Building on Professor Andrew Taslitz’s work, this article explores how Fair Price Theory can help us analyze the fairness of guilty pleas. In Judging Jena’s D.A., Professor Taslitz used Fair Price Theory to explore how prosecutors could strive to achieve fairness and reduce the perception of racial stigma. He used Fair Price Theory to propose a system of prosecutorial ethics that takes into account racial stigma. This article considers how Fair Price Theory challenges courts to analyze guilty pleas differently, by focusing on price without relying on the agency of prosecutors. Under current doctrine, a court examines whether the defendant’s decision to plead guilty is voluntary, informed, and factually supported. Courts do not assess whether the defendant is getting a fair deal or fair price. Fair Price Theory could help define and assess what makes a deal (or price) fair. And that analysis, with its related questions, challenges the status quo by making price and fairness a central inquiry.
58 How. L. J. 437 (2015).
Traum, Anne R., "Fairly Pricing Guilty Pleas" (2015). Scholarly Works. Paper 955.