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Contracts

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Full-Text Articles in Law

Empirical Studies Of Contract, Zev J. Eigen Jan 2012

Empirical Studies Of Contract, Zev J. Eigen

Faculty Working Papers

Since the mid 2000s, a cottage industry has slowly blossomed of empirical research dedicated to advancing accounts of contracts "on the books"--accounting for what contracts tend to purportedly obligate signers to do, and contracts "in action"--accounting for how contracting parties tend to behave. This article reviews this literature, which spans several disciplines, most notably law, economics, and management, identifying eight categories of empirical questions in common across all disciplines, highlighting key findings, points of consensus, and noting areas most pressingly in need of additional research.


A Moral Contractual Approach To Labor Law Reform: A Template For Using Ethical Principles To Regulate Behavior Where Law Failed To Do So Effectively, Zev J. Eigen, David S. Sherwyn Jan 2011

A Moral Contractual Approach To Labor Law Reform: A Template For Using Ethical Principles To Regulate Behavior Where Law Failed To Do So Effectively, Zev J. Eigen, David S. Sherwyn

Faculty Working Papers

If laws cease to work as they should or as intended, legislators and scholars propose new laws to replace or amend them. This paper posits an alternative—offering regulated parties the opportunity to contractually bind themselves to behave ethically. The perfect test-case for this proposal is labor law, because (1) labor law has not been amended for decades, (2) proposals to amend it have failed for political reasons, and are focused on union election win rates, and less on the election process itself, (3) it is an area of law already statutorily regulating parties' reciprocal contractual obligations, and (4) moral means …


Consumer Harm Acts? An Economic Analysis Of Private Actions Under State Consumer Protection Acts, Henry N. Butler, Jason S. Johnston Jan 2009

Consumer Harm Acts? An Economic Analysis Of Private Actions Under State Consumer Protection Acts, Henry N. Butler, Jason S. Johnston

Faculty Working Papers

State Consumer Protection Acts (CPAs) were adopted in the 1960s and 1970s to protect consumers from unfair and deceptive practices that would not be redressed but for the existence of the acts. In this sense, CPAs were designed to fill existing gaps in market, legal and regulatory protections of consumers. CPAs were designed to solve two simple economic problems: 1) individual consumers often do not have the incentive or means to pursue individual claims against mass marketers who engage in unfair and deceptive practices; and, 2) because of the difficulty of establishing elements of either common law fraud or breach …


Litigation And The Optimal Combination Of Vague And Precise Clauses In Contracts, Alvaro E. Bustos Jan 2008

Litigation And The Optimal Combination Of Vague And Precise Clauses In Contracts, Alvaro E. Bustos

Faculty Working Papers

In this paper we determine the optimal combination of precise and vague clauses written in contracts when the parties face writing and enforcement costs, the second ones in the form of litigation. We show that the parties may prefer to write vague instead of precise clauses not only because they are cheaper to write but also because they are cheaper to enforce. We extend Battigalli and Maggi (2002) to model the decision of a principal who chooses clauses to describe the actions that an agent has to perform. As both players observe nature imperfectly they may call for a court …


Coordinating In The Shadow Of The Law: Two Contextualized Tests Of The Focal Point Theory Of Legal Compliance, Richard H. Mcadams, Janice Nadler Jan 2008

Coordinating In The Shadow Of The Law: Two Contextualized Tests Of The Focal Point Theory Of Legal Compliance, Richard H. Mcadams, Janice Nadler

Faculty Working Papers

In situations where people have an incentive to coordinate their behavior, law can provide a framework for understanding and predicting what others are likely to do. According to the focal point theory of expressive law, the law's articulation of a behavior can sometimes create self-fulfilling expectations that it will occur. Existing theories of legal compliance emphasize the effect of sanctions or legitimacy; we argue that, in addition to sanctions and legitimacy, law can also influence compliance simply by making one outcome salient. We tested this claim in two experiments where sanctions and legitimacy were held constant. Experiment 1 demonstrated that …