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

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  • Winand Emons

Abstract

Under contingent fees the attorney gets a share of the judgment; under conditional fees he gets 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 Universitaet Bern, Departement Volkswirtschaft in its series Diskussionsschriften with number dp0419.

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Date of creation: Dec 2004
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Handle: RePEc:ube:dpvwib:dp0419

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

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  1. Roland Kirstein & Neil Rickman, 2004. ""Third Party Contingency" Contracts in Settlement and Litigation," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 160(4), pages 555-, December.
  2. Winand Emons, 2007. "Conditional versus contingent fees," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 59(1), pages 89-101, January.
  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. Chopard, Bertrand & Cortade, Thomas & Langlais, Eric, 2008. "Trial and settlement negotiations between asymmetrically skilled parties," MPRA Paper 8995, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. 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.
  3. Bruno Deffains & Eric Langlais, 2011. "Informational externalities and settlements in mass tort litigations," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 32(2), pages 241-262, October.
  4. Florian Baumann & Tim Friehe, 2012. "Contingent fees meet the British rule: an exploratory study," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 150(3), pages 499-510, March.
  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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