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Independent Courts and Administrative Agencies: An Empirical Analysis of the States

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  • Hanssen, F Andrew

Abstract

This article explores the hypothesis that state administrative agencies spend more time and effort attempting to protect their actions from judicial review in states with more independent appointed courts (as opposed to less independent elected courts). This is because more independent courts are (by definition) less influenced by the political/electoral forces that underlie agency--policymaking--as rational actors, agencies may therefore be expected to recognize the degree of judicial independence and respond to it. Three state agencies subject to substantial judicial review in the 1970s are examined: utility commissions, insurance commissions, and the public education bureaucracy. Controlling for relevant political factors, each is found to have significantly larger staffing for a given regulatory workload in states with more independent appointed courts, consistent with the hypothesis. Copyright 2000 by Oxford University Press.

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  • Hanssen, F Andrew, 2000. "Independent Courts and Administrative Agencies: An Empirical Analysis of the States," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 16(2), pages 534-571, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:jleorg:v:16:y:2000:i:2:p:534-71
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    4. de Neubourg, Chris & Vendrik, Maarten, 1994. "An extended rationality model of social norms in labour supply," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 15(1), pages 93-126, March.
    5. Huck, Steffen, 1998. "Trust, Treason, and Trials: An Example of How the Evolution of Preferences Can Be Driven by Legal Institutions," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 14(1), pages 44-60, April.
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    Cited by:

    1. Timothy Besley & Anne Case, 2003. "Political Institutions and Policy Choices: Evidence from the United States," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, pages 7-73.
    2. Timothy Besley, 2013. "Implementation of Anti-Discrimination Policy: Does Judicial Selection Matter?," American Law and Economics Review, Oxford University Press, vol. 15(1), pages 212-251.
    3. Iaryczower, Matias & Lewis, Garrett & Shum, Matthew, 2013. "To elect or to appoint? Bias, information, and responsiveness of bureaucrats and politicians," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 97(C), pages 230-244.
    4. Siddhartha Bandyopadhyay & Bryan McCannon, 2014. "The effect of the election of prosecutors on criminal trials," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 161(1), pages 141-156, October.
    5. Eric Maskin & Jean Tirole, 2004. "The Politician and the Judge: Accountability in Government," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(4), pages 1034-1054, September.
    6. Alois Stutzer, 2008. "Bureaucratic Rents and Life Satisfaction," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 24(2), pages 476-488, October.
    7. Christian Almer & Timo Goeschl, 2011. "The political economy of the environmental criminal justice system: a production function approach," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 148(3), pages 611-630, September.
    8. SIDDHARTHA BANDYOPADHYAY & BRYAN C. McCANNON, 2015. "Prosecutorial Retention: Signaling by Trial," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 17(2), pages 219-256, April.
    9. Siddhartha Bandyopadhyay & Bryan C McCannon, 2014. "Queuing Up For Justice: Elections and Case Backlogs," Discussion Papers 14-10, Department of Economics, University of Birmingham.
    10. Haitian Lu, Hongbo Pan, Chenying Zhang, . "Political Connectedness and Court Outcomes: Evidence from Chinese Corporate Lawsuits," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 58(4).
    11. Pushkar Maitra & Russell Smyth, 2004. "Judicial Independence, Judicial Promotion and the Enforcement of Legislative Wealth Transfers—An Empirical Study of the New Zealand High Court," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 17(2), pages 209-235, March.
    12. Fleck, Robert K. & Hanssen, F. Andrew, 2010. "Repeated adjustment of delegated powers and the history of eminent domain," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 99-112, June.
    13. James E. Alt & David D. Lassen, 2008. "Political And Judicial Checks On Corruption: Evidence From American State Governments," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 20(1), pages 33-61, March.
    14. Tim Besley & Abigail Payne, 2003. "Judicial accountability and economic policy outcomes: evidence from employment discrimination charges," IFS Working Papers W03/11, Institute for Fiscal Studies.

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