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Playing it Safe with Low Conditional Fees versus Being Insured by High Contingent Fees

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  • Emons, Winand

Abstract

Under contingent fees the attorney gets a share of the judgement; under conditional fees they get an upscale premium if the case is won, which is, however, unrelated to the adjudicated amount. We compare conditional and contingent fees in a framework where lawyers choose between a safe and a risky litigation strategy. Under conditional fees lawyers prefer the safe strategy, under contingent fess the risky one. Risk-averse plaintiffs prefer conditional fees over contingent fees when lawyering costs are low and vice versa for high lawyering costs.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 4841.

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Date of creation: Jan 2005
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:4841

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Keywords: conditional fees; contingent fees; incentives; insurance; risk aversion;

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  1. Winand Emons, 2007. "Conditional versus contingent fees," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 59(1), pages 89-101, January.
  2. Kirstein, Roland & Rickman, Neil, 2002. ""Third Party Contingency" contracts in settlement and litigation," CSLE Discussion Paper Series 2002-11, Saarland University, CSLE - Center for the Study of Law and Economics.
  3. Emons, Winand & Garoupa, Nuno, 2004. "The Economics of US-Style Contingent Fees and UK-Style Conditional Fees," CEPR Discussion Papers 4473, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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Cited by:
  1. Bertrand Chopard & Thomas Cortade & Eric Langlais, 2008. "Trial and settlement negotiations between asymmetrically skilled parties," EconomiX Working Papers 2008-32, University of Paris West - Nanterre la Défense, EconomiX.
  2. Bruno Deffains & Eric Langlais, 2011. "Informational Externalities and Settlements in Mass Tort Litigations," EconomiX Working Papers 2011-14, University of Paris West - Nanterre la Défense, EconomiX.
  3. Florian Baumann & Tim Friehe, 2012. "Contingent fees meet the British rule: an exploratory study," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 150(3), pages 499-510, March.
  4. Friehe, Tim, 2010. "Contingent fees and legal expenses insurance: Comparison for varying defendant fault," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(4), pages 283-290, December.
  5. Deffains, Bruno & Langlais, Eric, 2007. "Informational externalities and informational sharing in class action suits," MPRA Paper 4846, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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