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The Psychology of Property Law$
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Stephanie M. Stern and Daphna Lewinsohn-Zamir

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781479835683

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479835683.001.0001

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Redistribution through Property Law

Redistribution through Property Law

(p.115) 4 Redistribution through Property Law
The Psychology of Property Law

Stephanie M. Stern

Daphna Lewinsohn-Zamir

NYU Press

This chapter explains the importance of property for promoting equality in society and enhancing people's well-being. It then addresses the major legal debate regarding the method that should be used to redistribute welfare. There is much controversy in the literature as to whether redistribution should be attained solely through taxes and transfer payments (such as progressive taxation and cash assistance to needy families) or also via substantive rules of private law, including property law. The chapter shows how various behavioral phenomena support the use of private law rules alongside taxes and monetary transfers, with applications to two central property law issues: the choice of a family property system and compensation for takings of land.

Keywords:   Redistribution, Taxes, family property, takings, identifiability effect, overoptimism, source dependence

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