Exploring New Approaches to Unsettled Legal Questions

Author: Michael Klurfeld

Reaffirming the ADA’s Promise: Disability Accommodation During Arrests

by Andrew Breland*

How should police officers take into account the different needs of a person with disabilities during an arrest? In this Contribution, Andrew Breland (’18) examines the role of the Americans with Disabilities Act in governing arrests and investigations by police of persons with disabilities. Ultimately, this Contribution argues that the ADA’s reasonable accommodation requirement modifies what searches and seizures of individuals with disabilities are considered reasonable under the Fourth Amendment.

Permitting Around the Constitution: Gun License Process After Heller

by Deepa Devanathan*

To what extent can state actors limit an individual’s Second Amendment right after District of Columbia v. Heller? In this Contribution, Deepa Devanathan (’19) argues that to properly balance Second Amendment rights with a State’s need to protect people from gun violence, gun permit schemes that cover both open carry and concealed carry must include a procedural right to appeal permit denials and “good cause” requirements to get permits.

Is This What We Bargained For?: Allowing the Preemption of State Law through Collective Bargaining Agreements

by Micaela Heery*

Can a term in a collective bargaining agreement displace state law under any circumstance? How should a court balance the need for consistent, nationwide labor standards with constitutional concerns for preserving States’ police powers? In this Contribution, Micaela Heery (’19) offers an analytical framework for resolving these preemption issues under the Labor Management Relations Act. This Contribution argues that the right legal analysis must consider both whether a claim arises independently of the collective bargaining agreement and whether preemption would be appropriate given Congress’ power over interstate commerce and notions of state sovereignty.

Rethinking Qualified Immunity: Making America Accountable Again

by Victoria del Rio-Guarner*

Should the qualified immunity doctrine be revisited to better allow civilians to sue government officials for violations of fundamental rights? In this Contribution, Victoria del Rio-Guarner (’18) discusses how the Supreme Court’s decisions in Harlow v. Fitzgerald and Pearson v. Callahan essentially rendered qualified immunity to Section 1983 claims unqualified. This Contribution argues that qualified immunity doctrine should be recalibrated in order to better fulfill its underlying purpose while not disabling Section 1983 claims.

Buyers Beware: Lower Prices Can be Harmful to Consumers

by Megan Hare*

Does a bundled discount offered by a dominant firm in the market violate Section 2 of the Sherman Antitrust Act? Megan Hare (’18) addresses this question based on her experience at the 2017 Global Antitrust Institute Moot Court Competition. Antitrust doctrine strongly favors aggressive pricing and other discount schemes that encourage competition within a given market. Bundled discounts fall squarely within the procompetitive pricing schemes praised by the Supreme Court’s antitrust doctrine. These rebates compel firms to compete for consumers, thereby allowing consumers to pay lower prices for products than they otherwise would pay without such market competition. This Contribution argues, however, that bundled discounts may be anticompetitive and unlawful under the Sherman Act when unjustifiably used by a dominant firm to gain additional market share or to maintain the firm’s existing market power.

Challenging USACafes Liability of a Fiduciary Entity’s Controllers

by Natalie Noble*

Should a board of directors of a parent company owe fiduciary duties not just to its shareholders, but also to the shareholders of companies involved in limited partnerships with one of its subsidiaries? In this Contribution, Natalie Noble (’18) discusses the implications of In re USACafes, L.P. Litigation, in which the Delaware Chancery Court held that the board of directors of a corporation engaged in a limited partnership owe fiduciary duties to the limited partnership and the limited partners. This Contribution argues that the USACafes doctrine should be abandoned because it discourages freedom of contract, dissuades investors from financing new enterprises, and contravenes bedrock doctrines of corporate law.

Sampling A Song Without a License? Yeah, That’s Still Illegal

by Lee Nisson*

Should musicians be free to use samples from the work of others in their songs without having to pay for them, or should sampled artists have a right to get paid for their work? In this Contribution, Lee Nisson (’18) unpacks the copyright issues around digital sampling of music, exploring the doctrine of de minimis use. Despite the artistic merits of sampling in music, the Contribution argues that all sampling constitutes copyright infringement.

 Search, Seizure, and the Smartphone: Rethinking Privacy Protections in the Digital Age

by Christopher J. Rydberg*

In the digital age, how should privacy concerns constrain police investigations? In this Contribution, Christopher J. Rydberg considers this problem with respect to forcing suspects to unlock smartphones and specificity requirements with respect to smartphone search warrants. Ultimately, the Contribution argues that smartphones are different in kind because of the massive scope of data they contain, and thus historical doctrines of police process will have to change to accommodate the smartphone era.

Growing Pains in EU Antitrust Enforcement

by Jonathan Hettleman*

Can antitrust law be made rigorous in how it analyzes whether a firm is harming competition in a market? Jonathan Hettleman (’18) tackles this question, which was at the center of the 2017 Problem at the Global Antitrust Institute’s Invitational Moot Court Competition in Washington, D.C. Historically, EU law imposed heighten duties on firms considered “dominant,” without looking to the market effects of particular actions. By looking to recent developments in how EU law considers rebate schemes, this Contribution argues that antitrust law should continue to build on the burgeoning effects-based approach to determining whether a firm’s conduct forecloses competition.

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