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Full-Text Articles in Law

Standards Of Proof In Civil Litigation: An Experiment From Patent Law, David L. Schwartz, Christopher B. Seaman Apr 2013

Standards Of Proof In Civil Litigation: An Experiment From Patent Law, David L. Schwartz, Christopher B. Seaman

Scholarly Articles

Standards of proof are widely assumed to matter in litigation. They operate to allocate the risk of error between litigants, as well as to indicate the relative importance attached to the ultimate decision. But despite their perceived importance, there have been relatively few empirical studies testing jurors’ comprehension and application of standards of proof, particularly in civil litigation. Patent law recently presented an opportunity to assess the potential impact of varying the standard of proof in civil cases. In Microsoft Corp. v. i4i Limited Partnership, the Supreme Court held that a patent’s presumption of validity can only be overcome by …


Do Bad Things Happen When Works Enter The Public Domain?: Empirical Tests Of Copyright Term Extension, Christopher Buccafusco, Paul J. Heald Jan 2013

Do Bad Things Happen When Works Enter The Public Domain?: Empirical Tests Of Copyright Term Extension, Christopher Buccafusco, Paul J. Heald

Faculty Scholarship

According to the current copyright statute, copyrighted works of music, film, and literature will begin to transition into the public domain in 2018. While this will prove a boon for users and creators, it could be disastrous for the owners of these valuable copyrights. Therefore, the next few years will likely witness another round of aggressive lobbying by the film, music, and publishing industries to extend the terms of already-existing works. These industries, and a number of prominent scholars, claim that when works enter the public domain, bad things will happen to them. They worry that works in the public …


The Case For Curation: The Relevance Of Digest And Citator Results In Westlaw And Lexis, Susan Nevelow Mart Jan 2013

The Case For Curation: The Relevance Of Digest And Citator Results In Westlaw And Lexis, Susan Nevelow Mart

Publications

Humans and machines are both involved in the creation of legal research resources. For legal information retrieval systems, the human-curated finding aid is being overtaken by the computer algorithm. But human-curated finding aids still exist. One of them is the West Key Number system. The Key Number system’s headnote classification of case law, started back in the nineteenth century, was and is the creation of humans. The retrospective headnote classification of the cases in Lexis’s case databases, started in 1999, was created primarily - although not exclusively - with computer algorithms. So how do these two very different systems deal …


Unenforceability, Lee Petherbridge Ph.D., Jason Rantanen, R. Polk Wagner Jan 2013

Unenforceability, Lee Petherbridge Ph.D., Jason Rantanen, R. Polk Wagner

All Faculty Scholarship

The patent doctrine of inequitable conduct—which allows a patent to be held unenforceable on the basis of misbehavior by the applicant during patent prosecution—has been the subject of intense criticism from the bench and bar alike. And yet to date there has been no systematic attempt to determine whether the doctrine is or is not working as theorized. This study fills that gap. We evaluate the performance of the inequitable conduct doctrine with a novel methodological approach: by empirically characterizing the differences between patents found unenforceable and several other types of patents (unlitigated, litigated, invalid, obvious, and underdisclosed), we use …


How Jurors Evaluate Fingerprint Evidence: The Relative Importance Of Match Language, Method Information, And Error Acknowledgment, Brandon L. Garrett, Gregory Mitchell Jan 2013

How Jurors Evaluate Fingerprint Evidence: The Relative Importance Of Match Language, Method Information, And Error Acknowledgment, Brandon L. Garrett, Gregory Mitchell

Faculty Scholarship

Fingerprint examiners use a variety of terms and phrases to describe a finding of a match between a defendant's fingerprints and fingerprint impressions collected from a crime scene. Despite the importance and ubiquity of fingerprint evidence in criminal cases, no prior studies examine how jurors evaluate such evidence. We present two studies examining the impact of different match phrases, method descriptions, and statements about possible examiner error on the weight given to fingerprint identification evidence by laypersons. In both studies, the particular phrase chosen to describe the finding of a match-whether simple and imprecise or detailed and claiming near certainty-had …


Rethinking The Principal-Agent Theory Of Judging, Rafael I. Pardo, Jonathan Remy Nash Jan 2013

Rethinking The Principal-Agent Theory Of Judging, Rafael I. Pardo, Jonathan Remy Nash

Scholarship@WashULaw

This Essay offers new insights into understanding the relationship between higher and lower courts and responds to the extant literature that has characterized the relationship as one involving a principal and an agent. We challenge the underpinnings of the principal-agent understanding of judicial hierarchies and identify problems with the theory’s applicability in this context. While principals ordinarily select their agents, higher court judges usually do not select lower court judges. Moreover, while lower court judges may cast votes with an eye to the possibility of elevation to a higher court, the higher court judges who review the lower court’s decisions …


The First Year Of "Say On Pay" Under Dodd-Frank: An Empirical Analysis And Look Forward, Randall Thomas, James F. Cotter, Alan R. Palmiter Jan 2013

The First Year Of "Say On Pay" Under Dodd-Frank: An Empirical Analysis And Look Forward, Randall Thomas, James F. Cotter, Alan R. Palmiter

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

Using voting data from the first year of say-on-pay votes under Dodd- Frank, we look at the patterns of shareholder voting in advisory votes on exec- utive pay. Consistent with the more limited say-on-pay voting before Dodd- Frank, we find that shareholders in the first year under Dodd-Frank generally gave broad support to management pay packages. But not all pay packages received strong shareholder support. At some companies, management suf- fered the embarrassment of failed say-on-pay votes-that is, less than fifty per- cent of their company's shareholders voted in favor of the proposal. In particular, we find that poorly performing …