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Should Automakers Be Responsible For Accidents?, Kyle D. Logue May 2019

Should Automakers Be Responsible For Accidents?, Kyle D. Logue

Articles

Motor vehicles are among the most dangerous products sold anywhere. Automobiles pose a larger risk of accidental death than any other product, except perhaps opioids. Annual autocrash deaths in the United States have not been below 30,000 since the 1940s, reaching a recent peak of roughly 40,000 in 2016. And the social cost of auto crashes goes beyond deaths. Auto-accident victims who survive often incur extraordinary medical expenses. Those crash victims whose injuries render them unable to work experience lost income. Auto accidents also cause nontrivial amounts of property damage—mostly to the automobiles themselves, but also to ...


Treating Wrongs As Wrongs: An Expressive Argument For Tort Law, Scott Hershovitz Nov 2017

Treating Wrongs As Wrongs: An Expressive Argument For Tort Law, Scott Hershovitz

Articles

The idea that criminal punishment carries a message of condemnation is as commonplace as could be. Indeed, many think that condemnation is the mark of punishment, distinguishing it from other sorts of penalties or burdens. But for all that torts and crimes share in common, nearly no one thinks that tort has similar expressive aims. And that is unfortunate, as the truth is that tort is very much an expressive institution, with messages to send that are different, but no less important, than those conveyed by the criminal law. In this essay, I argue that tort liability expresses the judgment ...


In Praise Of (Some) Ex Post Regulation: A Response To Professor Galle, Kyle D. Logue Jan 2016

In Praise Of (Some) Ex Post Regulation: A Response To Professor Galle, Kyle D. Logue

Articles

According to modern law-and-economics (“L&E”) orthodoxy, the primary—maybe even the only—legitimate justification for government regulation is to correct a market failure. This conclusion is based on two key assumptions. First, when markets are functioning reasonably well, they are better at achieving efficiency than the government is. Second, most markets function reasonably well most of the time. Although there is probably evidence to support these assumptions (for example, the relative prosperity of market-based economies in comparison with the relative poverty of centrally planned economies), both assumptions are usually taken as articles of faith by mainstream L&E scholars ...


Encouraging Insurers To Regulate: The Role (If Any) For Tort Law, Kyle D. Logue Dec 2015

Encouraging Insurers To Regulate: The Role (If Any) For Tort Law, Kyle D. Logue

Articles

Insurance companies are financially responsible for a substantial portion of the losses associated with risky activities in the economy. The more insurers can lower the risks posed by their insureds, the more competitively they can price their policies, and the more customers they can attract. Thus, competition forces insurers to be private regulators of risk. To that end, insurers deploy a range of techniques to encourage their insureds to reduce the risks of their insured activities, from charging experience-rated premiums to discounting premium rates for insureds who make specific behavioral changes designed to reduce risk. Somewhat paradoxically, however, tort law ...


What Does Tort Law Do? What Can It Do?, Scott Hershovitz Jan 2012

What Does Tort Law Do? What Can It Do?, Scott Hershovitz

Articles

It’s not hard to describe what tort law does. As a first approximation, we might say that tort empowers those who suffer certain sorts of injuries or invasions to seek remedies from those who brought about those injuries or invasions. The challenge is to explain why tort does that, or to explain what tort is trying to do when it does that. After all, it is not obvious that we should have an institution specially concerned with the injuries and invasions that count as torts.


Is Tort Law A Form Of Institutionalized Revenge, Gabriel S. Mendlow Jan 2012

Is Tort Law A Form Of Institutionalized Revenge, Gabriel S. Mendlow

Articles

Viewed in a certain light, tort law serves primarily to give injury victims a means of imposing onerous burdens on their injurers. Through the remedy of injunction, tort law enables victims to restrict their injurers' freedom of action, and through the remedies of damages and restitution, tort law enables victims to deprive their injurers of money and other things of value. Moreover, tort law distinctively grants victims themselves the power to impose these burdens, rather than reserving prosecutorial discretion to the state. These features of tort law invite the charge that tort law is essentially a form of institutionalized revenge ...


Malpractice Suits And Physician Apologies In Cancer Care, Eugene Chung, Jill R. Horwitz, John A.E. Pottow, Reshma Jagsi Jan 2011

Malpractice Suits And Physician Apologies In Cancer Care, Eugene Chung, Jill R. Horwitz, John A.E. Pottow, Reshma Jagsi

Articles

Conside the following case: The patient is a 44-year-old woman who presents for radiation treatment of an isolated locoregional recurrence of breat cancer in her chest wall, 3 years after undergoing masectomy. At the time of diagnosis, she had T2N2M0 disease, with four of 15 lymph nodes involved with tumor. She received a masectomy with negative margins and appropriate chemotherapy, but none of her physicians talked to her about postmasectomy radiation therapy, which would clearly have been indicated to reduce her risk of locoregional failure and would have been expected to improve her likelihood of survival. She asks the radiation ...


Harry Potter And The Trouble With Tort Theory, Scott Hershovitz Jan 2011

Harry Potter And The Trouble With Tort Theory, Scott Hershovitz

Articles

Economists argue that tort law promotes an efficient allocation of resources to safety, while philosophers contend that it dispenses corrective justice. Despite the divide, the leading tort theories share something in common: they are grounded in an unduly narrow view of tort. Both economists and philosophers confuse the institution of tort law with the rules that are distinctive of it. They offer theories of tort's substantive rules, but for the most part ignore the procedures by which those rules are implemented. As a consequence, both miss and misconstrue much about tort law. The problem is particularly acute for economists ...


Corrective Justice For Civil Recourse Theorists, Scott Hershovitz Jan 2011

Corrective Justice For Civil Recourse Theorists, Scott Hershovitz

Articles

Though I think the civil recourse critique of the leading conceptions of corrective justice is in some respects misguided, I do not want to join up to the thrust and parry here. My aim in this Article is to show that there is a better conception of corrective justice than the ones that Goldberg and Zipursky target, that this conception of corrective justice is untouched by the civil recourse critique, and that civil recourse is best understood as a corrective justice account of tort. In other words, I aim to explain corrective justice for civil recourse theorists.


Coordinating Sanctions In Torts, Kyle D. Logue Jan 2010

Coordinating Sanctions In Torts, Kyle D. Logue

Articles

This Article begins with the standard Law and Economics account of tort law as a regulatory tool or system of deterrence, that is, as a means of giving regulated parties the optimal ex ante incentives to minimize the costs of accidents. Building on this fairly standard (albeit not universally accepted) picture of tort law, the Article asks the question how tort law should adjust, if at all, to coordinate with already existing non-tort systems of regulation. Thus, if a particular activity is already subject to extensive agency-based regulation (whether in the form of command-and-control requirements or in the form of ...


Of Coase, Calabresi, And Optimal Tax Liability, Kyle D. Logue, Joel Slemrod Jan 2010

Of Coase, Calabresi, And Optimal Tax Liability, Kyle D. Logue, Joel Slemrod

Articles

The Article proceeds as follows. Part II offers a primer on the Coase Theorem, beginning with the classic case of neighbor externalizing on neighbor (farmer and rancher), and it explains the basic invariance propositions. Part III shifts the focus to Coasean situations involving buyers and sellers in a market or contractual relationship, buyers and sellers whose market interactions cause harm to third parties. Using supply-and-demand diagrams, we illustrate (in a new way) some of the most basic findings of the economic analysis of law, including both the Coasean invariance and efficiency propositions and the Calabresian least-cost avoider idea. Also in ...


Two Masters, Carl E. Schneider Jan 2010

Two Masters, Carl E. Schneider

Articles

American government rests on the principle of distrust of government. Not only is power within the federal government checked and balanced. Power is divided between the federal government and the state governments. So what if a state law conflicts with a federal law? The Constitution says that the "Constitution, and the Laws of the United States ... shall be the supreme Law of the Land; ... any Thing in the ... Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding." Sometimes the conflict between federal and state law is obvious and the Supremacy Clause is easily applied. But sometimes ...


The Multiple Common Law Roots Of Charitable Immunity: An Essay In Honor Of Richard Epstein's Contributions To Tort Law, Jill R. Horwitz Jan 2010

The Multiple Common Law Roots Of Charitable Immunity: An Essay In Honor Of Richard Epstein's Contributions To Tort Law, Jill R. Horwitz

Articles

Professor Epstein has long promoted replacing tort-based malpractice law with a new regime based on contracts. In Mortal Peril, he grounded his normative arguments in favor of such a shift in the positive, doctrinal history of charitable immunity law. In this essay, in three parts, I critique Professor Epstein’s suggestion that a faulty set of interpretations in charitable immunity law led to our current reliance on tort for malpractice claims. First, I offer an alternative interpretation to Professor Epstein’s claim that one group of 19th and early 20th century cases demonstrates a misguided effort to protect donor wishes ...


Letting Good Deeds Go Unpunished: Volunteer Immunity Laws And Tort Deterrence, Jill R. Horwitz, Joseph Mead Jan 2009

Letting Good Deeds Go Unpunished: Volunteer Immunity Laws And Tort Deterrence, Jill R. Horwitz, Joseph Mead

Articles

Does tort law deter risky behavior in individuals? We explore this question by examining the relationship between tort immunity and volunteering. During the 1980s and 1990s, nearly every state provided some degree of volunteer immunity. Congress followed with the 1997 Volunteer Protection Act. This article analyzes these acts, identifying three motivations for them: the chilling effects of tort liability, limits on liability insurance, and moral concerns. Using data from the Independent Survey’s Giving and Volunteering surveys, we then identify a large and positive correlation between immunity and volunteering. We next consider the implications of the findings for tort theory ...


Operationalizing Deterrence Claims Management (In Hopsitals, A Large Retailer, And Jails And Prisons), Margo Schlanger Jan 2008

Operationalizing Deterrence Claims Management (In Hopsitals, A Large Retailer, And Jails And Prisons), Margo Schlanger

Articles

The theory that the prospect of liability for damages deters risky behavior has been developed in countless articles and books. The literature is far sparser, however, on how deterrence is operationalized. And prior work slights an equally important effect of damage actions, to incentivize claims management in addition to harm-reduction responses that are cost- rather than liabilityminimizing. This article works in the intersection of these two understudied areas, focusing on claims management steps taken by frequently sued organizations, and opening a window into the black box of deterrence to see how those steps may end up serving harm-reduction purposes as ...


Requiem For Section 1983, Paul D. Reingold Jan 2008

Requiem For Section 1983, Paul D. Reingold

Articles

Section 1983 no longer serves as a remedial statute for the people most in need of its protection. Those who have suffered a violation of their civil rights at the hands of state authorities, but who cannot afford a lawyer because they have only modest damages or seek only equitable remedies, are foreclosed from relief because lawyers shun their cases. Today civil rights plaintiffs are treated the same as ordinary tort plaintiffs by the private bar: without high damages, civil rights plaintiffs are denied access to the courts because no one will represent them. Congress understood that civil rights laws ...


Optimal Tax Compliance And Penalties When The Law Is Uncertain, Kyle D. Logue Jun 2007

Optimal Tax Compliance And Penalties When The Law Is Uncertain, Kyle D. Logue

Articles

This article examines the optimal level of tax compliance and the optimal penalty for noncompliance in circumstances in which the substance of the tax law is uncertain - that is, when the precise application of the Internal Revenue Code to a particular situation is not clear. In such situations, a number of interesting questions arise. This article will consider two of them. First, as a normative matter, how certain should taxpayers be before they rely on a particular interpretation of a substantively uncertain tax rule? If a particular position is not clearly prohibited but neither is it clearly allowed, what is ...


Private Liability For Reckless Consumer Lending, John A. E. Pottow Jan 2007

Private Liability For Reckless Consumer Lending, John A. E. Pottow

Articles

Congress recently enacted amendments to the Bankruptcy Code that possess the overarching theme of cracking down on debtors due to the increasing rate at which individuals have been filing for bankruptcy. Taking into account the correlation between the overall rise in consumer credit card debt and the rate of individual bankruptcy filings, the author nevertheless hypothesizes that not all credit card debt is troubling. Instead, the author proposes that the catalyst driving individual bankruptcy rates higher than ever is the level of "bad credit"-or credit extended to individuals even though there is a reasonable likelihood that the individual will ...


Hedonic Damages, Hedonic Adaptation, And Disability, Samuel R. Bagenstos, Margo Schlanger Jan 2007

Hedonic Damages, Hedonic Adaptation, And Disability, Samuel R. Bagenstos, Margo Schlanger

Articles

A number of states recognize hedonic damages as a separate category of recovery in tort and tort-like actions. Others consider lost enjoyment of life as an aspect of what are sometimes termed "disability" damages-damages for physical or mental impairment. Many other states permit juries to take account of lost enjoyment of life in setting compensation for pain and suffering or other forms of general damages. In all these jurisdictions, disability has loomed large. And the (explicit or implicit) view of disability is often one of tragic dependency and helplessness. As we show in Part I below, lawyers seeking hedonic damages ...


The (Legal) Pains Of Vioxx: Why Product Liability Can Make Products More Dangerous, Omri Ben-Shahar Jan 2006

The (Legal) Pains Of Vioxx: Why Product Liability Can Make Products More Dangerous, Omri Ben-Shahar

Articles

Comparing the experience of Vioxx and Celebrex leads Omri Ben-Shahar to think that stiff product liability has the perverse effect of inducing manufacturers of defective products to leave these products on the market, rather than withdraw them.


Civil Rights Injunctions Over Time: A Case Study Of Jail And Prison Court Orders, Margo Schlanger Jan 2006

Civil Rights Injunctions Over Time: A Case Study Of Jail And Prison Court Orders, Margo Schlanger

Articles

Lawyers obtained the first federal court orders governing prison and jail conditions in the 1960s. This and other types of civil rights injunctive practice flourished in the 1970s and early 1980s. But a conventional wisdom has developed that such institutional reform litigation peaked long ago and is now moribund. This Article's longitudinal account of jail and prison court-order litigation establishes that, to the contrary, correctional court-order litigation did not decline in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Rather, there was essential continuity from the early 1980s until1996, when enactment of the Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA) reduced both the ...


Second Best Damage Action Deterrence, Margo Schlanger Jan 2006

Second Best Damage Action Deterrence, Margo Schlanger

Articles

Potential defendants faced with the prospect of tort or tort-like damage actions can reduce their liability exposure in a number of ways. Prior scholarship has dwelled primarily on the possibility that they may respond to the threat of liability by augmenting the amount of care they take.1 Defendants (I limit myself to defendants for simplicity) will increase their expenditures on care, so the theory goes, when those expenditures yield sufficient liability-reducing dividends; more care decreases liability exposure by simultaneously making it less likely that the actors will be found to have behaved tortiously in the event of an accident ...


Reparations As Redistribution, Kyle D. Logue Jan 2004

Reparations As Redistribution, Kyle D. Logue

Articles

The most controversial, and most intriguing, remedy sought by proponents of slavery reparations involves massive redistribution of wealth from whites to blacks within the United States. This is not to say that reparations proponents have focused only on racial redistribution. Some have called for an official apology from the U.S. government. Others seek the creation of a foundation or institute, funded by U.S. tax dollars, to be devoted to furthering the interests of African Americans, including the funding of K- 12 educational programs for black children and the funding of general civil rights advocacy to counteract the lingering ...


Revisiting The Roles Of Legal Rules And Tax Rules In Income Redistribution: A Response To Kaplow & Shavell, Ronen Avraham, David Fortus, Kyle D. Logue Jan 2004

Revisiting The Roles Of Legal Rules And Tax Rules In Income Redistribution: A Response To Kaplow & Shavell, Ronen Avraham, David Fortus, Kyle D. Logue

Articles

The debate over whether legal rules should be used to redistribute resources in society or whether redistribution should be left exclusively to the tax-and-transfer system has long occupied philosophers, political theorists, economists, and legal academicians. For many years, the conventional wisdom on this question among legal scholars seemed to be that blanket generalizations were inappropriate. All systems of redistribution distort individuals' choices and entail administrative costs. Therefore, the argument went, a universal preference for using the tax-and-transfer system to redistribute is not justified. Rather, the choice among institutions to accomplish society's redistributive goals was considered to be "an empirical ...


Determinants Of Civil Rights Filings In Federal District Court By Jail And Prison Inmates, Anne Morrison Piehl, Margo Schlanger Jan 2004

Determinants Of Civil Rights Filings In Federal District Court By Jail And Prison Inmates, Anne Morrison Piehl, Margo Schlanger

Articles

This article uses panel data estimation techniques to examine the relation between the number of federal court civil filings by inmates and jail and state prison populations (and, hence, the relation between jail and prison inmate filing rates) both before and after the effective date, in 1996, of the Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA). The research issue matters for several reasons. First, the amount of litigation by inmates is a crucial component of the regulatory regime governing jails and prisons and thus what factors drive filings, and by how much, deserves close attention and assessment. In addition, the PLRA was ...


The Reliability Of The Administrative Office Of The U.S. Courts Database: An Initial Empirical Analysis, Theodore Eisenberg, Margo Schlanger Jan 2003

The Reliability Of The Administrative Office Of The U.S. Courts Database: An Initial Empirical Analysis, Theodore Eisenberg, Margo Schlanger

Articles

Researchers have long used federal court data assembled by the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts (AO) and the Federal Judicial Center (FJC). The data include information about every case filed in federal district court and every appeal filed in the twelve nonspecialized federal appellate courts. Much research using the AO data spans subject matter areas, and includes articles on appeals, caseloads and case-processing times, case outcomes, the relation between demographics and case outcomes, class actions, diversity jurisdiction, and litigation generally. Other research using the AO data covers particular subject matter areas, such as inmate cases, contract cases, corporate ...


A Taxing Settlement, Hanoch Dagan, James J. White Jan 2003

A Taxing Settlement, Hanoch Dagan, James J. White

Articles

The following essay is based on the talk "Government, Citizens, and Injurious Industries: A Case Study of the Tobacco Litigation," delivered by Hanoch Dagan last May to the Detroit Chapter of the International Association of Jewish Lawyers and Jurists, and on the article "Governments, Citizens, and Injurious Industries," by Dagan and James J. White, '62, which appeared in 75.2 New York University Law Review 254-428 (May 2000). The authors hold conflicting view on the underlying issue of this topic: tobacco company product liability. Professor Dagan holds the position that tobacco companies are liable for harm done by their products ...


The Genie And The Bottle: Collateral Sources Under The September 11th Victim Compensation Fund, Kenneth S. Abraham, Kyle D. Logue Jan 2003

The Genie And The Bottle: Collateral Sources Under The September 11th Victim Compensation Fund, Kenneth S. Abraham, Kyle D. Logue

Articles

The September 11th Victim Compensation Fund of 2001 (the Fund) was part of legislation enacted just eleven days after the terrorist attacks of September 11th in the wake of extraordinary national loss. It is possible, therefore, that the Fund will always be considered an urgent and unique response to the unprecedented events of September 11th. On that view, the character of the Fund will have little longterm policy significance. It is equally possible, however, that the enactment of the Fund will prove to be a seminal moment in the history of tort and compensation law. The Fund adopts a new ...


Legal Transitions, Rational Expectations, And Legal Progress, Kyle D. Logue Jan 2003

Legal Transitions, Rational Expectations, And Legal Progress, Kyle D. Logue

Articles

In the literature on legal transitions, the term "transition policy" is generally understood to mean a rule or norm that influences policymakers' decisions concerning the extent to which legal change should be accompanied by transition relief, whether in the form of grandfathering or phase-ins or direct compensation. Legal change within this literature is defined broadly, and somewhat counter-intuitively, to include any resolution of the uncertainty regarding what the law will be in the future or how the law will be applied to future circumstances. Thus, a legal change would obviously include an unexpected repeal of a tax provision, such as ...


Inmate Litigation, Margo Schlanger Jan 2003

Inmate Litigation, Margo Schlanger

Articles

In 1995, prison and jail inmates brought about 40,000 new lawsuits in federal court nearly a fifth of the federal civil docket. Court records evidence a success rate for inmate plaintiffs under fifteen percent. These statistics highlight two qualities long associated with the inmate docket: its volume and the low rate of plaintiffs' success. Then, in 1996, Congress enacted the Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA), which dramatically altered the litigation landscape, restricting inmates' access to federal court in a variety of ways. This Article examines inmate litigation before and after the PLRA. Looking first at the litigation process itself ...