Law as capitalist technique

Alastair Hudson

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This article analyses how one of the aspects of law (little discussed in the literature) is as a series of techniques in practice which facilitate the activities of the current model of capitalism. Commonalities are drawn between traditional trusts law and offshore trusts law enabling tax avoidance; company law and the extraction of value from businesses (as with BHS); how corporate governance failures in UK company law enable the avoidance of personal liability (as with Carillion and Enron), and their comparison with the regulation of banks; and how the concept of ‘industrial democracy’ set out in the 1970s enables a different way of modelling these legal techniques. This article prefaces in a little more detail the work of the Corporate Governance Policy Review which I am leading for the British Labour Party in 2018.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)58-87
Number of pages30
JournalKing's Law Journal
Issue number1
Early online date5 Aug 2018
Publication statusPublished - 28 Sep 2018


  • capitalism
  • capitalist economics
  • tax avoidance

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