Topics Under Study

ULC Study Committees review an assigned area of law in light of defined criteria and recommend whether ULC should proceed with a draft on that subject.   Study Committees typically do not meet in-person, but when appropriate Study Committees hold meetings with those interested in the area that the committee is exploring in order to assist in gauging the need for uniform state legislation in an area, the likely scope of any drafting project, and the potential support for a project.  ABA advisors are appointed to Study Committees when such an appointment appears particularly useful.

Covenants Not to Compete Committee  

The Study Committee on Covenants not to Compete will study the need for and feasibility of a uniform or model law governing covenants not to compete in employment and related contexts.

 

Default Judgments in Debt Collection Cases  

This committee will study the need for and feasibility of state legislation on default judgments in debt collection cases brought by third-party debt collectors and debt buyers. Significant changes in debt collection practices in recent years have resulted in dramatic growth in the industry which, in turn, has placed considerable pressure on court dockets and raised concerns about fairness to debtors. These developments may justify a model or uniform law to regulate the processes and information required before the entry of a default judgment in debt collection cases.

 

Disposition of Human Embryos and Gametes  

This committee will study the need for and feasibility of state legislation governing the disposition of human embryos and gametes at divorce, separation, or death.

 

Event Data Recorders in Cars Committee  

The Study Committee on Event Data Recorders in Cars is studying the need for and feasibility of uniform or model state legislation concerning event data recorders and all generated vehicle data. The committee has considered the issues raised by the installation of data recorders in vehicles, including privacy issues; disclosure requirements; ownership of data; use of EDR data as evidence; access to and data retrieval for use by law enforcement or others; use required by or retrieved by insurers; and use of EDR data as evidence in legal proceedings.

 

Fines and Fees Committee  

This committee will consider the need for and feasibility of a uniform or model law addressing the impact of fines and fees on people of limited means. The impact of fines and fees on those with means can be a mere inconvenience, but for the poor and working poor who are unable to pay, those same fines and fees can be devastating, resulting in thousands of dollars of debt and functioning as a poverty trap. The committee will consider three major areas which might be addressed in a uniform or model law: (1) suspension of driving privileges because of unpaid fines and fees even when unrelated to public safety; (2) fines and fees imposed on juveniles and their parents in the juvenile justice system; and (3) fines and fees imposed without consideration of ability to pay because of adult criminal offenses.

 

Jury Selection and Service Committee  

This committee will study the need for and feasibility of updating the Uniform Jury Selection and Service Act, originally promulgated in 1970 and adopted in eight states

 

Special Deposits Committee  

This committee will consider the need for and feasibility of state legislation on special deposits. A special deposit resembles a prefunded letter of credit with three parties: a funder, a bank, and a beneficiary. The bank pays the beneficiary if a specified condition occurs. If the specified condition does not occur, the special deposit reverts to the funder. A special deposit is not assignable and is not subject to legal process. The law of special deposits has not developed much since the 1930s, and a uniform or model act on special deposits could provide greater clarity in this area.

 

Telehealth  

This committee will study the need for and feasibility of state legislation on telehealth, focusing on the doctor-patient relationship through telemedicine, the corporate practice of telemedicine, and broader emerging issues of telehealth including the use of mobile devices and artificial intelligence.

 

Third-Party Funding of Litigation  

This committee will study the need for and feasibility of a uniform or model law governing third-party funding of litigation and arbitration. Third-party funding, in its traditional form, is a non-recourse loan from the funder to a party in arbitration or litigation in return for a contingent right to receive a portion of the potential proceeds of a settlement, judgment, award, or verdict obtained for a legal claim. Within the last decade, the picture has become more complex. New forms of funding include portfolio financing of large numbers of cases at a law firm or corporation, equity investment products that finance litigation in exchange for shares in a company, and crowdfunding. Current state legislation on third-party funding varies in terms of the issues addressed and the policy solutions provided.

 

Uniform Commercial Code and Emerging Technologies  

The Joint Study Committee on the Uniform Commercial Code and Emerging Technologies, with members from the American Law Institute and the Uniform Law Commission, will review the Official Text of the Uniform Commercial Code with a view to recommending or possibly drafting amendments or revisions to the Uniform Commercial Code to accommodate emerged and emerging technological developments. The committee will consider, among other technologies, distributed ledger technology and virtual currency and other digital assets.