Law and Economics

Refers to a movement within the academic law and increasingly the legal profession, which seeks to apply “economic theory and econometric methods to examine the formation, structure, processes, and impact of law and legal institutions.” It regards law, or most law, and legal institutions as integral elements within economic systems and considers legal rules and laws as essentially variables within the economy designed to promote certain outcomes, particularly economic efficiency.

Law and economics is regarded in some quarters as a conservative or laissez faire school of law, though this is not correct; left-wing legal scholars also resort to its concept of the application of law as an economic act. Law and economics is particularly relevant to intellectual property, competition law, and international trade. A “free-markets” subset of the law and economics movement is known as the “Chicago School”

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