Drug testing welfare recipients as a constitutional condition

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2 Scopus citations

Abstract

This Note challenges the prior and current scholarship on suspicionless drug testing of welfare recipients, and the Supreme Court's special needs doctrine more broadly, by applying the doctrine of unconstitutional conditions to the cases. It contends that the Fourth Amendment's special needs doctrine is insufficient, because conditioning welfare benefits on drug testing may fail the special needs test but still be a constitutional condition. This Note argues that, where the unconstitutional conditions doctrine could otherwise apply, the doctrine is in fact necessary to apply; that doing so resolves certain contradictions and fictions that currently exist in the Fourth Amendment doctrine, while better explaining some of the Fourth Amendment cases; and that conditioning welfare on drug testing is more likely to be constitutional under the unconstitutional conditions doctrine than under the current Fourth Amendment approach, which would instead stop the inquiry with the special needs doctrine.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1153-1193
Number of pages41
JournalStanford Law Review
Volume65
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Law

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