Health Care Fraud Means Never Having to Say You’re Sorry
June 01, 2021 | 96 Wash. L. Rev. 371
Jacob T. Elberg
Abstract: For decades, the Department of Justice (DOJ) has issued a steady flood of press releases announcing False Claims Act (FCA) settlements against health care entities and extolling the purportedly sharp message sent to the industry through these settlements about the consequences of engaging in wrongdoing. The FCA is the primary mechanism for government enforcement against health care entities engaged in wrongdoing, and it is expected to be DOJ’s key tool for addressing fraud arising out of government programs in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. DOJ has pointed to three key goals of its enforcement efforts (deterrence, incentivizing cooperation, and building a culture of compliance in the health care industry). However, careful examination of the settlements touted in those DOJ press releases calls into question whether DOJ’s settlement practices are conveying the message DOJ seeks to impart or having the impact it hopes to achieve.
|Jacob T. Elberg||96 Wash. L. Rev. 371|
Beyond “Children Are Different”: The Revolution in Juvenile Intake and Sentencing
June 01, 2021 | 96 Wash. L. Rev. 425
Abstract: For more than 120 years, juvenile justice law has not substantively defined the core questions in most delinquency cases—when should the state prosecute children rather than divert them from the court system (the intake decision), and what should the state do with children once they are convicted (the sentencing decision)? Instead, the law has granted certain legal actors wide discretion over these decisions, namely prosecutors at intake and judges at sentencing. This Article identifies and analyzes an essential reform trend changing that reality: legislation, enacted in at least eight states in the 2010s, to limit when children can be prosecuted rather than diverted, and when and for how long they may be incarcerated or kept on probation based on the specific offense alleged or adjudicated.
|Josh Gupta-Kagan||96 Wash. L. Rev. 425|
Talking Back in Court
June 01, 2021 | 96 Wash. L. Rev. 493
M. Eve Hanan
Abstract: People charged with crimes often speak directly to the judge presiding over their case. Yet, what can be seen in courtrooms across the U.S. is that defendants rarely “talk back” in court, meaning that they rarely challenge authority’s view of the law, the crime, the defendant, the court’s procedure, or the fairness of the proposed sentence.
|M. Eve Hanan||96 Wash. L. Rev. 493|
June 01, 2021 | 96 Wash. L. Rev. 561
David Horton & Reid Kress Weisbord
Abstract: The civil justice system has long struggled to resolve disputes over end-of-life transfers. The two most common grounds for challenging the validity of a gift, will, or trust—mental incapacity and undue influence—are vague, hinge on the state of mind of a dead person, and allow factfinders to substitute their own norms and preferences for the donor’s intent. In addition, the slayer doctrine—which prohibits killers from inheriting from their victims—has generated decades of constitutional challenges.
|David Horton & Reid Kress Weisbord||96 Wash. L. Rev. 561|
June 01, 2021 | 96 Wash. L. Rev. 613
Abstract: The American jury system holds the promise of bringing commonsense ideas about justice to the enforcement of the law. But its democratizing effect cannot be realized if a segment of the population faces systematic exclusion based on income or wealth. The problem of unequal access to jury service based on socio-economic disparities is a longstanding yet under-studied problem—and one which the uneven fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic only exacerbated. Like race- and sex-based jury discrimination during the peremptory challenge phase of jury selection, the routine dismissal of citizens who face economic hardship excludes not only people but also the diversity of ideas, experiences, and frames of interpretation that characterize the American population. By failing to make sure that people who are poor can serve, we impoverish our shared understanding of doing justice.
|Anna Offit||96 Wash. L. Rev. 613|
Bully No More: Why Trademark Owners Engage in Trademark Overreach and How to Prevent It
June 01, 2021 | 96 Wash. L. Rev. 667
Abstract: At its core, trademark law exists as a tool for consumer protection. Thus, trademark owners use policing and enforcement to maintain a trademark’s goodwill, which in turn protects consumers from confusion. But policing and enforcement can lead to trademark overreach and bullying—which undermine the goal of trademark law. This Comment explains that trademark owners are incentivized to engage in aggressive enforcement tactics because courts weigh enforcement efforts in favor of trademark strength. And strong trademarks receive strong protection because such marks are more likely to succeed in trademark infringement litigation. To curb trademark bullying and realign trademark law with its consumer protection purpose, this Comment argues that courts assessing trademark strength should focus on evidence of marketing strategies and consumer perception rather than trademark enforcement.View Article ×
|Quynh La||96 Wash. L. Rev. 667|
How Far Will Fara Go? The Foreign Agents Registration Act and the Criminalization of Global Human Rights Advocacy
June 01, 2021 | 96 Wash. L. Rev. 695
Abstract: The Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) was enacted and enforced during World War II to protect the American public from foreign propaganda, especially from the Nazi party. Following the war, FARA was scarcely used for over half a century. But in the past five years, there has been a significant uptick in FARA enforcement, particularly against major political personalities. The revival of FARA has led many legislators and scholars to advocate for expansions of FARA’s scope and enforcement mechanisms in the name of national security. But most have failed to acknowledge the risk and likelihood of politicized enforcement. The United States government is positioned to use FARA to harass organizations critical of the United States—in particular, human rights organizations (HROs) that take politically unpopular positions. The forced association of FARA’s registration requirements could jeopardize HROs’ ability to engage in advocacy by fostering public distrust and social stigma. Accordingly, politicized FARA enforcement against such organizations violates the First Amendment. This Comment advises human rights organizations that have been subject to a politicized FARA enforcement action on how to best attack it and urges Congress to amend FARA to protect these groups and their interests.View Article ×
|Monica Romero||96 Wash. L. Rev. 695|
Water Banks in Washington State: A Tool for Climate Resilience
June 01, 2021 | 96 Wash. L. Rev. 729
Jennifer J. Seely
Abstract: Water banks—a tool for exchanging senior water rights and offsetting new ones—can address multiple problems in contemporary water law. In the era of climate change, water banks enable needed flexibility and resilience in water allocation. As growing cities require new water rights, water banks can repurpose old water for new uses. These advantages should lead the Washington State Legislature to incentivize water banks, but in the 2018 “Hirst fix” it embraced habitat restoration as a false equivalent for water. The Legislature is rightfully concerned about the speculation that some private water banks allow. But overall, water banks enable new and productive uses while maintaining water in streams. Moving forward, Washington should embrace water banks for each unique basin’s needs.View Article ×
|Jennifer J. Seely||96 Wash. L. Rev. 729|
Reimagining Exceptional Events: Regulating Wildfires Through the Clean Air Act
June 01, 2021 | 96 Wash. L. Rev. 765
Abstract: Wildfires are increasing in both frequency and severity due to climate change. Smoke from these fires causes serious health problems. Land managers agree that prescribed burns help mitigate these negative consequences. Prescribed burns are lower-intensity fires that are intentionally ignited and managed for an ecological benefit. They reduce the amount of smoke produced and limit wildfire damage to natural systems and human property.
|Emily Williams||96 Wash. L. Rev. 765|
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