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Full-Text Articles in Law

Religion And Child Custody, Margaret Brinig Oct 2016

Religion And Child Custody, Margaret Brinig

Margaret F Brinig

This piece draws upon divorce pleadings and other records to show how indications of religion (or disaffiliation) that appear in custody agreements and orders (called “parenting plans” in both states studied) affect the course of the proceedings and legal activities over the five years following divorce filing. Some of the apparent findings are normative, but most are merely descriptive and some may be correlative rather than caused by the indicated concern about religion. While parenting plans are accepted by courts only when they are in the best interests of the child (at least in theory), the child’s independent religious ...


Result Inequality In Family Law, Margaret Brinig Oct 2016

Result Inequality In Family Law, Margaret Brinig

Margaret F Brinig

To the extent that family law is governed by statute, all families are treated as though they are the same. This is of course consistent with the equal protection guarantees of the US Constitution as well as those of the states. However, in our pluralistic society, all families are not alike. At birth, some children are born to wealthy, married parents who will always put the children’s interests first and will never engage in domestic violence. Many laws benefit these children, while, according to some academics, they either further disadvantage other children or at best ignore their needs.

This ...


Consumer Preferences For Performance Defaults, Franklin G. Snyder, Ann M. Mirabito Oct 2016

Consumer Preferences For Performance Defaults, Franklin G. Snyder, Ann M. Mirabito

Michigan Business & Entrepreneurial Law Review

Commercial law in the United States is designed to facilitate private transactions, and thus to enforce the presumed intent of the parties, who generally are free to negotiate the terms they choose. But these contracts inevitably have gaps, both because the parties cannot anticipate every situation that might arise from their relationship, and because negotiation is not costless. When courts are faced with these gaps in a litigation context, they supply default terms to fill them. These defaults usually are set to reflect what courts believe similar parties would have agreed to if they had addressed the issue. These “majoritarian ...


From Environmental Rights To Environmental Rule Of Law: A Proposal For Better Environmental Outcomes, Jessica Scott Oct 2016

From Environmental Rights To Environmental Rule Of Law: A Proposal For Better Environmental Outcomes, Jessica Scott

Michigan Journal of Environmental & Administrative Law

With the recent lead contamination crisis in Flint, Michigan, the unfavorable United States country report of the former United Nations Special Rapporteur on the human right to safe drinking water and sanitation seems prescient. The Special Rapporteur’s report highlighted the problem of drinking water contaminated from lead pipes and the disproportionate burdens Black Americans face in accessing safe drinking water. The report argues that the U.S. should address these issues by explicitly recognizing a human right to safe drinking water and sanitation under U.S. law.

Like the Special Rapporteur, much of the literature and some environmental advocates ...


The Future Of Empirical Legal Scholarship: Where Might We Go From Here?, Kathryn Zeiler Oct 2016

The Future Of Empirical Legal Scholarship: Where Might We Go From Here?, Kathryn Zeiler

Faculty Scholarship

The number of empirical legal studies published by academic journals is on the rise. Given theory’s dominance over the last few decades, this is a welcome development. This movement, however, has been plagued by a lack of rigor and a failure of editors to require disclosure of data and procedures that allow for easy replication of published results. Law journals, the editorial boards of which are manned solely by law students, might face the toughest hurdles in ensuring publication of only high quality empirical studies and in implementing and enforcing disclosure policies. While scholars in other fields including economics ...


An Empirical Study Of Implicit Takings., James E. Krier, Stewart E. Sterk Oct 2016

An Empirical Study Of Implicit Takings., James E. Krier, Stewart E. Sterk

Articles

Takings scholarship has long focused on the niceties of Supreme Court doctrine, while ignoring the operation of takings law "on the ground" in the state and lower federal courts, which together decide the vast bulk of all takings cases. This study, based primarily on an empirical analysis of more than 2000 reported decisions ovcr the period 1979 through 2012, attempts to fill that void. This study establishes that the Supreme Court's categorical rules govern almost no state takings cases, and that takings claims based on government regulation almost invariably fail. By contrast, when takings claims arise out of government ...


Does Parental Autonomy Require Equal Custody At Divorce?, Margaret F. Brinig Sep 2016

Does Parental Autonomy Require Equal Custody At Divorce?, Margaret F. Brinig

Margaret F Brinig

This paper considers the affect of amendments to state divorce laws that strengthen their joint custody preference. It does so in the context of suits by noncustodial parents challenging substantive custody standards not requiring equal custody at divorce. The complaint is that most custody laws, by using a best interests standard rather than equally dividing custodial time, violate substantive due process. Further, two states, Iowa and Maine, have recently amended their custody legislation to strongly presume joint physical custody.

After setting out the constitutional problem and describing the legislation in some detail, this paper tests the effects of the change ...


Carrot Or Stick? The Shift From Voluntary To Mandatory Disclosure Of Risk Factors, Karen K. Nelson, Adam C. Pritchard Jun 2016

Carrot Or Stick? The Shift From Voluntary To Mandatory Disclosure Of Risk Factors, Karen K. Nelson, Adam C. Pritchard

Articles

This study investigates risk factor disclosures, examining both the voluntary, incentive-based disclosure regime provided by the safe harbor provision of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act as well as the SEC's subsequent mandate of these disclosures. Firms subject to greater litigation risk disclose more risk factors, update the language more from year to year, and use more readable language than firms with lower litigation risk. These differences in the quality of disclosure are pronounced in the voluntary disclosure regime, but converge following the SEC mandate as low-risk firms improved the quality of their risk factor disclosures. Consistent with these ...


Understanding Noncompetition Agreements: The 2014 Noncompete Survey Project, J. J. Prescott, Norman D. Bishara, Evan Starr Apr 2016

Understanding Noncompetition Agreements: The 2014 Noncompete Survey Project, J. J. Prescott, Norman D. Bishara, Evan Starr

Articles

In recent years, scholars and policymakers have devoted considerable attention to the potential consequences of employment noncompetition agreements and to whether legislatures ought to reform the laws that govern the enforcement of these controversial contractual provisions. Unfortunately, much of this interest—and the content of proposed reforms—derives from anecdotal tales of burdensome noncompetes among low-wage workers and from scholarship that is either limited to slivers of the population (across all studies, less than 1%) or relies on strong assumptions about the incidence of noncompetition agreements. Better understanding of the use of noncompetes and effective noncompetition law reform requires a ...


Judging Judicial Elections, Michael S. Kang, Joanna M. Shepherd Apr 2016

Judging Judicial Elections, Michael S. Kang, Joanna M. Shepherd

Michigan Law Review

Melinda Gann Hall’s new book Attacking Judges: How Campaign Advertising Influences State Supreme Court Elections suggests what seems impossible to many of us—a powerful defense of today’s partisan judicial elections. As judicial races hit new levels of campaign spending and television advertising, there has been a flood of criticism about the increasing partisanship, negativity, and role of money. In view of the “corrosive effect of money on judicial election campaigns” and “attack advertising,” the American Bar Association (ABA) recommends against judicial elections, which are currently used to select roughly 90 percent of state judges. Justice O’Connor ...


Sec Investigations And Securities Class Actions: An Empirical Comparison, Stephen J. Choi, Adam C. Pritchard Mar 2016

Sec Investigations And Securities Class Actions: An Empirical Comparison, Stephen J. Choi, Adam C. Pritchard

Articles

Using actions with both an SEC investigation and a class action as our baseline, we compare the targeting of SEC-only investigations with class-action-only lawsuits. Looking at measures of information asymmetry, we find that investors in the market perceive greater information asymmetry following the public announcement of the underlying violation for class-action-only lawsuits compared with SEC-only investigations. Turning to sanctions, we find that the incidence of top officer resignation is greater for class-action-only lawsuits relative to SEC-only investigations. Our findings are consistent with the private enforcement targeting disclosure violations at least as precisely as (if not more so than) SEC enforcement.


Result Inequality In Family Law, Margaret Brinig Jan 2016

Result Inequality In Family Law, Margaret Brinig

Journal Articles

To the extent that family law is governed by statute, all families are treated as though they are the same. This is of course consistent with the equal protection guarantees of the US Constitution as well as those of the states. However, in our pluralistic society, all families are not alike. At birth, some children are born to wealthy, married parents who will always put the children’s interests first and will never engage in domestic violence. Many laws benefit these children, while, according to some academics, they either further disadvantage other children or at best ignore their needs.

This ...


Does Majority Voting Improve Board Accountability?, Stephen Choi, Jill E. Fisch, Marcel Kahan, Edward B. Rock Jan 2016

Does Majority Voting Improve Board Accountability?, Stephen Choi, Jill E. Fisch, Marcel Kahan, Edward B. Rock

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Directors have traditionally been elected by a plurality of the votes cast. This means that in uncontested elections, a candidate who receives even a single vote is elected. Proponents of “shareholder democracy” have advocated a shift to a majority voting rule in which a candidate must receive a majority of the votes cast to be elected. Over the past decade, they have been successful, and the shift to majority voting has been one of the most popular and successful governance reforms.

Yet critics are sceptical as to whether majority voting improves board accountability. Tellingly, directors of companies with majority voting ...


Reforming (But Not Eliminating) The Parental Discipline Defense, Hazel Blum Jan 2016

Reforming (But Not Eliminating) The Parental Discipline Defense, Hazel Blum

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

This Note argues that although states should retain the parental discipline defense, their legislators should rewrite their statutes to limit the defense to a specific range of disciplinary methods that social science research has shown to have either net-beneficial or net-neutral effects on children. Part II explores religious and cultural attitudes about corporal punishment, including an overview of traditional American attitudes toward corporal punishment. Specifically, it explores how religious teachings, including Evangelical Christianity, Methodism, and Judaism, affect attitudes towards parental discipline. Additionally, Part II will examine the build-up to and aftermath of Sweden’s ban on corporal punishment—the first ...


Portmanteau Ascendant: Post-Release Regulations And Sex Offender Recidivism, J. J. Prescott Jan 2016

Portmanteau Ascendant: Post-Release Regulations And Sex Offender Recidivism, J. J. Prescott

Articles

The purported purpose of sex offender post-release regulations (e.g., community notification and residency restrictions) is the reduction of sex offender recidivism. On their face, these laws seem well-designed and likely to be effective. A simple economic framework of offender behavior can be used to formalize these basic intuitions: in essence, post-release regulations either increase the probability of detection or increase the immediate cost of engaging in the prohibited activity (or both), and so should reduce the likelihood of criminal behavior. These laws aim to incapacitate people outside of prison. Yet, empirical researchers to date have found essentially no reliable ...


Testing Racial Profiling: Empirical Assessment Of Disparate Treatment By Police, Sonja B. Starr Jan 2016

Testing Racial Profiling: Empirical Assessment Of Disparate Treatment By Police, Sonja B. Starr

Articles

In this Article, I explore why measuring disparate-treatment discrimination by police is so difficult, and consider the ways that researchers' existing tools can make headway on these challenges and the ways they fall short. Lab experiments have provided useful information about implicit racial bias, but they cannot directly tell us how these biases actually affect real-world behavior. Meanwhile, for observational researchers, there are various hurdles, but the hardest one to overcome is generally the absence of data on the citizen conduct that at least partially shapes policing decisions. Most crime, and certainly most noncriminal "suspicious" or probable-cause-generating behavior, goes unreported ...


Religion And Child Custody, Margaret Brinig Jan 2016

Religion And Child Custody, Margaret Brinig

Journal Articles

This piece draws upon divorce pleadings and other records to show how indications of religion (or disaffiliation) that appear in custody agreements and orders (called “parenting plans” in both states studied) affect the course of the proceedings and legal activities over the five years following divorce filing. Some of the apparent findings are normative, but most are merely descriptive and some may be correlative rather than caused by the indicated concern about religion. While parenting plans are accepted by courts only when they are in the best interests of the child (at least in theory), the child’s independent religious ...


Separation Of Powers Legitimacy: An Empirical Inquiry Into Norms About Executive Power, Cary Coglianese, Kristin Firth Jan 2016

Separation Of Powers Legitimacy: An Empirical Inquiry Into Norms About Executive Power, Cary Coglianese, Kristin Firth

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

The continuing debate over the President’s directive authority is but one of the many separation-of-powers issues that have confronted courts, scholars, government officials, and the public in recent years. The Supreme Court, for instance, has considered whether the President possesses the power to make appointments of agency heads without Senate confirmation during certain congressional recesses. The Court has passed judgment recently, but has yet to resolve fully, questions about Congress’s authority to constrain the President’s power to remove the heads of administrative agencies. And the Court has considered the limits on Congress’s ability to delegate legislative ...


How Cheap Is Corporate Talk? Comparing Companies' Comments On Regulations With Their Securities Disclosures, James W. Coleman Jan 2016

How Cheap Is Corporate Talk? Comparing Companies' Comments On Regulations With Their Securities Disclosures, James W. Coleman

Faculty Journal Articles and Book Chapters

When companies face adverse proposed rules, they may want to convince regulators that the proposed rules are unworkable and should be changed while, at the same time, reassuring investors that the rules will be manageable. These conflicting incentives may lead to inconsistent messages in regulatory comments and securities disclosures, fueling a perception that corporate submissions to regulators are cheap talk. Despite this perception, there has been no empirical study comparing statements to these two audiences. This project performs such a study, taking the example of comments submitted on the Environmental Protection Agency's Renewable Fuel Standard. This standard provides an ...