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Full-Text Articles in Law

Case Watch: Royston, Rayzor, Vickery & Williams Llp V. Lopez, Ramona L. Lampley Dec 2015

Case Watch: Royston, Rayzor, Vickery & Williams Llp V. Lopez, Ramona L. Lampley

Faculty Articles

The Texas Supreme Court effectively gave a “thumbs-up” to attorney-client arbitration agreements in Royston, Rayzor, Vickery, & Williams, LLP v. Lopez, 467 S.W.3d 494 (Tex. 2015), reh’g denied (Sept. 11, 2015). The plaintiff, Frank Lopez, hired Royston, Rayzor to represent him in a divorce. As part of the representation agreement, Lopez agreed to arbitrate any disputes arising out of the attorney-client relationship, but the law firm excluded from the arbitration agreement any claims it might have against Lopez for expenses or fees. Lopez later sued Royston, Rayzor and the firm moved to compel arbitration.

Lopez contended that the ...


Glass Half Full: The Decline And Rebirth Of The Legal Profession (Book Review), Michael S. Ariens Sep 2015

Glass Half Full: The Decline And Rebirth Of The Legal Profession (Book Review), Michael S. Ariens

Faculty Articles

No abstract provided.


Denying The Dyad: How Criminalizing Pregnant Use Harms The Baby, Taxpayers And Vulnerable Women, Melissa Ballengee Alexander Jul 2015

Denying The Dyad: How Criminalizing Pregnant Use Harms The Baby, Taxpayers And Vulnerable Women, Melissa Ballengee Alexander

Faculty Articles

No abstract provided.


Daimler And The Jurisdictional Triskelion, Zoe Niesel Jul 2015

Daimler And The Jurisdictional Triskelion, Zoe Niesel

Faculty Articles

No abstract provided.


Post-9/11 Veterans: Welcoming Them Home As Colleagues And Clients, Patricia E. Roberts Jul 2015

Post-9/11 Veterans: Welcoming Them Home As Colleagues And Clients, Patricia E. Roberts

Faculty Articles

No abstract provided.


The Aba Got It Right: Veterans Need Our Help, Patricia E. Roberts Apr 2015

The Aba Got It Right: Veterans Need Our Help, Patricia E. Roberts

Faculty Articles

No abstract provided.


The High Costs Of Incivility, David A. Grenardo Apr 2015

The High Costs Of Incivility, David A. Grenardo

Faculty Articles

Many law students come to law school after being indoctrinated by television and movies, believing that an effective lawyer must be obstreperous, obnoxious, and rude to be successful. Lawyers, they believe, must fight their opponents on every point at every corner if they want to represent their clients zealously and adequately.

Law students must recognize that incivility by lawyers can lead to significant negative consequences for the client, the attorney herself, and the legal system. Law students must also understand that lawyers can treat opposing counsel with civility while still providing robust, vigorous, and adversarial representation for their clients. This ...


If The Pope Is Infallible, Why Does He Need Lawyers?, Bill Piatt Jan 2015

If The Pope Is Infallible, Why Does He Need Lawyers?, Bill Piatt

Faculty Articles

One of the most widely misunderstood teachings of the Catholic Church involves the doctrine of papal infallibility. As a theological matter, papal infallibility is quite narrow. However, the widespread misconception that all Catholics must believe their Pope cannot make mistakes helped create resentment against Catholics for centuries, which has taken the form of physical attacks, political exclusion, and virulent anti-Catholic propaganda.

While the Catholic Church is no longer under direct physical attack, contemporaneous efforts seek to hold the Pope and the Church civilly and criminally liable in various contexts. In some instances, the Pope, acting as the head of the ...


Brougham’S Ghost, Michael S. Ariens Jan 2015

Brougham’S Ghost, Michael S. Ariens

Faculty Articles

In defending Queen Caroline in the House of Lords, Henry Brougham declared, “[a]n advocate, by the sacred duty of his connection with his client, knows, in the discharge of that office, but one person in the world, that client and none other.” Brougham’s ethic of advocacy has been cited repeatedly as stating the American lawyer’s duty of zealous representation of a client. It has often been called the “classic statement” of zealous representation and representing the “traditional view of the lawyer’s role.”

This essay challenges these conclusions. Brougham’s rhetoric was neither a classic statement of ...


The Texas Rules Of Evidence: Something Old, Something New, And Something Changed, David A. Schlueter Jan 2015

The Texas Rules Of Evidence: Something Old, Something New, And Something Changed, David A. Schlueter

Faculty Articles

On November 19, 2014, the Texas Supreme Court issued an Order amending all of the Texas Rules of Evidence, effective April 1, 2015. In its Order, the Court explained that the amendments were part of an effort to “restyle” the Rules, to make them as consistent as possible with the Federal Rules of Evidence, and to make them easier to understand.

The 2015 amendments to the Texas Rules of Evidence are a commendable step toward making the Rules more user-friendly. It is clear to even the casual reader that the reformatting of the Rules, through the use of consistent and ...


Long Live Bohatch: Why A Law Firm Partner Can Be Expelled For Following The Rules Of Professional Conduct, David A. Grenardo Jan 2015

Long Live Bohatch: Why A Law Firm Partner Can Be Expelled For Following The Rules Of Professional Conduct, David A. Grenardo

Faculty Articles

No abstract provided.


Governmental Power Versus Individual Liberty, Vincent R. Johnson Jan 2015

Governmental Power Versus Individual Liberty, Vincent R. Johnson

Faculty Articles

Father, Son, and Constitution by Alexander Wohl is a major contribution to legal scholarship. This dual biography focuses on two public figures, each of whom played a leading role in addressing the most challenging legal questions of their day. The subjects of the book are Supreme Court Justice Tom C. Clark and his son Ramsey Clark, the most liberal attorney general in American history. The Clarks’ stories are told against a backdrop of the continuing American struggle to find the proper balance between governmental power and individual liberty.

The public careers of Tom and Ramsey Clark were largely sequential, but ...


Internprofessional Education, Patricia E. Roberts Jan 2015

Internprofessional Education, Patricia E. Roberts

Faculty Articles

As legal educators consider how to improve the outcomes of legal education, maximizing the knowledge, skills, and values taught during the law school experience, consideration should be given to increasing interprofessional learning opportunities in the curricula. As Best Practices for Legal Education suggested, the creative thinking necessary for effective problem-solving includes an understanding of interprofessional dimensions of practice, but interprofessional opportunities are still the exception rather than the norm in legal education. Interprofessional legal education intentionally asks law students to blend the knowledge, skills, and values of two or more professions in order to address complex legal problems. Placing students ...


American Military Justice: Responding To The Siren Songs For Reform, David A. Schlueter Jan 2015

American Military Justice: Responding To The Siren Songs For Reform, David A. Schlueter

Faculty Articles

Today, the American military justice system is being subjected to sweet and enticing calls for reform. At first hearing, the well-intentioned proposed reforms appeal to a sense of justice. On closer examination, however, those proposed reforms threaten the essence and functionality of an effective and efficient system of criminal justice that is applied in world-wide settings, in both peacetime and in war.

In the last several decades, an increasing number of commentators have recommended reforms to virtually every component of the military system. The most recent round of proposals arose from frustration and anger that many feel towards the military ...


Vets Just Want Fair Benefits, Patricia E. Roberts Jan 2015

Vets Just Want Fair Benefits, Patricia E. Roberts

Faculty Articles

No abstract provided.


The Bitcoin Blockchain As Financial Market Infrastructure: A Consideration Of Operational Risk, Angela Walch Jan 2015

The Bitcoin Blockchain As Financial Market Infrastructure: A Consideration Of Operational Risk, Angela Walch

Faculty Articles

“Blockchain” is the word on the street these days, with every significant financial institution experimenting with this new technology. Many say that this remarkable innovation could radically transform our financial system, eliminating the costs and inefficiencies that plague our existing financial infrastructures. Venture capital investments are pouring into blockchain startups, which are scrambling to disrupt the “quadrillion” dollar markets represented by existing financial market infrastructures. A debate rages over whether public, “permissionless” blockchains (like Bitcoin’s) or private, “permissioned” blockchains are more desirable.

Amidst this flurry of innovation and investment, this paper inquires into the suitability of the Bitcoin blockchain ...


Expanding The Ponzi Scheme Presumption, David R. Hague Jan 2015

Expanding The Ponzi Scheme Presumption, David R. Hague

Faculty Articles

Ponzi schemes and other investment frauds inevitably end up in bankruptcy or receivership, leaving behind numerous victims—many of whom invested their life savings in the scheme without any knowledge of its fraudulent nature. Although trustees and receivers can sometimes recover some of the fraudulently acquired funds from the assets of the perpetrators, in most cases, those assets fall woefully short of the victims’ losses. This leads to fraudulent transfer lawsuits (claw-back actions) against those who are suspected to have profited from the wrongdoing.

A transfer is fraudulent if it was made with the actual intent to defraud, but actual ...


Improving The Law School Classroom And Experience Through Prayer: An Empirical Study, David A. Grenardo Jan 2015

Improving The Law School Classroom And Experience Through Prayer: An Empirical Study, David A. Grenardo

Faculty Articles

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. once said, “To be a Christian without prayer is no more possible than to be alive without breathing.” There are approximately fifty religiously affiliated law schools in the United States. As faith-based communities, these law schools can integrate their faiths into the education they provide by, among other things, incorporating in the classroom a central characteristic of most religions – prayer.

This article includes anonymous survey responses from students at four different Catholic law schools across the nation concerning whether the students liked the fact that their professors prayed at the beginning of class. The article ...


“Underdog” Arbitration: A Plan For Transparency, Ramona L. Lampley Jan 2015

“Underdog” Arbitration: A Plan For Transparency, Ramona L. Lampley

Faculty Articles

The use of mandatory, pre-dispute arbitration clauses in consumer, employment, health-care, and even nursing home agreements is ever-increasing, even though the general public has distrust and a lack of understanding of the nature of arbitration. The Supreme Court in AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion, and then in American Express Co. v. Italian Colors Restaurant, has signaled firmly that mandatory pre-dispute arbitration is here to stay. This is true even for individual low-value claims in which one party, say the consumer or employee, has little or no bargaining power. I call these claims “underdog claims.” There have been numerous proposals to amend the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) to exclude such claims from mandatory pre-dispute arbitration agreements and numerous criticisms raised in reaction to the Court’s jurisprudence. But with the Supreme Court’s theoretical view that arbitrating underdog claims is fair, these criticisms have gone unheeded by the majority of the Court. Now the question is how should we approach this new field of dispute resolution in which so many claims will be resolved? This Article analyzes the meritorious criticisms of underdog arbitration, which include bias, the repeat-player effect, the removal of publicity, the lack of judicial oversight, and a general concern about the lack of transparency. Then I propose a three-part solution for promoting transparency to establish a system in which underdog arbitration can work. I propose that the FAA be amended to require transparency in consumer and employee claims through: (1) uniform data reporting at the arbitration service-provider level; (2) requiring a written statement of decision in such disputes; and (3) data-reporting requirements by the business entity imposing mandatory pre-dispute arbitration on the employee/consumer stake-holder


Contracting Away Your Right To Sue: What You Need To Know About Arbitration, Ramona L. Lampley Jan 2015

Contracting Away Your Right To Sue: What You Need To Know About Arbitration, Ramona L. Lampley

Faculty Articles

Arbitration agreements that typically accompany credit card agreements and other services can work well—or work disastrously. What many consumers do not realize is that in numerous everyday interactions with banks, employers and retailers, they are waiving their right to sue in court if a dispute does arise. Given the lack of consumer familiarity with arbitration, there is an inherent fear and distrust of the system often referred to either as alternative dispute resolution or private dispute resolution. Some of that public fear and distrust is well-founded. We know that private dispute resolution poses the opportunity for businesses to potentially ...


The Fine Print, Ramona L. Lampley Jan 2015

The Fine Print, Ramona L. Lampley

Faculty Articles

A recent study by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”), the federal agency tasked with “empowering consumers to take control over their economic lives,” found that more than 50 percent of the market for consumer credit cards had arbitration agreements, and almost 100 percent of storefront payday lending contracts require its customers to take their disputes to binding arbitration. The same study found that most consumers do not know their credit cards have a binding arbitration agreement and that it is not a primary concern for consumers in deciding which credit cards to obtain.

However, almost all arbitration agreements in ...


Piercing The Fiduciary Veil, Colin P. Marks Jan 2015

Piercing The Fiduciary Veil, Colin P. Marks

Faculty Articles

Limited partnerships (LPs) and limited liability companies (LLCs) permit formation with a unique management structure in that these entities may be managed by another limited liability entity, such as a corporation. Thus, the true managers are those individuals who manage the manager. It is well settled that the managing entity, such as a corporate general partner, owes default fiduciary duties, but what of these second-tier managers? Technically, it is the managing entity that owes the duties, not the managing entity’s owners, officers, and directors, yet courts have struggled with strict adherence to this separation when it would seem inequitable ...


Our Court Masters, Chad J. Pomeroy Jan 2015

Our Court Masters, Chad J. Pomeroy

Faculty Articles

In 1995, Utah became the first state to pass a bill prohibiting the recognition of same-sex marriages performed in other states and nations. Thereafter, in 2004, Utah voters approved a ballot referendum on Utah Constitutional Amendment 3, which defined marriage as the legal union between a man and a woman and which restricted unmarried civil unions. This referendum was approved by 65.9% of those who voted on it. That is, 593,297 Utah citizens (of the approximately 900,000 who voted) voted to approve the amendment.

Then, in March of 2013, three couples filed suit in the United States ...


All Your Air Right Are Belong To Us, Chad J. Pomeroy Jan 2015

All Your Air Right Are Belong To Us, Chad J. Pomeroy

Faculty Articles

Privacy and property rights are tricky subjects for a variety of reasons. One reason is that they have a unique relationship with each other, and this Article focuses on one of those areas of intersection—that of air rights and invasion of privacy. This is a timely topic due to the advent of drones, and this Article will argue that drone surveillance constitutes common law trespass and that any statute or regulation that permits such activity is in derogation of common law and so should be subject to particularly careful thought and consideration.

This is not as straightforward a thesis ...


Courts Gone “Irrationally Biased” In Favor Of The Federal Arbitrations Act?—Enforcing Arbitration Provisions In Standardized Applications And Marginalizing Consumer-Protection, Antidiscrimination, And States’ Contract Laws: A 1925–2014 Legal And Empirical Analysis, Willy E. Rice Jan 2015

Courts Gone “Irrationally Biased” In Favor Of The Federal Arbitrations Act?—Enforcing Arbitration Provisions In Standardized Applications And Marginalizing Consumer-Protection, Antidiscrimination, And States’ Contract Laws: A 1925–2014 Legal And Empirical Analysis, Willy E. Rice

Faculty Articles

Spanning nearly forty years, the Supreme Court has issued multiple decisions and stated categorically that “judicial hostility to arbitration” was the sole impetus behind Congress’s decision to enact the Federal Arbitration Act of 1925. In fact, before the FAA, systemic trade-specific problems and practices generated heated disputes and widespread litigation among merchants and trade organizations. Thus, to arrest those constituents’ concerns, Congress enacted the FAA. Briefly, under the FAA section 2, arbitration is mandatory if a contractual arbitration provision is valid and a controversy “arises out of the contract.” However, common-law rules of contract formation are equally clear: Standing ...


Convergence: A Meeting Responds To Cries Of Desperation, David Bristol, Lee J. Teran, Gretchen Haynes Jan 2015

Convergence: A Meeting Responds To Cries Of Desperation, David Bristol, Lee J. Teran, Gretchen Haynes

Faculty Articles

No abstract provided.


Legal Malpractice In International Business Transactions, Vincent R. Johnson Jan 2015

Legal Malpractice In International Business Transactions, Vincent R. Johnson

Faculty Articles

International business transactions are often unavoidably linked to specialized areas of law. Lawyers increase their risk of committing legal malpractice when representing international clients in business transactions because they may find themselves in a precarious position by accepting work they are inexperienced to perform. Moreover, a client may expand into international waters and their lawyer may not be cognizant of the legal consequences. While malpractice may be asserted through negligence, fraud, breach of contract and other failures of standard of care, failure to know the law is no excuse. However, the standard of care depends on whether the defendant acted ...


International Financial Law: The Case Against Close-Out Netting, Vincent R. Johnson Jan 2015

International Financial Law: The Case Against Close-Out Netting, Vincent R. Johnson

Faculty Articles

In financial transactions today, a practice called “close-out netting” plays a key role in controlling and allocating risks. If anchored in the parties’ chosen contractual language and recognized by law, close-out netting can circumvent normal bankruptcy processes by providing for the acceleration of mutual obligations and the efficient calculations and settlement of the net balance. When correctly implemented, close-out netting can eliminate the risk that arises under ordinary bankruptcy principles.

Despite the support for close-out netting by lenders, scholars, regulators, and policy makers, a few attentive observers of financial law argue that close-out netting is unsound, and the argument against ...


The Ancient Magna Carta And The Modern Rule Of Law: 1215 To 2015, Vincent R. Johnson Jan 2015

The Ancient Magna Carta And The Modern Rule Of Law: 1215 To 2015, Vincent R. Johnson

Faculty Articles

This article argues the text of the Magna Carta, now 800 years old, and reflects many of the values that are at the center of the modern concept of the Rule of Law. A careful review of its provisions reveals the Magna Carta demonstrates a strong commitment to the resolution of disputes based on rules and procedures that are consistent, accessible, transparent, and fair; and to the development of a legal system characterized by official accountability and respect for human dignity.


The Great Charter, Vincent R. Johnson Jan 2015

The Great Charter, Vincent R. Johnson

Faculty Articles

A look at the history and legacy of the Magna Carta elucidates the many ways in which it shaped American jurisprudence and the law of Texas. The Magna Carta is held in high regard because the unknown drafters understood the importance of legal principles, fair procedures, proportional punishment, official accountability, and respect for human dignity. Its unquestionable commitment to the primacy of legal principles and anticipation of the development of judicial ethics significantly influenced and contributed to the construction and content of the Texas Constitution, Bill of Rights, and many Texas cities’ ethics codes. Although it was intensely focused on ...