Less Than I Wanted To Know: Why Do Ben-Shahar and Schneider Attack Only 'Mandated' Disclosure?

Jerusalem Review of Legal Studies (2014, Forthcoming)

U of Michigan Law & Econ Research Paper No. 14-012

19 Pages Posted: 6 Jul 2014 Last revised: 30 Sep 2014

See all articles by Margaret Jane Radin

Margaret Jane Radin

University of Toronto - Faculty of Law; University of Michigan Law School

Date Written: May 31, 2014

Abstract

This essay responds to a new book by Omri Ben Shahar and Carl E. Schneider, entitled MORE THAN YOU WANTED TO KNOW: THE FAILURE OF MANDATED DISCLOSURE (Princeton, 2014). The book is an elaborate disclosure of why disclosure fails. It is hard to disagree with the fact that widespread deficits in consumer reading, understanding and decisionmaking undermine the efficacy of disclosures, and the book provides plenty of data to show this. But the authors do not much confront the fact that many mandates for disclosures are a response to what happens when firms are free to design their own fine print. The same consumer decisionmaking deficits the authors here elaborate exist when the disclosure (allegedly contractual) is created by private firms; and firms take advantage of those deficits. If mandated disclosure is abandoned, as the authors recommend, do the authors think recipients of bad boilerplate should just be on their own? The authors did not consider that question as part of their project in this book.

Keywords: disclosure, contracts

Suggested Citation

Radin, Margaret Jane, Less Than I Wanted To Know: Why Do Ben-Shahar and Schneider Attack Only 'Mandated' Disclosure? (May 31, 2014). Jerusalem Review of Legal Studies (2014, Forthcoming); U of Michigan Law & Econ Research Paper No. 14-012. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2462818 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2462818

Margaret Jane Radin (Contact Author)

University of Toronto - Faculty of Law ( email )

78 and 84 Queen's Park
Toronto, Ontario M5S 2C5
Canada

University of Michigan Law School ( email )

625 South State Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1215
United States
505-314-6516 (Phone)

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