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Careerist Judges

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  • Levy, Gilat

Abstract

In this Paper I analyse how careerist judges formulate their decisions using information they uncover during deliberations, as well as relevant information from previous decisions. I assume that judges have reputation concerns and try to signal to an evaluator that they can interpret the law correctly. If an appeal is brought, the appellate court’s decision reveals whether the judge interpreted properly the law and allows the evaluator to assess the judge’s ability. The monitoring possibilities for the evaluator are therefore endogenous, because the probability of an appeal depends on the judge’s decision. I find that judges with career concerns tend to inefficiently contradict previous decisions. I also show that such judges behave more efficiently when elected by the public than when appointed by fellow superior judges.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 3948.

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Date of creation: Jun 2003
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:3948

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Related research

Keywords: career concerns; judicial decision-making;

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References

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  1. Trueman, Brett, 1994. "Analyst Forecasts and Herding Behavior," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 7(1), pages 97-124.
  2. Daughety, Andrew F & Reinganum, Jennifer F, 1999. "Stampede to Judgment: Persuasive Influence and Herding Behavior by Courts," American Law and Economics Review, Oxford University Press, vol. 1(1-2), pages 158-89, Fall.
  3. Crawford, Vincent P & Sobel, Joel, 1982. "Strategic Information Transmission," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1431-51, November.
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  5. Scharfstein, David. & Stein, Jeremy C., 1988. "Herd behavior and investment," Working papers WP 2062-88., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
  6. Stephen Morris, 2001. "Political Correctness," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(2), pages 231-265, April.
  7. Landes, William M & Posner, Richard A, 2000. "Citations, Age, Fame, and the Web," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 29(1), pages 319-44, January.
  8. Miceli, Thomas J. & Cosgel, Metin M., 1994. "Reputation and judicial decision-making," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 31-51, January.
  9. Whitman, Douglas Glen, 2000. "Evolution of the Common Law and the Emergence of Compromise," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 29(2), pages 753-81, June.
  10. Shavell, Steven, 1995. "The Appeals Process as a Means of Error Correction," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(2), pages 379-426, June.
  11. Rasmusen, Eric, 1994. "Judicial Legitimacy as a Repeated Game," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 10(1), pages 63-83, April.
  12. Salzberger, Eli & Fenn, Paul, 1999. "Judicial Independence: Some Evidence from the English Court of Appeal," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 42(2), pages 831-47, October.
  13. Avery, Christopher N. & Chevalier, Judith A., 1999. "Herding over the career," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 63(3), pages 327-333, June.
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