Living Outside the Law: How the Informal Economy Frustrates Enforcement of the Human Rights Regime for Billions of the World’s Most Marginalized Citizens

Miller, Brett J. | January 1, 2007

Failures to establish coherent legal regimes and workable market systems, often in developing countries and those transitioning from non-market economies, have led to thriving informal economies. In such, the costs are simply lower for the individual to remain outside of the law. By analyzing the informal phenomenon, its consequences, and effects upon many of the most important human rights, it is demonstrated that virtually the entire human rights corpus is frustrated by the idea of people living outside of the law. When people do not participate in the formal legal system in any meaningful way and have no real legal protections, human rights guarantees become little more than unfulfilled promises.