nep-law New Economics Papers
on Law and Economics
Issue of 2020‒09‒14
fifteen papers chosen by
Eve-Angeline Lambert, Université de Lorraine

  1. Surge in Dark Web Crimes, the Indian Legal Scenario and International Cooperation as the Way Forward By Shubha Ojha
  2. The Franchise, Policing, and Race: Evidence from Arrests Data and the Voting Rights Act By Giovanni Facchini; Brian G. Knight; Cecilia Testa
  3. Local Access to Mental Healthcare and Crime By Monica Deza; Johanna Catherine Maclean; Keisha T. Solomon
  5. Efforts in Harmonizing Contract Law: Some Considerations Regarding European Sale of Goods By Bogdan Radu
  6. Last and Furious: Relative Position and School Violence By Comi, Simona; Origo, Federica; Pagani, Laura; Tonello, Marco
  7. The Need of Introducing One or More Temporary Criminal Laws During the State of Emergency or Alert By Bogdan David
  8. Connection between Crime and Criminality − Criminological Perspective By Tiberiu Viorel Popescu
  9. Competition Laws, Norms and Corporate Social Responsibility By Wenzhi Ding; Ross Levine; Chen Lin; Wensi Xie
  10. Universal Credit and Crime By D'Este, Rocco; Harvey, Alex
  11. Discretionary Exemptions from Environmental Regulation: Flexibility for Good or for Ill By Dietrich Earnhart; Sarah Jacobson; Yusuke Kuwayama; Richard T. Woodward
  12. The Main Rights and Obligations Related to Patents in Romania By Nicolae Popa; Adriana TuluÈ™
  13. Prison Work and Convict Rehabilitation By Zanella, Giulio
  14. The Entitlement to Take Legal Action of Individuals By Valentina Avramescu
  15. Child Sexual Abuse and Presumption of Innocence By Silviu Stefan Petriman

  1. By: Shubha Ojha (National Law University Jodhpur, India)
    Abstract: In today’s technology-driven world, advancements in the internet domain seem to know no bounds. However, while the internet arena has created multiple avenues of development, it has, at the same time, opened up gates for a flurry of illicit activities. Dark web crime has emerged as one such ominous activity that looms over the virtual world and threatens legal systems all across the globe. What started off as the first major internet debacle brought about by the ‘Silk Road’ episode, has now become a source of serious concern for establishing rule of law in the information society. This article delves into the turbid cloud of dark web crimes thriving in the cyber space and the current legal scenario in India to regulate the surge in such malpractices. What stands as a stumbling block before the law enforcement agencies is the transnational element of dark web crimes. While the Indian Penal Code and other legislations comprise provisions related to both territorial and extra-territorial jurisdiction, the extra-territorial jurisdiction is such that it leaves a lot of ambiguity in terms of applicability of Indian laws to cyber offences that may be committed by foreign nationals overseas but the effects of which are felt in India. The author, through the course of this article, brings to light loopholes in the criminal and cyber laws of India, proposes international cooperation as the need of the hour, and analyses if the Budapest Convention on Cybercrimes provides an efficacious solution in this context.
    Keywords: dark web crime, Silk Road, cyberspace, extra-territorial jurisdiction, Budapest Convention
    Date: 2020–06
  2. By: Giovanni Facchini; Brian G. Knight; Cecilia Testa
    Abstract: This paper investigates the relationship between the franchise and law enforcement practices using evidence from the Voting Rights Act (VRA) of 1965. We find that, following the VRA, black arrest rates fell in counties that were both covered by the legislation and had a large number of newly enfranchised black voters. We uncover no corresponding patterns for white arrest rates. The reduction in black arrest rates is driven by less serious offenses, for which police might have more enforcement discretion. Importantly, our results are driven by arrests carried out by sheriffs - who are always elected. While there are no corresponding changes for municipal police chiefs in aggregate, we do find similar patterns in covered counties with elected rather than appointed chiefs. We also show that our findings cannot be rationalized by alternative explanations, such as differences in collective bargaining, changes in the underlying propensity to commit crimes, responses to changes in policing practices, and changes in the suppression of civil right protests. Taken together, these results document that voting rights, when combined with elected, rather than appointed, chief law enforcement officers, can lead to improved treatment of minority groups by police.
    JEL: D7 J15
    Date: 2020–07
  3. By: Monica Deza; Johanna Catherine Maclean; Keisha T. Solomon
    Abstract: We estimate the effect of local access to office-based mental healthcare on crime. We leverage variation in the number of mental healthcare offices within a county over the period 1999 to 2014 in a two-way fixed-effects model. We find that increases in the number of mental healthcare offices modestly reduce crime. In particular, ten additional offices in a county reduces crime by 1.7 crimes per 10,000 residents. These findings suggest an unintended benefit from expanding the office-based mental healthcare workforce: reductions in crime.
    JEL: I1 I11 K42
    Date: 2020–07
  4. By: Anatoliy Kostruba (Vasyl Stefanyk Precarpathian National University); Valentyna Vasylyeva
    Abstract: The termination of right, which is based on the implementation of legal facts, is determined by the fact that it will facilitate the realization of processes of changing the subject composition of a legal entity. As a result of this, the definition of structural legislation regarding the quality of the legal structure for the implementation of the termination of right becomes relevant. The relevance of the study is determined by the fact that termination of right is defined as the most problematic area of implementation in national legislation. This becomes a rather complicated legal phenomenon when it comes to block formations. The novelty of the study is determined by the fact that, for the first time in the literature, aspects of the development of the system of termination of right in an integrated and furthermore national system of law are shown on the example of the European Union. The authors determine the need for the formation of the indicated topics as exemplified by the analysis of the main interstate and fundamental documents that form the common legal field in integration and block associations. The study gains practical significance in the event that it becomes necessary to distinguish the interaction between counterparties outside the integration association and the domestic legal field. This aspect should also be considered in globalization processes. The analysis also has its application for the socioeconomic development of territories.
    Keywords: legal structure,treaty,law,development,subjectivity,Legal facts enforcement,Legal regilation,Legal relationship
    Date: 2020–08–24
  5. By: Bogdan Radu (Dimitrie Cantemir Christian University, Bucharest, Romania)
    Abstract: The European Union has taken great strides in harmonizing the sale of goods contracts, however the Common European Sales Law is yet to be approved. In 2019, the European Parliament and the Council adopted Directive 2019/771 of 20 May 2019 on certain aspects concerning contracts for the sale of goods. Some of the main benefits of the directive are: a minimum warranty period of two years from the date on which the consumer receives the good in question and a period of one year for the burden of proof reversed in favor of the consumer, and the possibility for the countries to set longer deadlines than these to maintain their current level of consumer protection. This article is set out to present the steps made towards a unified theory of sales law and some issues that can appear when concepts from different legal systems are adopted into one legal framework.
    Keywords: contract, law, sale, goods, EU, Common European Sales Law, international
    Date: 2020–06
  6. By: Comi, Simona (University of Milan Bicocca); Origo, Federica (University of Bergamo); Pagani, Laura (University of Milan Bicocca); Tonello, Marco (Catholic University Milan)
    Abstract: This paper examines the effect of a high school student's relative position in the class achievement distribution on school violence. We identify this effect by exploiting idiosyncratic differences in the distribution of earlier academic achievement across classes. Such differences generate quasi-random variation in rank for students with the same initial achievement. We consider distinct types of school violence, namely, verbal, relational and physical violence. We find that rank has a negative effect on both the probability and frequency of perpetrating school violence for all the specific types of violence considered. The effect size is economically significant, especially in the case of physical violence. We find that rank is less or not effective in reducing physical violence for low-background students, migrants, in lower-quality schools and in high-crime areas, consistent with the lower perceived opportunity costs associated with misbehavior for disadvantaged students in low quality schools and located in violent local contexts.
    Keywords: school rank, school violence
    JEL: I21 I24 K40
    Date: 2020–07
  7. By: Bogdan David (Dimitrie Cantemir Christian University of Bucharest, Romania)
    Abstract: To ensure the stability of the social order during a special period generated by emergency situations such as various natural disasters, pandemics or states of war, the decision-makers of each state facing such situations of general crisis, should adopt attitudes embodied in special temporary laws to provide security to their citizens, knowing that, oftentimes, potential offenders take advantage of such situations, considering that the vigilance of the prosecution bodies is greatly diminished, their attention focusing on the situations that generated the state of emergency so, consequently the commission of crimes is easier and difficult to ascertain and follow. In the present study, we propose the introduction of one or more temporary criminal laws to ensure, on one hand, the conversion of virtual judicial efficiency into a real efficiency based on criminal norms, and on the other hand, to create a preventive factor against the commission of crimes by supplementing the exigency of the criminal treatment towards the potential criminals.
    Keywords: temporary criminal law, prevention, crime, delinquency, social stability
    Date: 2020–06
  8. By: Tiberiu Viorel Popescu (Romanian Academy, Center for Studies and Research in Agrosilvic Biodiversity Acad. David Davidescu - associate researcher, Bucharest, Romania)
    Abstract: In the current context of globalization, we intend, in the present study to approach from a criminological perspective some specific concepts. We can find in various written articles, some coming from institutions with competences in investigating and sanctioning the criminal phenomenon, the inappropriate use of concepts such as organized crime/organized criminality, international crime/transnational crime, mondialization of crime/globalization of crime. The most commonly misused concept is that of organized crime instead of organized criminality (referring to English organized crime), which is most likely based on a translation error from English to Romanian. These findings led us to undertake a review of such concepts in order to provide clarification. A thorough conceptual delimitation primarily supports the choice of a correct methodological framework for the analysis of particular crime phenomenon or crime as a social phenomenon and can help us choose the most appropriate means of combating it.
    Keywords: law, criminology, crime, criminality, organized crime, transnational crime
    Date: 2020–06
  9. By: Wenzhi Ding; Ross Levine; Chen Lin; Wensi Xie
    Abstract: Theory offers differing perspectives and predictions about the impact of product market competition on corporate social responsibility (CSR). Using firm-level data on CSR from 2002 through 2015 and panel data on competition laws in 48 countries, we discover that intensifying competition induces firms to increase CSR activities. Analyses indicate that (a) intensifying competition spurs firms to invest more in CSR as a strategy for strengthening relationships with workers, suppliers, and customers and (b) the competition-CSR effect is stronger in economies where social norms prioritize CSR-type activities, e.g., treating others fairly, satisfying implicit agreements, protecting the environment, etc.
    JEL: K21 L4 M14 Z13
    Date: 2020–07
  10. By: D'Este, Rocco (University of Sussex); Harvey, Alex (University of Sussex)
    Abstract: We evaluate the criminogenic effects of Universal Credit (UC), a monumental welfare reform designed to radically change the social security payment system in the United Kingdom. We exploit the UC rollout across constituencies using monthly data from 2010 to 2019 for England and Wales. We find UC has caused around 45,000 burglaries, with criminogenic effects lasting until the end of the sample period and expected to grow considerably by the time UC is fully rolled out when 6.5 million more individuals will use the system. The analysis suggests the worsening of benefit recipients' financial conditions as the key mechanism.
    Keywords: universal credit, benefits, welfare system, crime
    JEL: K14 K42
    Date: 2020–07
  11. By: Dietrich Earnhart (University of Kansas); Sarah Jacobson (Williams College); Yusuke Kuwayama (Resources for the Future); Richard T. Woodward (Department of Agricultural Economics, Texas A&M University)
    Abstract: We model firm and regulator behavior to examine theoretically the use and consequences of discretionary exemptions (also known as variances, waivers, or exceptions) in environmental regulation. Many laws, such as the Clean Water Act, impose limits on harmful activities yet include ``safety valve'' provisions giving the regulator discretion to grant full or partial exemptions that provide permanent or temporary relief. This discretion begets flexibility over the law’s de facto stringency. Our model places a profit-maximizing pollution discharger under the purview of a fully informed regulator who imposes discharge limits. We show that when a regulation is otherwise inflexible, an exemption that relaxes the limit for high cost firms can improve social welfare by reducing the costs of achieving a level of environmental quality. We further demonstrate that if abatement technology improves in effectiveness over time, a temporary exemption can increase social welfare by adjusting abatement in response to dynamic conditions. We also show that if the labor market is sticky, exemptions can ``create jobs.'' If a regulator is driven by an unequally weighted social welfare function, she can use exemptions to meet redistributive ends. However, these beneficial impacts of exemptions rely on a fully informed and benevolent regulator; otherwise, the discretionary nature of exemptions leaves them open to abuse. A regulator who is captured by industry, focused only on her jurisdiction, or answerable to a set of elites can abuse exemptions in ways that reduce social welfare, such as allowing inefficiently high pollution or inducing a cost-ineffective pattern of abatement.
    Keywords: Variance, exemption, regulation, flexibility, discretion, welfare
    JEL: D21 D62 K32 Q52 Q53 Q58
    Date: 2020–04
  12. By: Nicolae Popa (Institute of Development, Education and Academic Excellence, Romania,); Adriana TuluÈ™ (Titu Maiorescu University, Bucharest, Romania)
    Abstract: In the context of globalization of trade industrial property has become a key factor of the world economy and an indispensable attribute of the market economy, it being a key topic in both developed and developing countries. In the field of industrial property, as a branch of intellectual property, Romanian legislation establishes a number of rights and obligations regarding patents. In this paper we propose to present aspects related to the rights and obligations that the holder of a patent must fulfill as provided by Romanian legislation, mainly the Law 64/1991, but also the situations that constitute as exceptions to the violation of these rights. We have also highlighted the updated and interpreted content of the text of the law and have exemplified various situations in national case law to highlight the special importance to be given to regulations concerning industrial property rights, which are a topic of great importance and actuality in Romania in areas such as scientific research, innovation, industrial policies, technological transfer, biotechnology, public health, education, biodiversity, food security and more.
    Keywords: : intellectual property, industrial property, patent, invention, copyright, legal protection of inventions
    Date: 2020–06
  13. By: Zanella, Giulio (University of Adelaide)
    Abstract: I study the causal pathways that link prison work programs to convict rehabilitation, leveraging administrative data from Italy and combining quasi-experimental and structural econometric methods to achieve both a credible identification and the isolation of mechanisms. Due to competing channels, I find that work in unskilled prison jobs impacts convicts on longer or shorter terms differently. Increasing work time by 16 hours per month reduces by between 3 and 10 percentage points the reincarceration rate, within three years of release, of convicts on terms longer than six months – because prison work counteracts the rapid depreciation of earning ability experienced by these convicts. For those on shorter terms, the analogous increase leads instead to a re-incarceration rate that is up to 9 percentage points higher, because of a liquidity effect that weakens deterrence.
    Keywords: prison labor, prisoner rehabilitation, crime, recidivism, re-incarceration
    JEL: K42 J47
    Date: 2020–07
  14. By: Valentina Avramescu (Dimitrie Cantemir Christian University of Bucharest, Romania,)
    Abstract: This paper addresses the topic of the entitlement to take legal action of individuals. As it is well-known, persons are called subjects of civil law, and between them a legal relationship occurs. The quality of this subject of law is expressed by what is called the civil legal standing and which includes: the entitlement to take legal action and the legal competence. In this paper, we talk about the notion of entitlement to take legal action of individuals - a component of civil standing. This quality of the subject of law presents all the rights that an individual can acquire. We also present the legal characteristics of the entitlement to take legal action, aspects related to the occurrence of the entitlement to take legal action, the exception of acquiring the entitlement to take legal action from the date of conception, as well as the constitutive elements of the entitlement to take legal action of individuals and in the end we presented the ways of termination of the entitlement to take legal action of the individual.
    Keywords: entitlement to take legal action, civil standing, individual, civil rights, limitation of the civil standing
    Date: 2020–06
  15. By: Silviu Stefan Petriman (Bucharest Bar, Bucharest, Romania)
    Abstract: Child abuse, especially sexual abuse, is regulated by both national and European rules, just as the presumption of innocence is regulated. Minors, being the weak part, need support from the authorities, as the European Court of Human Rights has recommended in cases involving minors, cases that we will refer to throughout this article. On the other hand, the presumption of innocence must not be disregarded, precisely because the latter is a guarantee against arbitrariness. The difficulty of reconciling these notions is also given by the fact that in certain situations of abuse there is no direct evidence to scientifically establish such a fact. Până la rămânerea definitivă a hotărârii judecătoreÈ™ti, prin care este stabilită vinovăția sau nevinovăția inculpatului, legea prevede È™i posibilitatea luării unor măsuri preventive, care pot fi restrictive sau privative de libertate. Another aspect is represented by the psychology of the minor in his reports, taking into account his age, the education received, especially sex education, given the access to technology existing today among minors, as well as the accuracy of statements and last but not least, the degree contamination of statements by suggestibility. During the criminal process, until the final decision of the court is a difficult road, in which the judiciary, lawyers and psychologists have a difficult mission in finding out the truth, to bring to justice the guilty and if there is no guilt to order the acquittal of the innocent.
    Keywords: minor, presumption of innocence, sexual abuse, impartiality, criminal trial, sex education
    Date: 2020–06

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