Researcher ORCID Identifier

Graduation Year


Date of Submission


Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Reader 1

Eric Helland

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© 2021 Maxine M Baghdadi


The Legal Origins Theory was developed by La Porta et al. and sought to categorize the legal rules, legal systems, human capital and beliefs of a country as being of either UK common law or French civil law (2008). This theory has found that the legal origin of a country is telling of their effectiveness in policy. This paper seeks to contribute to this area of research by examining the relationship between the legal origins of a country and its influence on pandemic law. It begins by studying the relationship between legal origins in determining the total cases and deaths per capita. It then narrows in on understanding stay-at-home orders by determining the threshold before a country enters lockdown and the efficiency of a lockdown. This is measured by regressing the number of days in a lockdown against the percentage change in cases and deaths per capita. This paper finds no significance between legal origins and total cases and deaths per capita. However, it does find significance in that countries of French legal origin have a higher threshold in the number of cases it reaches before implementing a stay-at-home order. Additionally, it finds that being in a lockdown for longer is not significant in determining the percentage change in daily cases per capita but it is significant in determining the percentage change in daily deaths per capita for both countries of origin

This thesis is restricted to the Claremont Colleges current faculty, students, and staff.