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University of Michigan Law School

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Full-Text Articles in Law

Thin And Thick Conceptions Of The Nineteenth Amendment Right To Vote And Congress's Power To Enforce It, Richard L. Hasen, Leah M. Litman Jul 2020

Thin And Thick Conceptions Of The Nineteenth Amendment Right To Vote And Congress's Power To Enforce It, Richard L. Hasen, Leah M. Litman

Articles

This Article, prepared for a Georgetown Law Journal symposium on the Nineteenth Amendment’s one-hundred-year anniversary, explores and defends a “thick” conception of the Nineteenth Amendment right to vote and Congress’s power to enforce it. A “thin” conception of the Nineteenth Amendment maintains that the Amendment merely prohibits states from enacting laws that prohibit women from voting once the state decides to hold an election. And a “thin” conception of Congress’s power to enforce the Nineteenth Amendment maintains that Congress may only supply remedies for official acts that violate the Amendment’s substantive guarantees. This Article argues the ...


May The State Punish What It May Not Prevent?, Gabriel S. Mendlow Jul 2020

May The State Punish What It May Not Prevent?, Gabriel S. Mendlow

Articles

In Why Is It Wrong To Punish Thought? I defended an overlooked principle of criminalization that I called the Enforceability Constraint. The Enforceability Constraint holds that the state may punish transgressions of a given type only if the state in principle may forcibly disrupt such transgressions on the ground that they are criminal wrongs. As I argued in the essay, the reason why the state is forbidden from punishing thought is that the state is forbidden from forcibly disrupting a person’s mental states on the ground that they are criminally wrongful (as opposed to, say, on the ground that ...


Fee-Shifting Statutes And Compensation For Risk, Maureen S. Carroll Jun 2020

Fee-Shifting Statutes And Compensation For Risk, Maureen S. Carroll

Articles

A law firm that enters into a contingency arrangement provides the client with more than just its attorneys' labor. It also provides a form of financing, because the firm will be paid (if at all) only after the litigation ends; and insurance, because if the litigation results in a low recovery (or no recovery at all), the firm will absorb the direct and indirect costs of the litigation. Courts and markets routinely pay for these types of risk-bearing services through a range of mechanisms, including state fee shifting statutes, contingent percentage fees, common-fund awards, alternative fee arrangements, and third-party litigation ...


Disaggregating Ineffective Assistance Of Counsel Doctrine: Four Forms Of Constitutional Ineffectiveness, Eve Brensike Primus Jun 2020

Disaggregating Ineffective Assistance Of Counsel Doctrine: Four Forms Of Constitutional Ineffectiveness, Eve Brensike Primus

Articles

For years, experts have blamed Strickland v. Washington’s lax standard for assessing trial attorney effectiveness for many of the criminal justice system’s problems. But the conventional understanding of Strickland as a problem for ineffectiveness claims gives the decision too much prominence because it treats Strickland as the test for all such claims. That is a mistake. Properly understood, the Supreme Court has recognized four different constitutional forms of trial attorney ineffectiveness, and Strickland’s two pronged test applies to only one of the four. If litigants and courts would notice this complexity and relegate Strickland to its proper ...


Disability And Reproductive Justice, Samuel Bagenstos Jun 2020

Disability And Reproductive Justice, Samuel Bagenstos

Articles

In the spring of 2019, disability and abortion rights collided at the Supreme Court in a case involving an Indiana ban on “disability-selective abortions.” In a lengthy concurrence in the denial of certiorari, Justice Thomas argued that the ban was constitutional because it “promote[s] a State’s compelling interest in preventing abortion from becoming a tool of modern-day eugenics.” Just a few months earlier, disability and reproductive rights issues had intersected in a very different way in the debate over the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court. Disability rights advocates drew attention to an opinion then-Judge Kavanaugh ...


Who Gets The Ventilator? Disability Discrimination In Covid-19 Medical-Rationing Protocols, Samuel Bagenstos May 2020

Who Gets The Ventilator? Disability Discrimination In Covid-19 Medical-Rationing Protocols, Samuel Bagenstos

Articles

The coronavirus pandemic has forced us to reckon with the possibility of having to ration life-saving medical treatments. In response, many health systems have employed protocols that explicitly de-prioritize people for these treatments based on pre-existing disabilities. This Essay argues that such protocols violate the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Rehabilitation Act, and the Affordable Care Act. Such explicit discrimination on its face violates these statutes. Nor can medical providers simply define disabled patients as being “unqualified” because of disabilities that do not affect the ability to ameliorate the condition for which treatment is sought. A proper interpretation of the ...


Importing Prescription Drugs From Canada — Legal And Practical Problems With The Trump Administration's Proposal, Rachel E. Sachs, Nicholas Bagley May 2020

Importing Prescription Drugs From Canada — Legal And Practical Problems With The Trump Administration's Proposal, Rachel E. Sachs, Nicholas Bagley

Articles

As Americans report ever-growing difficulty affording their prescription drugs, President Donald Trump has come under increasing pressure to act. To date, the Trump administration has attempted to advance a number of policy initiatives by means of executive action, but it has not yet adopted a program that would meaningfully assist patients. Most recently, the administration proposed a rule that, if finalized, would allow states to develop programs to import lower-priced prescription drugs from Canada, with the intent of reducing spending on drugs by U.S. patients and states and increasing access for patients.


Competition Wrongs, Nicolas Cornell May 2020

Competition Wrongs, Nicolas Cornell

Articles

In both philosophical and legal circles, it is typically assumed that wrongs depend upon having one’s rights violated. But within any market-based economy, market participants may be wronged by the conduct of other actors in the marketplace. Due to my illicit business tactics, you may lose profits, customers, employees, reputation, access to capital, or any number of other sources of value. This Article argues that such competition wrongs are an example of wrongs that arise without an underlying right, contrary to the typical philosophical and legal assumption. The Article thus draws upon various forms of business law to illustrate ...


Expungement Of Criminal Convictions: An Empirical Study, J.J. Prescott, Sonja B. Starr May 2020

Expungement Of Criminal Convictions: An Empirical Study, J.J. Prescott, Sonja B. Starr

Articles

Laws permitting the expungement of criminal convictions are a key component of modern criminal justice reform efforts and have been the subject of a recent upsurge in legislative activity. This debate has been almost entirely devoid of evidence about the laws’ effects, in part because the necessary data (such as sealed records themselves) have been unavailable. We were able to obtain access to de-identified data that overcome that problem, and we use it to carry out a comprehensive statewide study of expungement recipients and comparable nonrecipients in Michigan. We offer three key sets of empirical findings. First, among those legally ...


Understanding Violent-Crime Recidivism, J.J. Prescott, Benjamin Pyle, Sonja B. Starr May 2020

Understanding Violent-Crime Recidivism, J.J. Prescott, Benjamin Pyle, Sonja B. Starr

Articles

People convicted of violent crimes constitute a majority of the imprisoned population but are generally ignored by existing policies aimed at reducing mass incarceration. Serious efforts to shrink the large footprint of the prison system will need to recognize this fact. This point is especially pressing at the time of this writing, as states and the federal system consider large-scale prison releases motivated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Those convicted of violent crimes constitute a large majority of older prisoners, who are extremely vulnerable to the spread of the virus behind bars. Excluding them from protective measures will deeply undermine those ...


Disability Rights And The Discourse Of Justice., Samuel Bagenstos Apr 2020

Disability Rights And The Discourse Of Justice., Samuel Bagenstos

Articles

Although the ADA has changed the built architecture of America and dramatically increased the visibility of disabled people, it has not meaningfully increased disability employment rates. And the statute continues to provoke a backlash. Disability rights advocates and sympathizers offer two principal stories to explain this state of affairs. One, the “lost-bipartisanship” story, asserts that disability rights were once an enterprise broadly endorsed across the political spectrum but that they have fallen prey to the massive rise in partisan polarization in the United States. The other, the “legal-change-outpacing-social- change” story, asserts that the ADA was essentially adopted too soon—that ...


Rethinking Foster Care: Why Our Current Approach To Child Welfare Has Failed, Vivek Sankaran, Christopher Church Apr 2020

Rethinking Foster Care: Why Our Current Approach To Child Welfare Has Failed, Vivek Sankaran, Christopher Church

Articles

Over the past decade, the child welfare system has expanded, with vast public and private resources being spent on the system. Despite this investment, there is scant evidence suggesting a meaningful return on investment. This Article argues that without a change in the values held by the system, increased funding will not address the public health problems of child abuse and neglect.


Does Capital Bear The U.S. Corporate Tax After All? New Evidence From Corporate Tax Returns, Edward Fox Mar 2020

Does Capital Bear The U.S. Corporate Tax After All? New Evidence From Corporate Tax Returns, Edward Fox

Articles

This article uses U.S. corporate tax return data to assess how government revenue would have changed if, over the period 1957–2013, corporations had been subject to a hypothetical corporate cash flow tax—that is, a tax allowing for the immediate deduction of investments in long-lived assets like equipment and structures—rather than the corporate tax regime actually in effect. Holding taxpayer behavior fixed, the data indicate actual corporate tax revenue over the most recent period (1995–2013) differed little from that under the hypothetical cash flow tax. This result has three important implications. First, capital owners appear to ...


The Cost Of Novelty, Will Nicholson Price Ii Mar 2020

The Cost Of Novelty, Will Nicholson Price Ii

Articles

Patent law tries to spur the development of new and better innova­tive technology. But it focuses much more on “new” than “better”—and it turns out that “new” carries real social costs. I argue that patent law promotes innovation that diverges from existing technology, either a little (what I call “differentiating innovation”) or a lot (“exploring innova­tion”), at the expense of innovation that tells us more about existing technology (“deepening innovation”). Patent law’s focus on newness is unsurprising, and fits within a well-told narrative of innovative diversity accompanied by market selection of the best technologies. Unfortunately, innovative ...


Using Transactional Practice Competitions To Introduce Students To Key Deal-Making Skills, Ted Becker, Eric Zacks Feb 2020

Using Transactional Practice Competitions To Introduce Students To Key Deal-Making Skills, Ted Becker, Eric Zacks

Articles

Law school moot court competitions are everywhere. That is a bit of an exaggeration, to be sure, but not by much. At last count, students with an interest in litigation had more than 60 interschool appellate advocacy competitions to choose from, ranging in topics from admiralty to space law to veterans law. Toss in trial advocacy competitions, and the number of opportunities to hone litigation skills increases significantly. And seemingly every law school has its own intraschool litigation competitions, ranging from part of a 1L legal writing program to school-wide appellate advocacy competitions whose final rounds attract prominent judges or ...


Designing And Enforcing Preliminary Agreements, Albert H. Choi, George Triantis Feb 2020

Designing And Enforcing Preliminary Agreements, Albert H. Choi, George Triantis

Articles

Preliminary agreements—variously labeled as memoranda of understanding, letters of intent, term sheets, commitment letters, or agreements in principle—are common in complex business transactions. They document an incomplete set of terms that the parties have agreed upon, while anticipating further negotiation of the remaining provisions. They often create legal obligations, particularly a duty to negotiate in good faith. This duty has been the subject of a substantial number of judicial opinions over the past few decades and yet continues to be regarded as a confusing and unpredictable issue in contract law. Legal scholarship is hamstrung in its analysis of ...


Is Obamacare Really Unconstitutional?, Nicholas Bagley Jan 2020

Is Obamacare Really Unconstitutional?, Nicholas Bagley

Articles

On December 18, 2019, just 3 days after the close of open enrollment on the exchanges and on the same day the House of Representatives impeached President Donald Trump, a conservative appeals court handed the President a major victory in his crusade against the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Over a stern dissent, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit declared that the law’s individual mandate is unconstitutional and that the entire rest of the law might therefore be invalid.


Golden Parachutes And The Limits Of Shareholder Value, Albert H. Choi, Andrew C.W. Lund, Robert Schonlau Jan 2020

Golden Parachutes And The Limits Of Shareholder Value, Albert H. Choi, Andrew C.W. Lund, Robert Schonlau

Articles

With the passage of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act in 2010, Congress attempted to constrain change-in-control payments (also known as “golden parachutes”) by giving shareholders the right to approve or disapprove such payments on an advisory basis. This Essay is the first to empirically examine the experience with the Say-on-Golden-Parachute (“SOGP”) vote. We find that unlike shareholder votes on proposed mergers, there is a significant amount of variation with respect to votes on golden parachutes. Notwithstanding the variation, however, the SOGP voting regime is likely ineffective in controlling golden parachute (“GP”) compensation. First, proxy advisors seem ...


Are Litigation Outcome Disparities Inevitable? Courts, Technology, And The Future Of Impartiality., Avital Mentovich, J.J. Prescott, Orna Rabinovich-Einy Jan 2020

Are Litigation Outcome Disparities Inevitable? Courts, Technology, And The Future Of Impartiality., Avital Mentovich, J.J. Prescott, Orna Rabinovich-Einy

Articles

This article explores the ability of technology—specifically, online judicial procedures—to eliminate systematic group-level litigation outcome disparities (i.e., disparities correlated with the visible identity markers of litigants). Our judicial system has long operated under the assumption that it can only be “impartial enough.” After all, judges, like all human beings, harbor implicit biases that are often sizable, unconscious, and triggered automatically, and research indicates that strategies to curb implicit biases in human decision making may be ineffective, especially in the face of the resource and caseload constraints of modern-day adjudication. The recent emergence of online court proceedings, however ...


Civil Procedure And Economic Inequality, Maureen Carroll Jan 2020

Civil Procedure And Economic Inequality, Maureen Carroll

Articles

How well do procedural doctrines attend to present-day economic inequality? This Essay examines that question through the lens of three doctrinal areas: the “irreparable harm” prong of the preliminary injunction standard, the requirement that discovery must be proportional to the needs of the case, and the due process rights of class members in actions for injunctive relief. It concludes that in each of those areas, courts and commentators could do more to take economic inequality into account.


Muted Justice, Leah Litman Jan 2020

Muted Justice, Leah Litman

Articles

The Chief Justice of the United States possesses significant power. His position as the senior most Justice on the U.S. Supreme Court allows him to assign opinions to other Justices and to coordinate scheduling the Court’s cases for argument. And after Justice Kennedy retired in June 2018, Chief Justice Roberts was the median Justice on the Court, whose vote often determined the outcome in a case. Even after Justice Barrett’s confirmation changed that state of affairs, the Chief remains an important Justice to watch.


The Personal Responsibility Pandemic: Centering Solidarity In Public Health And Employment Law, Lindsay F. Wiley, Samuel R. Bagenstos Jan 2020

The Personal Responsibility Pandemic: Centering Solidarity In Public Health And Employment Law, Lindsay F. Wiley, Samuel R. Bagenstos

Articles

Our nation’s response to the coronavirus pandemic has revealed fundamental flaws in our legal regimes governing both public health and employment. Public health orders have called on individuals to make sacrifices to protect society as a whole. Simple fairness dictates that the burdens should be shared as widely as the benefits. And the case for burden-sharing does not rest on fairness alone. Public health measures are more likely to succeed when those who are subject to them understand them as fair1 and when their cooperation is supported. 2 Predictably, our pandemic response has placed disproportionate burdens on those who ...


Prenatal Drug Exposure As Aggravated Circumstances, Frank E. Vandervort Nov 2019

Prenatal Drug Exposure As Aggravated Circumstances, Frank E. Vandervort

Articles

In Michigan, "a child has a legal right to begin life with sound mind and body." Yet the family court may not assert Juvenile Code jurisdiction until after birth. In re Baby X addressed the question of whether a parent's prenatal conduct may form the basis for jurisdiction upon birth. It held that a mother's drug use during pregnancy is neglect, allowing the court to assert jurisdiction immediately upon the child's birth. In deciding Baby X, the Court specifically reserved the question of whether parental drug use during pregnancy might be sufficient to permanently deprive a parent ...


Ecosystem Competition And The Antitrust Laws, Daniel A. Crane Oct 2019

Ecosystem Competition And The Antitrust Laws, Daniel A. Crane

Articles

Conventional antitrust norms analyze market power—as a stepping stone to anticompetitive effects and, hence, prohibited conduct—from the perspective of product substitutability. Two goods or services are said to compete with one another when they are reasonably interchangeable from the perspective of consumers, or to put it in more formal economic terms, when there is cross-elasticity of demand between them. Conversely, when two goods or services are not reasonably interchangeable, they are not horizontally related and are said not to compete with one another. Since a concern over horizontal agreements and horizontal effects dominate antitrust—courts even analyze vertical ...


Spoiler Alert: When The Supreme Court Ruins Your Brief Problem Mid-Semester, Margaret Hannon Sep 2019

Spoiler Alert: When The Supreme Court Ruins Your Brief Problem Mid-Semester, Margaret Hannon

Articles

Partway through the winter 2019 semester,1 the Supreme Court ruined my favorite summary judgment brief problem while my students were working on it. I had decided to use the problem despite the Court granting cert and knowing it was just a matter of time before the Court issued its decision. In this Article, I share some of the lessons that I learned about the risks involved in using a brief problem based on a pending Supreme Court case. I conclude that, while I have not typically set out to base a problem on a pending Supreme Court case, doing ...


Advocating For Children With Disabilities In Child Protection Cases, Joshua B. Kay Aug 2019

Advocating For Children With Disabilities In Child Protection Cases, Joshua B. Kay

Articles

Children with disabilities are maltreated at a higher rate than other children and overrepresented in child protection matters, yet most social service caseworkers, judges, child advocates, and other professionals involved in these cases receive little to no training about evaluating and addressing their needs. Child protection case outcomes for children with disabilities tend to differ from those of nondisabled children, with more disabled children experiencing a termination of their parents' rights and fewer being reunified with their parents or placed with kin. They also tend to experience longer waits for adoption. Furthermore, the poor outcomes that plague youth who age ...


Imaginary Bottles, Jessica Litman Aug 2019

Imaginary Bottles, Jessica Litman

Articles

This essay, written for a symposium commemorating John Perry Barlow, who died on February 7, 2018, revisits Barlow's 1994 essay for WIRED magazine, "The Economy of Ideas: A Framework for patents and copyrights in the Digital Age (everything you know about intellectual property is wrong)." Barlow observed that networked digital technology posed massive and fundamental challenges for the markets for what Barlow termed “the work we do with our minds” and for the intellectual property laws designed to shape those markets. He predicted that those challenges would melt extant intellectual property systems into a smoking heap within a decade ...


Corresponding Ideas In Corresponding Forms, Patrick Barry Aug 2019

Corresponding Ideas In Corresponding Forms, Patrick Barry

Articles

Don’t make the mistake of thinking that content always comes before structure. You don’t need to figure out all your ideas before you decide how to organize them. Much value can come from going in the opposite direction: first figure out how you are going to organize your ideas—their appropriate structure—and then determine the appropriate content. I often offer law students the following suggestion: “Once you find the right structure, perhaps it will be easier to find the right content.”


A Functional Approach To Judicial Review Of Ptab Rulings On Mixed Questions Of Law And Fact, Rebecca S. Eisenberg Jul 2019

A Functional Approach To Judicial Review Of Ptab Rulings On Mixed Questions Of Law And Fact, Rebecca S. Eisenberg

Articles

The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (“Federal Circuit”) has long relied on active appellate review to bring uniformity and clarity to patent law. It initially treated the PTO the same as the federal district courts, reviewing its factual findings for clear error and its legal conclusions de novo. Following reversal by the Supreme Court in Dickinson v. Zurko, the Federal Circuit began giving greater deference to PTO factual findings. But it continued to review the PTO’s legal conclusions de novo, while coding an expansive list of disputed issues in patent cases as legal conclusions, even when they ...


A Cure Worse Than The Disease? The Impact Of Removal On Children And Their Families, Vivek Sankaran, Christopher Church, Monique Mitchell Jul 2019

A Cure Worse Than The Disease? The Impact Of Removal On Children And Their Families, Vivek Sankaran, Christopher Church, Monique Mitchell

Articles

Removing children from their parents is child welfare's most drastic intervention. Research clearly establishes the profound and irreparable damage family separation can inflict on children and their parents. To ensure that this intervention is only used when necessary, a complex web of state and federal constitutional principles, statutes, administrative regulations, judicial decisions, and agency policies govern the removal decision. Central to these authorities is the presumption that a healthy and robust child welfare system keeps families together, protects children from harm, and centers on the needs of children and their parents. Yet, research and practice-supported by administrative data-paint a ...