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Lawyer As Soothsayer: Exploring The Important Role Of Outcome Prediction In The Practice Of Law, Mark K. Osbeck Dec 2018

Lawyer As Soothsayer: Exploring The Important Role Of Outcome Prediction In The Practice Of Law, Mark K. Osbeck

Articles

Outcome prediction has always been an important part of practicing law. Clients rely heavily on their attorneys to provide accurate assessments of the potential legal consequences they face when making important decisions (such as whether to accept a plea bargain, or risk a conviction on a much more serious offense at trial). And yet, notwithstanding its enormous importance to the practice of law (and notwithstanding the handsome legal fees it commands), outcome prediction in the law remains a very imprecise endeavor. The reason for this inaccuracy is that the three principal tools lawyers have traditionally relied on to facilitate outcome ...


Comment On 'Judicial Compensation And Performance', J.J. Prescott Dec 2018

Comment On 'Judicial Compensation And Performance', J.J. Prescott

Articles

The most significant challenges to better understanding judicial behavior are lack of data and the absence of plausible exogenous variation in judicial environments. The random assignment of judges to cases has admittedly been helpful in gaining traction on the effects of judicial decisions (e.g., Dobbie, Goldin, and Yang 2018). Yet developing a full empirical account of “what judges maximize” (Posner 1993) would require a setting in which judges are randomly subjected to a wide variety of (real-world) environments with different costs, constraints, and rewards. This prospect remains pie in the sky, but that does not mean that we have ...


The Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse: Origins And Goals, Margo Schlanger Nov 2018

The Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse: Origins And Goals, Margo Schlanger

Articles

The Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse (http://clearinghouse.net) solves a significant information deficit related to civil rights litigation by posting information about thousands of ongoing and closed large-scale civil rights cases. Documents are OCR’d and searchable; cases are searchable by metadata tags as well as full-text searching. Each case has a litigation summary by a law student. We live in a civil rights era—a time when people are using the courts, among other strategies, to fight for civil rights. The Clearinghouse posts the records of those fights, the stories of civil rights cases—across topics, across regions, across ...


Securities Law In The Sixties: The Supreme Court, The Second Circuit, And The Triumph Of Purpose Over Text, Adam C. Pritchard, Robert B. Thompson Nov 2018

Securities Law In The Sixties: The Supreme Court, The Second Circuit, And The Triumph Of Purpose Over Text, Adam C. Pritchard, Robert B. Thompson

Articles

This Article analyzes the Supreme Court’s leading securities cases from 1962 to 1972—SEC v. Capital Gains Research Bureau, Inc.; J.I. Case Co. v. Borak; Mills v. Electric Auto-Lite Co.; Superintendent of Insurance v. Bankers Life & Casualty Co.; and Affiliated Ute of Utah v. United States—relying not just on the published opinions, but also the Justices’ internal letters, memos, and conference notes. The Sixties Court did not simply apply the text as enacted by Congress, but instead invoked the securities laws’ purposes as a guide to interpretation. The Court became a partner of Congress in shaping the securities laws ...


What We Don't See When We See Copyright As Property, Jessica Litman Nov 2018

What We Don't See When We See Copyright As Property, Jessica Litman

Articles

For all of the rhetoric about the central place of authors in the copyright scheme, our copyright laws in fact give them little power and less money. Intermediaries own the copyrights, and are able to structure licenses so as to maximise their own revenue while shrinking their pay-outs to authors. Copyright scholars have tended to treat this point superficially, because – as lawyers – we take for granted that copyrights are property; property rights are freely alienable; and the grantee of a property right stands in the shoes of the original holder. I compare the 1710 Statute of Anne, which created statutory ...


Texas Gulf Sulphur And The Genesis Of Corporate Liability Under Rule 10b-5, Adam C. Pritchard, Robert B. Thompson Oct 2018

Texas Gulf Sulphur And The Genesis Of Corporate Liability Under Rule 10b-5, Adam C. Pritchard, Robert B. Thompson

Articles

This Essay explores the seminal role played by SEC v. Texas Gulf Sulphur Co. in establishing Rule 10b-5’s use to create a remedy against corporations for misstatements made by their officers. The question of the corporation’s liability for private damages loomed large for the Second Circuit judges in Texas Gulf Sulphur, even though that question was not directly at issue in an SEC action for injunctive relief. The judges considered both, construing narrowly “in connection with the purchase or sale of any security,” and the requisite state of mind required for violating Rule 10b-5. We explore the choices ...


Universities: The Fallen Angels Of Bayh-Dole?, Rebecca S. Eisenberg, Robert Cook-Deegan Oct 2018

Universities: The Fallen Angels Of Bayh-Dole?, Rebecca S. Eisenberg, Robert Cook-Deegan

Articles

The Bayh-Dole Act of 1980 established a new default rule that allowed nonprofit organizations and small businesses to own, as a routine matter, patents on inventions resulting from research sponsored by the federal government. Although universities helped get the Bayh-Dole Act through Congress, the primary goal, as reflected in the recitals at the beginning of the new statute, was not to benefit universities but to promote the commercial development and utilization of federally funded inventions. In the years since the passage of the Bayh-Dole Act, universities seem to have lost sight of this distinction. Their behavior as patent seekers, patent ...


Collaboration With Doctrinal Faculty To Introduce Creac, Beth Hirschfelder Wilensky Oct 2018

Collaboration With Doctrinal Faculty To Introduce Creac, Beth Hirschfelder Wilensky

Articles

When legal writing professors introduce CREAC (or IRAC, TREAT, etc.), our examples necessarily use some area of substantive law to demonstrate how the pieces of legal analysis fit together. And when we ask students to try drafting a CREAC analysis, they also have to learn the relevant substantive law first. Students might be asked to analyze whether a worker is an employee or independent contractor or whether the elements of a tort claim are satisfied. But that means that students need to learn the relevant substantive doctrine while they are also grappling with the basics of CREAC. In the language ...


Cardozo On The Supreme Court: Meeting High Expectations, Richard D. Friedman Oct 2018

Cardozo On The Supreme Court: Meeting High Expectations, Richard D. Friedman

Articles

President Trump announced his nomination of Neil Gorsuch — the sixth most senior judge on a federal appellate court in the hinterland—for a seat on the Supreme Court in a formal, nationally televised ceremony. Judge Gorsuch squeezed the shoulder of his wife, a gesture that signaled not only his thrill at the nomination but his joy at being able to share it with her. There followed a bitterly partisan process, featuring hearings at which the nominee testified and deflected questions about his substantive views. A change in the Senate rules, ending the possibility of a filibuster, was necessary to bring ...


Bankruptcy Fiduciary Duties In The World Of Claims Trading, John A.E. Pottow Oct 2018

Bankruptcy Fiduciary Duties In The World Of Claims Trading, John A.E. Pottow

Articles

In earlier work, I explored the role of fiduciary duties in the bankruptcy trustee's administration of a debtor's estate, noting the absence of any explicit demarcation of those duties in the Bankruptcy Code. In this piece, I report the highlights of that analysis and see to what extent (if any) fiduciary duties can inform policy prescriptions for the issue of bankruptcy claims trading, colorfully referred to by some as the world of "bankruptcy M&A." My initial take is pessimistic. Fiduciary duties, at least as traditionally conceived in bankruptcy, are unlikely to provide much help. But there is ...


Divine Justice And The Library Of Babel: Or, Was Al Capone Really Punished For Tax Evasion?, Gabriel Mendlow Oct 2018

Divine Justice And The Library Of Babel: Or, Was Al Capone Really Punished For Tax Evasion?, Gabriel Mendlow

Articles

A criminal defendant enjoys an array of legal rights. These include the right not to be punished for an offense unless charged, tried, and proved guilty beyond a reasonable doubt; the right not to be punished disproportionately; and the right not to be punished for the same offense more than once. I contend that the design of our criminal legal system imperils these rights in ways few observers appreciate. Because criminal codes describe misconduct imprecisely and prohibit more misconduct than any legislature actually aspires to punish, prosecutors decide which violations of the code merit punishment, and judges decide how much ...


When Law Calls, Does Science Answer? A Survey Of Distinguished Scientists & Engineers, Shari Seidman Diamond, Richard O. Lempert Oct 2018

When Law Calls, Does Science Answer? A Survey Of Distinguished Scientists & Engineers, Shari Seidman Diamond, Richard O. Lempert

Articles

Sound legal decision-making frequently requires the assistance of scientists and engineers. The survey we conducted with the cooperation of the American Academy examines the views of the legal system held by some of the nation’s most distinguished scientists and engineers, what motivates them to participate or to refuse to assist in lawsuits when asked, and their assessment of their experiences when they do participate. The survey reveals that a majority of the responding scientists and engineers will agree to participate when asked, and when they turn down requests, the most common reasons are lack of time and absence of ...


Introduction, Shari S. Diamond, Richard O. Lempert Oct 2018

Introduction, Shari S. Diamond, Richard O. Lempert

Articles

Experts bedeviled the legal system long before seventeenth-century Salem, when the town's good citizens relied on youthful accusers and witchcraft experts to identify the devil's servants in their midst. As in Salem, claims of expertise have often been questioned and objections raised about the bases of expert knowledge. Expertise, then and now, did not have to be based on science; but the importance of science and the testimony of scientific experts has since medieval times been woven into the fabric of the English jurisprudence that Americans inherited. In cases as long ago as 1299 we find examples of ...


Antitrust's Unconventional Politics, Daniel A. Crane Sep 2018

Antitrust's Unconventional Politics, Daniel A. Crane

Articles

Antitrust law stands at its most fluid and negotiable moment in a generation. The bipartisan consensus that antitrust should solely focus on economic efficiency and consumer welfare has quite suddenly come under attack from prominent voices calling for a dramatically enhanced role for antitrust law in mediating a variety of social, economic, and political friction points, including employment, wealth inequality, data privacy and security, and democratic values. To the bewilderment of many observers, the ascendant pressures for antitrust reforms are flowing from both wings of the political spectrum, throwing into confusion a conventional understanding that pro-antitrust sentiment tacked left and ...


Limiting State Flexibility In Drug Pricing, Nicholas Bagley, Rachel E. Sachs Sep 2018

Limiting State Flexibility In Drug Pricing, Nicholas Bagley, Rachel E. Sachs

Articles

Throughout the United States, escalating drug prices are putting immense pressure on state budgets. Several states are looking for ways to push back. Last year, Massachusetts asked the Trump administration for a waiver that would, among other things, allow its Medicaid program to decline to cover costly drugs for which there is limited or inadequate evidence of clinical efficacy. By credibly threatening to exclude such drugs from coverage, Massachusetts hoped to extract price concessions and constrain the fastest-growing part of its Medicaid budget.


Beps, Atap, And The New Tax Dialogue: "A Transatlantic Competition?", Reuven Avi-Yonah, Gianluca Mazzoni Sep 2018

Beps, Atap, And The New Tax Dialogue: "A Transatlantic Competition?", Reuven Avi-Yonah, Gianluca Mazzoni

Articles

Since its launch in 2013, the US actively participated in all aspects of the BEPS project. However, until recently, the general view was that following the conclusion of the BEPS negotiations and the change of Administration the US is stepping back from the BEPS process. While the EU was charging ahead with implementing BEPS through the Anti-Tax Avoidance Directive (ATAD), the US stated that it was already in compliance with all BEPS minimum standards and therefore other than Country-by-Country Reporting (CbCR) it had no further BEPS obligations. The US decided not to sign the Multilateral Instrument (MLI) to implement BEPS ...


Shot Selection, Patrick Barry Sep 2018

Shot Selection, Patrick Barry

Articles

One of the more common pieces of writing advice in our post-Hemingway world is to keep sentences short. Experts on legal writing are particularly fond of this Position — and for good reason. Few judges look at the sentences that appear in briefs, memos, statutes, and contracts and say, "You know what each of those could use? More words." Professor Noah Messing does a particularly good job making the case for short sentences. Brevity, he explains, "reduces the risk that your writing will confuse or irk readers," especially given that "empirical studies show that writing verbosely makes writers sound dumber, not ...


The Rule Of Three, Patrick Barry Sep 2018

The Rule Of Three, Patrick Barry

Articles

Judges use the Rule of Three. Practitioners use the Rule of Three. And so do all manner of legal academics. Yet although many people seem to have an intuitive feel for how useful this rhetorical move is, no extended explanation of its mechanics and variety of forms exists. This essay offers that explanation. It begins with an introduction to the more straightforward form of the rule of three, which simply involves arranging information not in twos or fours or any other set of numbers-but rather in the trusty, melodic structure of threes. It then moves on to a closer look ...


The Persistence Of The Probabilistic Perspective, Richard D. Friedman Aug 2018

The Persistence Of The Probabilistic Perspective, Richard D. Friedman

Articles

The publication now of an essay written by Craig Callen nearly a decade ago is cause for wistful celebration. Even while we are reminded how suddenly and prematurely Craig’s life ended, it is good to have one more academic contribution from him, especially because it is marked by the erudition, thoroughness, gentleness, and humor that characterized him.


Sites Of Storytelling: Supreme Court Confirmation Hearings, Patrick Barry Aug 2018

Sites Of Storytelling: Supreme Court Confirmation Hearings, Patrick Barry

Articles

Supreme Court confirmation hearings have an interesting biographical feature: before nominees even say a word, many words are said about them. This feature— which has been on prominent display in the confirmation hearings of Judge Brett Kavanaugh—is a product of how each senator on the confirmation committee is allowed to make an opening statement. Some of these statements are, as Robert Bork remembers from his own confirmation hearing, “lavish in their praise,” some are “lavish in their denunciations,” and some are “lavish in their equivocations.”1 The result is a disorienting kind of biography by committee, one which produces ...


Paragraphing, Patrick Barry Aug 2018

Paragraphing, Patrick Barry

Articles

Consider treating the word paragraph as a verb. Think of it as something you can do well or poorly, with major consequences for your readers. Good paragraphers, for example, help readers. They make it easy to navigate and absorb information. They don’t flit around, hastily moving on to the next point before fully supporting their first. Nor do they get stuck for too long in one place. Instead, they give a lot of thought not just to the ideas but also to their arrangement—their shape, their balance, their pace.


Alliteration, Restraint, And A Mind At Work, Patrick Barry Aug 2018

Alliteration, Restraint, And A Mind At Work, Patrick Barry

Articles

Alliteration is great—until it’s not. You can pretty quickly overdo it, though I don’t think any major professional sports franchise has yet. The Boston Bruins, the Seattle Seahawks, the Cleveland Cavaliers: these names all have a nice ring to them. As do countless others, from the Washington Wizards to the Tennessee Titans to the Buffalo Bills. The sounds run quickly off your tongue and not unpleasantly into the air. They’re not irritating or obnoxious—unless maybe you’re a fan of the opposing team.


Show And Tell, Patrick Barry Aug 2018

Show And Tell, Patrick Barry

Articles

“Show don’t tell.” Teachers preach these words. Style guides endorse them. And you’d be hard pressed to find any editor or law firm partner who hasn’t offered them as feedback in the last year, month, week, maybe even day. There’s only one problem: “Show don’t tell” is bad advice. Or at least, it is incomplete advice.


Drug Approval In A Learning Health System, W. Nicholson Price Jul 2018

Drug Approval In A Learning Health System, W. Nicholson Price

Articles

The current system of FDA approval seems to make few happy. Some argue FDA approves drugs too slowly; others too quickly. Many agree that FDA—and the health system generally—should gather information after drugs are approved to learn how well they work and how safe they are. This is hard to do. FDA has its own surveillance systems, but those systems face substantial limitations in practical use. Drug companies can also conduct their own studies, but have little incentive to do so, and often fail to fulfil study commitments made to FDA. Proposals to improve this dynamic often suggest ...


Outcome Prediction In The Practice Of Law, Mark K. Osbeck, Michael Gilliland Jul 2018

Outcome Prediction In The Practice Of Law, Mark K. Osbeck, Michael Gilliland

Articles

Business forecasters typically use time-series models to predict future demands, the forecasts informing management decision making and guiding organizational planning. But this type of forecasting is merely a subset of the broader field of predictive analytics, models used by data scientists in all manner of applications, including credit approvals, fraud detection, product-purchase and music-listening recommendations, and even the real-time decisions made by self-driving vehicles. The practice of law requires decisions that must be based on predictions of future legal outcomes, and data scientists are now developing forecasting methods to support the process. In this article, Mark Osbeck and Mike Gilliland ...


Fourth Amendment Constraints On The Technological Monitoring Of Convicted Sex Offenders, Ben A. Mcjunkin, J. J. Prescott Jul 2018

Fourth Amendment Constraints On The Technological Monitoring Of Convicted Sex Offenders, Ben A. Mcjunkin, J. J. Prescott

Articles

More than forty U.S. states currently track at least some of their convicted sex offenders using GPS devices. Many offenders will be monitored for life. The burdens and expense of living indefinitely under constant technological monitoring have been well documented, but most commentators have assumed that these burdens were of no constitutional moment because states have characterized such surveillance as ‘‘civil’’ in character—and courts have seemed to agree. In 2015, however, the Supreme Court decided in Grady v. North Carolina that attaching a GPS monitoring device to a person was a Fourth Amendment search, notwithstanding the ostensibly civil ...


Why Is It Wrong To Punish Thought?, Gabriel S. Mendlow Jun 2018

Why Is It Wrong To Punish Thought?, Gabriel S. Mendlow

Articles

It’s a venerable maxim of criminal jurisprudence that the state must never punish people for their mere thoughts—for their beliefs, desires, fantasies, and unexecuted intentions. This maxim is all but unquestioned, yet its true justification is something of a mystery. In this Essay, I argue that each of the prevailing justifications is deficient, and I conclude by proposing a novel one. The proposed justification captures the widely shared intuition that punishing a person for her mere thoughts isn’t simply disfavored by the balance of reasons but is morally wrongful in itself, an intrinsic (i.e., consequence-independent) injustice ...


My Name Is Not 'Respondent Mother': The Need For Procedural Justice In Child Welfare Cases, Vivek S. Sankaran Jun 2018

My Name Is Not 'Respondent Mother': The Need For Procedural Justice In Child Welfare Cases, Vivek S. Sankaran

Articles

You are a parent whose children are in foster care. Your court hearing is today, after which you hope your children will return home. Upon leaving the bus, you wait in line to enter the court. At the metal detectors you’re told you can’t bring your cell phone inside. With no storage options, you hide your phone in the bushes, hoping it will be there when you return.


Implicit Bias's Failure, Samuel Bagenstos Jun 2018

Implicit Bias's Failure, Samuel Bagenstos

Articles

The 2016 presidential election was a coming-out party of sorts for the concept of implicit bias-and not necessarily in a good way. In answering a question about race relations and the police during the vice-presidential debate, Mike Pence introduced the topic. Offering his explanation for why the Fraternal Order of Police had endorsed the Trump-Pence ticket, Pence said:


The Future Of Law And Mobility, Daniel A. Crane Jun 2018

The Future Of Law And Mobility, Daniel A. Crane

Articles

With the launch of the new Journal of Law and Mobility, the University of Michigan is recognizing the transformative impact of new transportation and mobility technologies, from cars, to trucks, to pedestrians, to drones. The coming transition towards intelligent, automated, and connected mobility systems will transform not only the way people and goods move about, but also the way human safety, privacy, and security are protected, cities are organized, machines and people are connected, and the public and private spheres are defined.