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Contingent Fees, Moral Hazard, and Attorney Rents: A Laboratory Experiment

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  • Michael McKee
  • Rudy Santore
  • Joel Shelton

Abstract

When attorney effort is not verifiable, previous theoretical work has found that a competitive legal services market may yield an equilibrium contingent fee that is strictly greater than the zero-profit contingent fee. However, these results require fairly sophisticated consumers who recognize that lower contingent fees do not induce sufficient attorney effort. This paper reports on tests of these predictions in an experimental setting.

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File URL: http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/cgi-bin/resolve?id=doi:10.1086/511897
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by University of Chicago Press in its journal The Journal of Legal Studies.

Volume (Year): 36 (2007)
Issue (Month): 2 (06)
Pages: 253-273

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Handle: RePEc:ucp:jlstud:v:36:y:2007:p:253-273

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Web page: http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JLS/

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Cited by:
  1. Christoph Engel & Heike Hennig-Schmidt & Bernd Irlenbusch & Sebastian Kube, 2009. "On Probation. An Experimental Analysis," Working Paper Series of the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods 2009_38, Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods.
  2. Andrew F. Daughety & Jennifer F. Reinganum, 2011. "Search, Bargaining, And Agency in the Market for Legal Services," Vanderbilt University Department of Economics Working Papers 1106, Vanderbilt University Department of Economics.
  3. Andrew F. Daughtey & Jennifer F. Reinganum, 2010. "Clients, Lawyers, Second Opinions, and Agency," Vanderbilt University Department of Economics Working Papers 1009, Vanderbilt University Department of Economics.
  4. Cotten, Stephen J. & Santore, Rudy, 2012. "Contingent fee caps, screening, and the quality of legal services," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 317-328.

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