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Individual Dismissals in Europe and the United States: A Model on the Influence of the Legal Framework on Firing Costs

  • Miguel Malo

    ()

  • Joaquín Pérez

    ()

In this article, we present a model of individual dismissals based on the workers' right to file a suit against their employer arguing that the dismissal is unjustified or unfair. The model is a standard pre-trial bargaining game between a firm and a worker. We study two cases: when the law states the severance pay for unfair dismissal (the European case), and when judges can decide freely on the compensation to be paid to the worker (the American case). The model provides some guidelines for Labour Law reforms. In the European case, a decrease in the severance pay for unfair dismissals fixed by law will decrease the severance pay offered by the firm, and only under some assumptions will decrease the expected firing cost and will increase the settlement probability. In addition, the transition from the European to the American case is likely to increase the probability of settlement (and to decrease it in the opposite case) with ambiguous effects on agreed severance pay and expected firing costs.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1023/A:1021149824045
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Article provided by Springer in its journal European Journal of Law and Economics.

Volume (Year): 15 (2003)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
Pages: 47-63

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Handle: RePEc:kap:ejlwec:v:15:y:2003:i:1:p:47-63
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.springerlink.com/link.asp?id=100264

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  1. Spier, Kathryn E, 1992. "The Dynamics of Pretrial Negotiation," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 59(1), pages 93-108, January.
  2. Bentolila, Samuel & Saint-Paul, Gilles, 1994. "A model of labor demand with linear adjustment costs," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 1(3-4), pages 303-326, September.
  3. Landes, William M, 1971. "An Economic Analysis of the Courts," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 14(1), pages 61-107, April.
  4. Simon Deakin & Frank Wilkinson, 1999. "The Management of Redundancies in Europe: The Case of Great Britain," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 13(1), pages 41-89, 03.
  5. Miguel Malo, 2001. "European Labour Law and Severance Pay Determination in Collective Redundancies," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 12(1), pages 73-90, July.
  6. Bentolila, Samuel & Bertola, Giuseppe, 1990. "Firing Costs and Labour Demand: How Bad Is Eurosclerosis?," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 57(3), pages 381-402, July.
  7. Lucian Arye Bebchuk, 1984. "Litigation and Settlement under Imperfect Information," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 15(3), pages 404-415, Autumn.
  8. Miguel �. Malo, 2000. "A Simple Model of Severance Pay Determination: The Case of Individual Dismissals in Spain," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 14(2), pages 269-290, 06.
  9. Bertola, Giuseppe, 1990. "Job security, employment and wages," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 851-879, June.
  10. Walter Y. Oi, 1962. "Labor as a Quasi-Fixed Factor," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 70, pages 538.
  11. Emerson, Michael, 1988. "Regulation or deregulation of the labour market : Policy regimes for the recruitment and dismissal of employees in the industrialised countries," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 32(4), pages 775-817, April.
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