By Megan Backer. Full text here. John Doe was born an orphan.  His life changed immediately when Steven Lofton adopted him.  But John has no assurance that the State will allow him to remain with his family.  Although John calls his foster father “Dad,” that will never be Steven Lofton’s legal title.  John’s foster father is…

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By Peter J. Smith. Full text here. In response to Anti-Federalist complaints that the Constitution was dangerous because it was ambiguous, James Madison and Alexander Hamilton argued that judges would construe the Constitution in the same manner that they construed statutes, and in the process would fix the meaning of ambiguous constitutional provisions.  In other words,…

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By David A. Hoffman. Full text here. How and when do courts determine that corporate disclosures are actionable under the federal securities laws?  The applicable standard is materiality: would a (mythical) reasonable investor have considered a given disclosure important.  Through empirical and statistical testing of approximately 500 cases analyzing the materiality standard, Professor Hoffman concludes…

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By Ross E. Davies. Full text here. The conventional view is that the constitutional mandate that “[t]he judicial power of the United States shall be vested in one supreme Court” precludes legislation creating some sort of back-up Court. This reading is rooted in the idea that the word “one” in “one supreme Court” must be read…

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