Constitutional Law Article

An Equilibrium-Adjustment Theory of the Fourth Amendment

Vol. 125 No. 2 Fourth Amendment law is often considered a theoretical embarrassment. The law consists of dozens of rules for very specific situations that seem to lack a coherent explanation. Constitutional protection varies dramatically based on seemingly arcane distinctions. This Article introduces a new theory that explains and justifies both the structure and content of Fourth Amendment rules: the theory of equilibrium-adjustment.