Take Action

Home | Faculty & Research Overview | Research

Research Details

Deregulatory Takings and Breach of the Regulatory Contract, New York University Law Review


Over the past century, as the regulatory state steadily expanded its reach, courts frequently addressed claims that regulatory actions amounted to an unconstitutional taking. Recently, however, legislation in the telecommunications and electric power industries have brought deregulatory concerns to the fore. In this landmark Article, Mr. Sidak and Professor Spulber present the first detailed analysis of the interaction between the Takings Clause, deregulation, network pricing, and contract law. In the typical case of regulated industries, firms and their investors agree to bear considerable incumbent burdens in exchange for a regulated rate of return. Sidak and Spulber first demonstrate that this arrangement represents a regulatory contract and find that recent deregulatory measures constitute breach. The authors then argue that, whether or not a regulatory contract in fact exists, recent mandatory unbundling in the electric power industry and open-access regulation in the telecommunications field effectuate a taking without just compensation. Finally, relying on concepts such as investment-backed expectations and the efficient component-pricing rule, the authors not only demonstrate that damages would be equivalent under either contractor takings theory, but also warn that governments could face enormous liability for their deregulatory measures.




J.Gregory Sidak, Daniel Spulber

Date Published



Sidak, J.Gregory, and Daniel Spulber. 1996. Deregulatory Takings and Breach of the Regulatory Contract. New York University Law Review. 71(4): 851-999.


Explore leading research and ideas

Find articles, podcast episodes, and videos that spark ideas in lifelong learners, and inspire those looking to advance in their careers.
learn more


Review Courses & Schedules

Access information about specific courses and their schedules by viewing the interactive course scheduler tool.


Discover the path to your goals

Whether you choose our Full-Time, Part-Time or Executive MBA program, you’ll enjoy the same unparalleled education, exceptional faculty and distinctive culture.
learn more

Take Action