Evidence, Procedure, and the Upside of Cognitive Error
AbstractHumans are imperfect information processors, a fact almost universally bemoaned in legal scholarship. But when it comes to how the legal system itself processes information, cognitive limitations are largely good news. Evidentiary procedure - inclusive of trial, discovery, and investigation - relies heavily on the fact that human mental capacity is limited. Such limits are crucial to separating sincere from insincere testimony. Moreover, notes and other cognitive artifacts that individuals make to compensate for their limited cognitive ability are an important source of evidence. This article's primary objective is to elucidate the extent to which cognitive imperfection is beneficial rather than detrimental to evidentiary process and thus to law as a whole. Secondarily, the article discusses how the law of evidentiary process tilts the playing field of litigation in a manner that exacerbates the cognitive limitations of the potentially insincere and offsets the limitations of competing participants.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University of Pennsylvania Law School in its series Scholarship at Penn Law with number upenn_wps-1014.
Date of creation:
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.law.upenn.edu/
Evidence; procedure; cognitive error; eyewitness testimony; jury deliberation;
Other versions of this item:
- Chris Sanchirico, . "Evidence, Procedure, and the Upside of Cognitive Error," American Law & Economics Association Annual Meetings 1015, American Law & Economics Association.
- NEP-ALL-2004-08-02 (All new papers)
- NEP-CBE-2004-08-02 (Cognitive & Behavioural Economics)
- NEP-LAW-2004-08-02 (Law & Economics)
You can help add them by filling out this form.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Christopher F. Baum).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.