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Administrative Law

Administrative agencies affect vast areas of life -- from employment to food and drug safety, from the environment to energy markets, and from telecommunications to immigration. But who is in charge of government agencies, and what precisely can those agencies do? These are the major questions that permeate administrative law, which is the body of legal rules and standards regulating how government is administered. Accordingly, this course is concerned with the constitutional rules and political pressures that shape agencies; how agencies interpret statutes, promulgate regulations, and adjudicate disputes; the major statutes affecting how agencies work, particularly the Administrative Procedure Act; how the leadership of the executive branch tries to control agency actions; how agencies make judgments about the costs and benefits of regulatory policies; and how courts review agency action. The course will cover these topics through cases and examples drawn from a variety of areas, including, separation of powers, the constitutional law of due process, environmental policy, health and safety, and national security. A major theme cutting across these topics is how the law seeks, yet often fails to resolve, tensions between political accountability, scientific and technical rationality, and adjudicatory fairness. Elements used in grading: Class Participation (including participation in exercises and simulations in class), Attendance, Final Exam (in-school: four hour, essay, open book).

2014-2015 Winter
Notes: This class section has been cancelled!

Instructors for this course (Past and Present)

Mariano-Florentino Cuéllar
David Freeman Engstrom
Daniel E. Ho
M. Elizabeth Magill