Download this Paper Open PDF in Browser

Economic Analysis in Judicial Decision Making - An Assessment Based on Judge Posner's Tax Decisions

67 Pages Posted: 12 May 2005  

Adam Chodorow

Arizona State University (ASU) - Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law

Abstract

In recent years, many of the most vocal proponents of law and economics have been appointed to the bench, including Richard Posner, Guido Calabresi, and Frank Easterbrook. They have been strong advocates of the judicial use of economic analysis as a tool to help decide cases. This paper explores the ways in which Judge Posner has used economic analysis in his tax decisions, with the goal of identifying the ways in which he has used such analysis and then assessing its effectiveness.

I focus on Judge Posner's tax jurisprudence for three reasons. First, he is a leading proponent of the law and economics approach. Second, he has authored over 60 opinions in tax cases. Finally, few question the appropriateness of applying economic reasoning to tax questions. Accordingly, these cases provide a rich and substantial body of material with which to work.

In highlighting and evaluating the ways in which Judge Posner has used economic analysis to decide tax cases, I hope to provide insights and guidance on the strengths and limitations of this approach to others who may be urged or tempted to follow suit.

Keywords: Law and economics, tax

JEL Classification: K34, K40, K00, K10

Suggested Citation

Chodorow, Adam, Economic Analysis in Judicial Decision Making - An Assessment Based on Judge Posner's Tax Decisions. Virginia Tax Review, Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=716981

Adam Chodorow (Contact Author)

Arizona State University (ASU) - Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law ( email )

Box 877906
Tempe, AZ 85287-7906
United States

Paper statistics

Downloads
397
Rank
61,145
Abstract Views
2,702