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Full-Text Articles in Law

"You're Fired!": The Common Law Should Respond With The Refashioned Tort Of Abusive Discharge, William R. Corbett Jan 2020

"You're Fired!": The Common Law Should Respond With The Refashioned Tort Of Abusive Discharge, William R. Corbett

Journal Articles

An at will prerogative without limits could be suffered only in an anarchy, and there not for long--it certainly cannot be suffered in a society such as ours without weakening the bond of counter balancing rights and obligations that holds such societies together. Thus, while there may be a right to terminate a contract at will for no reason, or for an arbitrary or irrational reason, there can be no right to terminate such a contract for an unlawful reason or purpose that contravenes public policy. A different interpretation would encourage and sanction lawlessness, which law by its very nature ...


Delaware As Deal Arbiter, Christina M. Sautter Jan 2020

Delaware As Deal Arbiter, Christina M. Sautter

Journal Articles

Most would agree that the Delaware courts are the leading jurists in the resolution of corporate conflicts, particularly in the Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A) context. Arguably a greater role that Delaware plays is that of a norm setter, both with respect to the expectations of management conduct in the M&A process and with respect to deal terms, particularly deal protection devices. Like in any relationship, there is a "give and take" between practitioners and Delaware. That is, practitioners are "on the front lines," often innovating with respect to new deal structures and deal terms. After some time, Delaware has ...


Insurance Policies: The Grandparents Of Contractual Black Holes, Chris French Jan 2017

Insurance Policies: The Grandparents Of Contractual Black Holes, Chris French

Journal Articles

In their recent article, The Black Hole Problem in Commercial Boilerplate, Professors Stephen Choi, Mitu Gulati, and Robert Scott identify a phenomenon found in standardized contracts they describe as “contractual black holes.” The concept of black holes comes from theoretical physics. Under the original hypothesis, the gravitational pull of a black hole is so strong that once light or information is pulled past an event horizon into a black hole, it cannot escape. In recent years, the theory has been reformulated and now the hypothesis is that some information can escape, but it is so degraded that it is virtually ...


The Aftermath Of Catastrophes: Valuing Business Interruption Insurance Losses, Chris French Jan 2014

The Aftermath Of Catastrophes: Valuing Business Interruption Insurance Losses, Chris French

Journal Articles

With the onslaught of tornadoes, hurricanes, and floods in recent years, business interruption losses have been staggering. Many businesses do not survive such catastrophes. Even business owners that purchased business interruption insurance, which is intended to ensure that a business’s revenue stream continues during an interruption in its operations, often find that their insurers have dramatically different views regarding the amount of the losses that should be reimbursed. The reason for this disparity in views is that the loss valuation provisions in business interruption insurance policies provide very little guidance regarding how business interruption losses should be calculated. Thus ...


Segmented Settlements Are Not The Answer: A Response To Professor Squire’S Article, How Collective Settlements Camouflage The Costs Of Shareholder Lawsuits, Christopher C. French Jan 2013

Segmented Settlements Are Not The Answer: A Response To Professor Squire’S Article, How Collective Settlements Camouflage The Costs Of Shareholder Lawsuits, Christopher C. French

Journal Articles

In his recent article, Professor Richard Squire offers a provocative theory in which he claims the underlying claimants in shareholder litigation against corporate policyholders are overcompensated due to what he describes as “cramdown” settlements, under which insurers are forced to settle due to the “duty to contribute” that arises under multi-layered directors and officers (“D&O”) insurance programs. He also offers a novel idea regarding how this problem could be fixed by what he refers to as “segmented” settlements in which each insurer and the policyholder would be allowed to settle separately and consider only its own interests in doing ...


The “Ensuing Loss” Clause In Insurance Policies: The Forgotten And Misunderstood Antidote To Anti-Concurrent Causation Exclusions, Chris French Jan 2012

The “Ensuing Loss” Clause In Insurance Policies: The Forgotten And Misunderstood Antidote To Anti-Concurrent Causation Exclusions, Chris French

Journal Articles

As a result of the 1906 earthquake and fire in San Francisco which destroyed the city, a clause known as the “ensuing loss” clause was created to address concurrent causation situations in which a loss follows both a covered peril and an excluded peril. Ensuing loss clauses appear in the exclusions section of such policies and in essence they provide that coverage for a loss caused by an excluded peril is nonetheless covered if the loss “ensues” from a covered peril. Today, ensuing loss clauses are found in “all risk” property and homeowners policies, which cover all losses except for ...


Debunking The Myth That Insurance Coverage Is Not Available Or Allowed For Intentional Torts Or Damages, Christopher French Jan 2012

Debunking The Myth That Insurance Coverage Is Not Available Or Allowed For Intentional Torts Or Damages, Christopher French

Journal Articles

Over the years, a myth has developed that insurance coverage is not available or allowed for intentional injuries or damage. This myth has two primary bases: one, the “fortuity” doctrine, which provides that insurance should only cover losses that happen by chance; and two, public policy, which allegedly disfavors allowing insurance for intentional injuries or damage. This article dispels that myth. Many types of liability insurance policies expressly cover intentional torts including trademark infringement, copyright infringement, invasion of privacy, defamation, disparagement, and improper employment practices such as discrimination. In addition, punitive damages, which typically are awarded for intentional misconduct, are ...


Federal Constitutions, Global Governance, And The Role Of Forests In Regulating Climate Change, Blake Hudson Jan 2012

Federal Constitutions, Global Governance, And The Role Of Forests In Regulating Climate Change, Blake Hudson

Journal Articles

Federal systems of government present more difficulties for international treaty formation than perhaps any other form of governance. Federal constitutions that grant subnational governments virtually exclusive regulatory authority over certain subject matter may constrain national governments during international negotiations - a national government that cannot constitutionally bind subnational governments to an international agreement cannot freely arrange its international obligations. While federal nations that grant subnational governments exclusive regulatory control obviously place value on stringent decentralization and the benefits it provides in those regulatory areas, the difficulty lies in striking a balance between global governance and constitutional decentralization in federal systems. Recent ...


Finding Room For Fairness In Formalism--The Sliding Scale Approach To Unconscionability, Melissa T. Lonegrass Jan 2012

Finding Room For Fairness In Formalism--The Sliding Scale Approach To Unconscionability, Melissa T. Lonegrass

Journal Articles

This Article evaluates the sliding scale approach to unconscionability, defends its use, and advocates for its continued and expanded application to consumer standard form contracts. Part I describes the sliding scale approach and its recent popularity in state courts, thereby filling a gap in the scholarly doctrine, which has to date failed to fully examine this trend. Parts II and III defend the sliding scale approach, praising its potential to align the unconscionability analysis with interdisciplinary research regarding consumer behavior and to balance formalist concerns about judicial regulation of unfair terms in standard form contracts. Finally, Part IV calls for ...


Construction Defects: Are They “Occurrences”?, Chris French Jan 2011

Construction Defects: Are They “Occurrences”?, Chris French

Journal Articles

An issue in the area of insurance law that has been litigated frequently in recent years is whether construction defects are “occurrences” under Commercial General Liability (“CGL”) insurance policies. The courts have been divided in deciding the issue and in their approaches to analyzing the issue. This article addresses how the issue should be analyzed and concludes that construction defects are “occurrences”. The relevant rules of insurance policy interpretation dictate that construction defects are “occurrences”. Policy language should be interpreted in such a way as to fulfill the reasonable expectations of the policyholder when the policy is construed as a ...


The “Non-Cumulation Clause”: An “Other Insurance” Clause By Another Name, Chris French Jan 2011

The “Non-Cumulation Clause”: An “Other Insurance” Clause By Another Name, Chris French

Journal Articles

How long-tail liability claims such as asbestos bodily injury claims and environmental property damage claims are allocated among multiple triggered policy years can result in the shifting of tens or hundreds of millions of dollars from one party to another. In recent years, insurers have argued that clauses commonly titled, “Prior Insurance and Non-Cumulation of Liability” (referred to herein as “Non-Cumulation Clauses”), which are found in commercial liability policies, should be applied to reduce or eliminate their coverage responsibilities for long-tail liability claims by shifting their coverage responsibilities to insurers that issued policies in earlier policy years. The insurers’ argument ...


Are All Contracts Alike?, Margaret F. Brinig Jan 2008

Are All Contracts Alike?, Margaret F. Brinig

Journal Articles

No abstract provided.


Penalty Defaults In Family Law: The Case Of Child Custody, Margaret F. Brinig Jan 2006

Penalty Defaults In Family Law: The Case Of Child Custody, Margaret F. Brinig

Journal Articles

This paper considers whether an amendment to state divorce laws that strengthens its joint custody preference operates as a traditional default rule, specifying what most divorcing couples would choose or as a penalty default rule the parties will attempt to contract around.

While the Oregon statutes that frame our discussion here, like most state laws, do not state an explicit preference for joint custody, shared custody is certainly encouraged by Section 107.179, which refers cases in which the parties cannot agree on joint custody to mediation and by Section 107.105, which requires the court to consider awarding custody ...


Unhappy Contracts: The Case Of Divorce Settlements, Margaret F. Brinig Jan 2005

Unhappy Contracts: The Case Of Divorce Settlements, Margaret F. Brinig

Journal Articles

This paper examines a particular type of contracts that is, sadly, increasingly frequent: the agreements produced by divorcing couples. They are unhappy contracts, agreements produced as a necessary part of exit from what is now suboptimal marriage. They are virtually required by many states and are, in theory at least, closely monitored by courts since, when children are involved, they will be incorporated into court orders.What parties to unhappy contracts do is attempt to minimize losses, rather than maximize gain. How are contracts structured that will do this, and how does a difference in the size or power of ...


Co-Operative Marketing--Statutes Providing Penalty Against Third Persons Who Induce Breach Of Marketing Contracts, Thomas F. Broden Jan 1947

Co-Operative Marketing--Statutes Providing Penalty Against Third Persons Who Induce Breach Of Marketing Contracts, Thomas F. Broden

Journal Articles

No abstract provided.