LexPredict Goes Open Source, Hopes Others Will Follow ( via ALM LegalTechNews )

From the article – “We are increasingly thinking that there’s room in legal tech for a Red Hat in legal — companies that really focus on development of software by providing wraparound services, but offer their software open source,” Michael J Bommarito II said.   

For more information check out our announcement and the slidedeck (which has more details).

The Development of Structure in the Citation Network of the United States Supreme Court




This is one of our all time best efforts from a scientific perspective (and it is now 7 years old).  We did a rehash of it in our recent paper in the March 31, 2017 edition of Science magazine.

What are some of the key takeaway points?

(1) The Supreme Court’s increasing reliance upon its own decisions over the 1800-1830 window.

(2) The important role of maritime/admiralty law in the early years of the Supreme Court’s citation network. At least with respect to the Supreme Court’s citation network, these maritime decisions are the root of the Supreme Court’s jurisprudence.

(3) The increasing centrality of decisions such as Marbury v. Madison, Martin v. Hunter’s Lessee to the overall network.

The Development of Structure in the SCOTUS Citation Network

The visualization offered above is the largest weakly connected component of the citation network of the United States Supreme Court (1800-1829). Each time slice visualizes the aggregate network as of the year in question.

In our paper entitled Distance Measures for Dynamic Citation Networks, we offer some thoughts on the early SCOTUS citation network. In reviewing the visual above note ….“[T]he Court’s early citation practices indicate a general absence of references to its own prior decisions. While the court did invoke well-established legal concepts, those concepts were often originally developed in alternative domains or jurisdictions. At some level, the lack of self-reference and corresponding reliance upon external sources is not terribly surprising. Namely, there often did not exist a set of established Supreme Court precedents for the class of disputes which reached the high court. Thus, it was necessary for the jurisprudence of the United States Supreme Court, seen through the prism of its case-to-case citation network, to transition through a loading phase. During this loading phase, the largest weakly connected component of the graph generally lacked any meaningful clustering. However, this sparsely connected graph would soon give way, and by the early 1820’s, the largest weakly connected component displayed detectable structure.”

We also explore this network in our 2010 paper — Michael Bommarito, Daniel Martin Katz, Jonathan Zelner & James Fowler, Distance Measures for Dynamic Citation Networks 389 Physica A 4201 (2010) < SSRN > < arXiv >

IE LawX 2017 in Madrid – Presented by IE Law School in Collaboration Stanford CodeX

It was my great pleasure to give the opening Keynote Address at IE LawX 2017.  I would like to extend my thanks to IE Law School, Dean Javier de Cendra and to all of the team who put on a fantastic event on #LegalTech #LegalInnovation #LegalAI! 

Law on the Market? Abnormal Stock Returns and Supreme Court Decision-Making (Version 2.01 on arXiv)


Here is Version 2.01 of the Law on the Market Paper
From the AbstractWhat happens when the Supreme Court of the United States decides a case impacting one or more publicly-traded firms? While many have observed anecdotal evidence linking decisions or oral arguments to abnormal stock returns, few have rigorously or systematically investigated the behavior of equities around Supreme Court actions. In this research, we present the first comprehensive, longitudinal study on the topic, spanning over 15 years and hundreds of cases and firms. Using both intra- and interday data around decisions and oral arguments, we evaluate the frequency and magnitude of statistically-significant abnormal return events after Supreme Court action. On a per-term basis, we find 5.3 cases and 7.8 stocks that exhibit abnormal returns after decision. In total, across the cases we examined, we find 79 out of the 211 cases (37%) exhibit an average abnormal return of 4.4% over a two-session window with an average |t|-statistic of 2.9. Finally, we observe that abnormal returns following Supreme Court decisions materialize over the span of hours and days, not minutes, yielding strong implications for market efficiency in this context. While we cannot causally separate substantive legal impact from mere revision of beliefs, we do find strong evidence that there is indeed a “law on the market” effect as measured by the frequency of abnormal return events, and that these abnormal returns are not immediately incorporated into prices.  

Virginia Decoded – The Code of Virginia for Humans {49 States to Go}

Virginia Decoded is a private, non-governmental, non-partisan implemenation of The State Decoded, an open source project that provides a platform to display state-level legal information in a friendly, accessible, modern fashion. Virginia is the first state to deploy the software.

Virginia Decoded is currently in beta, which is to say that the site is under active development, with known shortcomings, but it has reached a point where it would benefit from being used by the general public (who one hopes will likewise benefit from it.) While every effort is made to ensure that the data provided on Virginia Decoded is accurate and up-to-date, it would be gravely unwise to rely on it for any matter of importance while it is in this beta testing phase.

Many more features are under development, including improvements to search, calculations of the importance of given sections of the code, inclusion of attorney generals’ opinions, Supreme Court of Virginia rulings, extensive explanatory text, social media integration, significant navigation enhancements, a vastly expanded built-in glossary of legal terms, Code download options, scholarly article citations, and much more.”

{HT: Legal Informatics Blog}