Sarah Jane  Hughes

Sarah Jane Hughes

University Scholar and Fellow in Commercial Law

  • A.B., Mount Holyoke College 1971
  • J.D., University of Washington 1974
  • Earned her A.B. cum laude from Mount Holyoke College
  • Received her J.S. from the University of Washington, where she served on the board of editors for the Washington Law Review
  • Attorney-Advisor, Federal Trade Commission Bureau of Consumer Protection, Washington, D.C. and Seattle, Washington (1974-1988)
  • Reporter, Standing Committee on Payments Systems, Permanent Editorial Board for the Uniform Commercial Code (2003-present)
  • Elected member, American Law Institute (2000-present)
  • Member, American Bar Association liaison to the Money Services Act Drafting Committee

Professor Hughes is a dedicated and dynamic teacher, and for her enthusiastic focus on students she was honored with the Law School's Leon Wallace Teaching Award in 1993 and the graduating class's Gavel Award in 1996, 1997, and 2000. Her courses include Sales, Negotiable Instruments, Secured Transactions, Regulated Industries — Banking Law, and White Collar Crime.

Hughes is also a nationally recognized expert on payment systems (domestic, international, Internet banking, smart cards, wire transfers, checks, embezzlement, and credit cards); public and private methods to deter, detect, and prosecute domestic and international money laundering; and consumer protection and financial privacy.

She is a member of the American Bar Association's Cyberspace Law Committee (where she co-chairs the Working Group in Electronic Payment Services, and of the Business Law, Antitrust and International Law Sections. In the ABA Business Law Section, she focuses on the areas of electronic commerce, payments systems, and the uniform commercial code.

Selected Works
  • Senate Banking Committee Subcommittees on Economic Policy and on National Security and International Trade and Finance Hearing on The Present and Future Impact of Virtual Currency, (November 2013)
  • Red Skies in the Morning -- Professional Ethics at the Dawn of Cloud Computing (with Roland L. Trope), 38 WILLIAM MITCHELL LAW REVIEW 111 (2011).
  • Developments in the Laws Governing Electronic Payments Made Through Gift Cards, Debit and Prepaid Cards, Credit Cards, and Direct Deposits of Federal Benefits(with Stephen T. Middlebrook), 66 BUSINESS LAWYER 159 (2010).
  • Payments Data Security Breaches and Oil Spills: What Lessons Can Payments Security Learn from the Laws Governing Remediation of the Exxon Valdez, Deepwater Horizon, and Other Oil Spills?, 5 BROOKLYN JOURNAL OF CORPORATE, FINANCIAL & COMMERCIAL LAW 111 (2010).
  • Federal Payroll, Gift, and Prepaid Card Developments: FDIC Deposit Insurance Eligibility and the Credit CARD Act of 2009, 65 BUSINESS LAWYER (Forthcoming, 2009).
  • RESPONDING TO NATIONAL SECURITY LETTERS, A PRACTICAL GUIDE FOR LEGAL COUNSEL (with David Fidler). Chicago: American Bar Association, 2009.
  • Some Basic Concerns about the CFPA Legislation and a Partial Response to Professor Bar-Gill's "The Consumer Financial Protection Agency: Sorting the Critiques", 1 LOMBARD STREET 31 (2009).
  • Developments in the Laws Affecting Electronic Payments and Stored-Value Products: A Year of Stored-Value Bankruptcies, Significant Legislative Proposals, and Federal Enforcement Actions (with Stephen T. Middlebrook and Patricia J. Allouise), 64 BUSINESS LAWYER 219 (2008).
  • Duty Issues in the Ever-Changing World of Payments Processing: Is It Time for New Rules? 83 Chic.-Kent L. Rev. (2007) (symposium issue for the Rethinking Payments Law Symposium, April 27, 2007, sponsored by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and New York City Area Law Schools).
  • Electronic Fund Transfers and Other Non-U.C.C. Payment Methods, in HAWKLAND'S UNIFORM COMMERCIAL CODE SERIES (forthcoming Nov. 2007) (with Frederick H. Miller).
  • Developments in the Law Concerning Stored-Value Cards and Other Electronic Payments Products, 63 BUS. LAW. (forthcoming Nov. 2007) (with Stephen T. Middlebrook and Broox Peterson).
  • Overview of Electronic Payment Regulation in the United States, in E-PAYMENTS: LAW AND REGULATION (Thaer Sabri, ed., Oxford University Press 2008) (with Stephen T. Middlebrook).
  • Developments in the Law Concerning Stored Value and Other Prepaid Products, 62 BUS. LAW. 229 at 229 (2006) (with Stephen T. Middlebrook and Broox W. Peterson).
  • Stored-Value Cards: A Perspective from South of the Border - the Canadian-US Border, That is, (IT Canada Association for Participants in the Tenth Annual Canadian IT Law Association Conference, Toronto, Canada 2006).