Unjustified enrichment is a large, important, and, in the case of our law, relatively newly organized area of law concentrating especially on circumstances in which courts order defendants to pay money or restore property to a plaintiff, not because the defendants have done something objectionable like having breached a contract or committed a tort, but solely because they have been otherwise "unjustifiably enriched" at the plaintiff's expense. This course will center on when and why such awards should (or should not) be made, issues that have, in fact, been debated for many centuries. The last session will consider whether a theory of unjustified enrichment can be used more broadly to justify reparations to large numbers of the descendants of past victims such as Native Americans or African-American slaves.
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