When cities are involved in litigation, it is most often as defendants. However, in the last few decades, cities have emerged as aggressive plaintiffs, bringing forward hundreds of mass-tort style claims. From suing gun manufacturers for the scourge of gun violence, to bringing actions against banks for the consequences of the subprime mortgage crisis, to initiating claims against pharmaceutical companies for opioid-related deaths and injuries, plaintiff cities are using litigation to pursue the perpetrators of the social harms that have devastated their constituents and their communities. Many courts and commentators have criticized these plaintiff city claims on numerous grounds. They ...