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Bridget Crawford | PACE UNIVERSITY

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KYW featured Haub Law Professor Bridget Crawford in "How Carrie Burnham Kilgore set the bar for voting rights in Pennsylvania"

08/06/2020

KYW featured Haub Law Professor Bridget Crawford in "How Carrie Burnham Kilgore set the bar for voting rights in Pennsylvania"

“In the same year that she applied to law school, she also asserted her right to vote,” explained Bridget Crawford, professor at the Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University. “She tried to vote in Philadelphia,” in city and county elections. 

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Associated Press featured Haub tax law professor Bridget Crawford in "Trump tax ruling a new front in defamation suits against him"

07/20/2020

Associated Press featured Haub tax law professor Bridget Crawford in "Trump tax ruling a new front in defamation suits against him"

Bridget Crawford, a Pace University tax law professor who followed the Supreme Court case closely, thinks people interested in suing a president in state court “have reason to take heart.”

“I don’t think it’s a ‘green light -- go!’ for all plaintiff’s claims,” she said, “but nor do I think there is a red light on, either.”

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News 12 featured Elisbeth Haub School of Law Professor Bridget Crawford in "Court rulings keep Trump's financial records private for now"

07/10/2020

News 12 featured Elisbeth Haub School of Law Professor Bridget Crawford in "Court rulings keep Trump's financial records private for now"

Pace Law School Professor Bridget Crawford believes the rulings were short-term victories for the president, but could bring long-term dangers. "In the immediate term, no one is going to get their hands on President Trump's tax returns anytime soon. However in the long run, the Supreme Court has stated the separation of powers is alive and well in this country," she says.

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"Law360" featured Bridget Crawford, professor of taxation at the Pace University Elisabeth Haub School of Law, in "3 Ways Trump Will Save 'Bigly' With Florida Move"

11/05/2019

"Law360" featured Bridget Crawford, professor of taxation at the Pace University Elisabeth Haub School of Law, in "3 Ways Trump Will Save 'Bigly' With Florida Move"

No Estate Tax or Inheritance Tax

New York’s estate tax goes up to 16% for taxable estates worth more than $10 million. It is likely the president fits into this category. In Florida, which has no estate tax, Trump’s heirs will owe the state nothing upon his death.

“If President Trump’s estate is large enough to be subject to the estate tax, his change of domicile just saved his family a whole lot of money,” said Bridget Crawford, professor of taxation at the Pace University Elisabeth Haub School of Law.

Depending on the size of Trump’s estate, it would still have to pay a 40% tax to the federal government, which is owed tax on all estates valued at least $11.4 million. However, there, too, Trump’s beneficiaries are protected, since the estate and not the beneficiaries are liable for the tax.

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"The Nation" featured Pace University professors Emily Gold Waldman and Bridget Crawford in "Is the tax on tampons unconstitutional?"

10/01/2019

"The Nation" featured Pace University professors Emily Gold Waldman and Bridget Crawford in "Is the tax on tampons unconstitutional?"

...Through panels and discussion, Period Equity hoped to build upon a framework outlined in a 2018 law review by Emily Gold Waldman and Bridget Crawford, professors at Pace University. Since tampons and pads can be seen as a “unique proxy for the female sex,” Waldman, a constitutional law scholar, and Crawford, a tax attorney, argued the tax violated the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment. “It was a sort of interesting intellectual puzzle in a way, because it’s not like right on its face [the tax] says women, but you’re talking about a product that is obviously inextricably linked to female biology,” Waldman said. She noted that menstrual products are often referred to as “feminine hygiene products.”

Period Equity and the local attorneys partnering with the group are aware that challenging the tax will require going against decades of established jurisprudence. In 1979, the Supreme Court ruled in Personnel Administrator of Massachusetts v. Feeney that a law giving hiring preference to veterans in the state — 98 percent of which were men at the time — over non-veterans wasn’t unconstitutional because it served a “legitimate and worthy” purpose. And while litigants in New York and Florida both voluntarily dismissed their cases once the legislature repealed the tax, the only case to have a hearing, California’s, was ultimately dismissed by the judge in 2018.

Still, Period Equity and its partners are optimistic. They point out that United States v. Windsor, which paved the way for the Supreme Court to legalize same-sex marriage, was actually a tax case. “Tax is this amazing lens that really reduces discrimination to dollars and cents,” Crawford said. 

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"Law.com" featured Elisabeth Haub School of Law professor Bridget Crawford in "To Tweet, or Not to Tweet. That Is the Question (for Law Professors)"

09/19/2019

"Law.com" featured Elisabeth Haub School of Law professor Bridget Crawford in "To Tweet, or Not to Tweet. That Is the Question (for Law Professors)"

Law professors are trained to share their thoughts in lengthy, exhaustively footnoted journal articles. So it makes sense that the legal academy as a whole was initially reluctant to embrace Twitter, a medium that forces users to be concise and where the conversation can be bare-knuckled.

But it seems law professors are finally coming around to Twitter. A recent census of law professors on Twitter found that at least 1,310 are on the platform, which represents an increase of more than 500% from 2012, when just several hundred were tweeting.

More law professors have jumped on the Twitter bandwagon as they have watched early adopters use the platform in a variety of ways: From promoting their own work or offering commentary on the news of the day to connecting with others in their field or even engaging with the general public, said Bridget Crawford, a professor at Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University, who compiled the data.

“For me, I often use Twitter to comment about things that are in the news,” Crawford said. “Jeffrey Epstein, for example. When he committed suicide and it was revealed that he had executed his will two days before, I was tweeting a lot about that. And that’s not something I would have written about in a scholarly article. I tend to use it for things my students would be interested in, or things that we covered in class.”

Crawford said she has even experimented with using Twitter in the classroom, asking students to live tweet questions during her lecture, but deemed the test a failure.

Crawford cautioned that the Twitter census, published on The Faculty Lounge blog, isn’t perfect. The data is self-reported by professors on Twitter, thus it likely undercounts the accounts of actual of law professors using the platform. (It only counts full-time law professors.) And she did not independently verify the data.

While imperfect, the numbers point to a steady adoption over time. Crawford tracked 204 law professors on Twitter in 2012, which more than doubled to 550 in 2015. In 2018, 1,105 reported to Crawford that they were on Twitter, with the latest figure coming in at 1,310. Crawford said she began the census out of curiosity over how many colleagues were tweeting.

To be sure, the number of law professors on Twitter is still a relatively small slice of the legal professoriate as a whole. According to the Association of American Law Schools, there were 9,666 full-time law professors in the U.S. in 2018. That means just 11% reported using Twitter this year. (That percentage takes into account that 276 of the professors appearing on the Twitter census are based outside of the U.S.)

And there is a healthy debate among legal academics over whether Twitter is actually useful, and how the platform should be leveraged. University of North Carolina School of Law professor Carissa Byrne Hessick wrote a widely discussed article in the Marquette Law Review in 2018 that urged fellow professors to be cautious in their Twitter use and refrain from offering legal takes in areas where they have no expertise. The article also encouraged tweeting law professors to avoid snark and strive to preserve the standing of the legal profession by remaining civil on the platform. The potential pitfalls of Twitter have likely convinced some law professors to stay away, Crawford said.

“Not everyone is comfortable going out with commentary,” she said. “Not everyone is comfortable with the personal criticism that often comes. Anytime you put yourself on social media, there will be quite a few things to deal with. It’s not for everyone.”

Women law professors appear to be using the platform at a higher rate. They account for 39% of full-time faculty, according to the AALS, yet comprise 46% of the Twitter users identified in the census.

Crawford did not collect data on which law professors have the most Twitter followers, though Ryan Whalen, a law professor at the University of Hong Kong, used Crawford’s 2018 census data for a deeper analysis of the legal education Twittersphere. He found that Harvard Law professor and activist Larry Lessig by far had the most followers, at 358,128. (Lessig’s follower count has remained fairly steady since then.)

Behind Lessig was Joyce White Vance, a former U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Alabama who now teaches at the University of Alabama and appears on MSNBC. Vance has since overtaken Lessig with 364,929 followers and tweets frequently about current events as well as criticism of President Donald Trump. The third most-followed law professor last year was Zephyr Teachout. The Fordham professor has nearly 108,000 followers and has run unsuccessfully for several New York offices in recent years.

Despite the rise of competitors such as Snapchat and Instagram, Crawford said she expects law professors to mostly stick to Twitter for the time being.

“There are a proliferation of platforms, but I don’t think any of them yet have the traction that Twitter does, at least among professionals,” she said. “For now, the more scholarly conversations are on Twitter.”

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"Daily Beast" featured Elisabeth Haub School of Law Professor Bridget J. Crawford in "New Epstein Victims"

08/26/2019

"Daily Beast" featured Elisabeth Haub School of Law Professor Bridget J. Crawford in "New Epstein Victims"

Before prosecutors dismiss their case against Jeffrey Epstein, victims of the deceased sex offender will get a chance to speak in court.

Tomorrow morning, multiple women are expected to appear in Manhattan federal court—including new accusers with plans to sue Epstein’s estate, which is already facing five other lawsuits over his alleged sex-trafficking scheme.

Famed lawyer Gloria Allred said she’ll be there with a number of clients who say they’re victims of the late financier. “We have not filed lawsuits for them yet, but we will be filing lawsuits for them soon,” Allred told The Daily Beast.

Attorney Brad Edwards, who’s represented Epstein’s victims for more than a decade, will also watch Tuesday’s hearing with his law partner, Stan Pottinger. 

“Regardless of the number of people who appear, the invitation for victims to be present and participate is very important, not only for the victims of Jeffrey Epstein but for crime victims generally,” Edwards said.

The closing of Epstein’s criminal case comes nearly two months after the 66-year-old’s July 6 arrest for child sex-trafficking—and weeks after his jail-house suicide. Epstein killed himself shortly after a cache of court records were unsealed in a 2015 lawsuit filed by Victoria Roberts Giuffre, who has long claimed Epstein kept her as his “sex slave” and forced her to have sex with Prince Andrew. (Buckingham Palace has denied the allegations.) The documents revealed more sexual abuse allegations against Epstein’s famous friends. 

After Epstein’s demise, the focus in the press quickly shifted to British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell, who accusers say was Epstein’s madam and recruited and groomed girls and took part in the abuse herself. Maxwell hasn’t been charged in connection to Epstein’s case, and it’s unclear whether she’s cooperating with authorities. 

Bridget J. Crawford, a professor at the Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University, told The Daily Beast last week that creditors and tax collectors could come forward seeking funds from the estate as victims file their complaints.

Epstein’s brother, Mark Epstein, is listed in the will as the sole relative “who would be entitled to share the estate if he had left no will.” According to Crawford, Mark is likely the only person who could challenge the validity of the document. 

“Mark could come forward and say, ‘This is not a valid will, it was executed when he was not of right mind.’ There [could] be multiple possible grounds for doing so—fraud, undue influence, duress for example,” she said.

“I expect the court to be inundated with claims against the estate,” Crawford added. “This thing’s going to go on for years.”

Matthew R. Reinhardt, a lawyer in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands, said “the complexity and character of the estate property usually determines how long the probate process will take.”

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