IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/ucp/jlawec/v38y1995i1p225-50.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Litigation and Settlement under the English and American Rules: Theory and Evidence

Author

Listed:
  • Hughes, James W
  • Snyder, Edward A

Abstract

In contrast to the American rule, whereby each party bears its own costs, the English rule requires losers at trial to pay the winner's legal fees, up to a reasonable limit. We develop six hypotheses regarding how these two cost-allocation rules might affect settlements and litigated outcomes through changes in (1) the selection of cases reaching the settle-versus-litigate stage and (2) behavior thereafter. Using data from Florida, which applied the English rule to medical malpractice claims during the period 1980-85, we examine the rules' effects on the probability of plaintiffs' winning at trial, jury awards, and out-of-court settlements. The English rule increased plaintiff success rates at trial, average jury awards, and out-of-court settlements. Our interpretation of these findings emphasizes that the overall quality of the claims reaching the settle-versus-litigate stage must improve to generate the combination of effects observed. Copyright 1995 by the University of Chicago.

Suggested Citation

  • Hughes, James W & Snyder, Edward A, 1995. "Litigation and Settlement under the English and American Rules: Theory and Evidence," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 38(1), pages 225-250, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucp:jlawec:v:38:y:1995:i:1:p:225-50
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/467330
    Download Restriction: Access to the online full text or PDF requires a subscription.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Cooter, Robert D & Rubinfeld, Daniel L, 1989. "Economic Analysis of Legal Disputes and Their Resolution," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 27(3), pages 1067-1097, September.
    2. Jennifer F. Reinganum & Louise L. Wilde, 1986. "Settlement, Litigation, and the Allocation of Litigation Costs," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 17(4), pages 557-566, Winter.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ucp:jlawec:v:38:y:1995:i:1:p:225-50. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Journals Division). General contact details of provider: http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JLE/ .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.