by Jeff Sovern
I posted on SSRN the results of the survey I previously blogged about, The Content of Consumer Law Classes III. This follows similar surveys in 2008 and 2010 (I bet you can guess what their titles are). The abstract for the new version reads as follows:
This paper reports on a 2018 survey of law professors teaching consumer protection, and follows up on similar 2010 and 2008 surveys, which appeared in Jeff Sovern, The Content of Consumer Law Classes II, 14 J. CONSUMER & COMMERCIAL L. 16 (No. 1 2010), at https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1657624 and Jeff Sovern, The Content of Consumer Law Classes, 12 J. CONSUMER & COMMERCIAL L. 48 (No. 1 2008), at https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1139894, respectively. As reported in previous surveys, professors teaching consumer law report considerable variation in coverage. Professors want to cover relatively current subjects within their courses, such as FinTech, credit invisibles, and mortgage servicing. They also continue to cover topics traditionally explored in consumer law courses, such as common law fraud and the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act. The 2018 survey also found considerable interest in some topics that did not generate any interest in the 2010 survey, including the Consumer Product Safety Commission and student loan servicing.
The survey also asked professors whether they read contracts before agreeing to them and read required disclosures before entering into consumer transactions. Not one professor reported always doing so, while 57% said they rarely or never read contracts and 48% said they rarely or never read required disclosures. It thus appears that not even consumer law professors routinely read consumer contracts and disclosures.