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Advocatus, et non Latro? Testing the Supplier-Induced Demand Hypothesis for the Italian Courts of Justice

Author

Listed:
  • Paolo Buonanno
  • Matteo M. Galizzi

Abstract

We explore the causality relationship between litigation rates and the number of lawyers, drawing on an original panel dataset for the 169 Italian first instance courts of justice between 2000 and 2007. In this time bracket, both the number of lawyers and the civil litigation rate sharply increased, and a mandatory minimum fee was in place for lawyers services. We first document that the number of lawyers is positively correlated with different measures of litigation rate. Then, using an instrumental variables strategy, we find that a 10 percent increase of lawyers over population is associated with an increase between 1.6 and 6 percent in civil litigation rates. Our empirical analysis supports the supplier-induced demand (SID) hypothesis for the Italian lawyers: following the sharp increase in the number of lawyers, and in the impossibility of competing in price because of the minimum fee regulation, some lawyers could have opportunistically used their in- formational advantage to induce their clients to bring lawsuits into court more often than it would be optimal if they were acting in the exclusive interest of the clients.

Suggested Citation

  • Paolo Buonanno & Matteo M. Galizzi, 2012. "Advocatus, et non Latro? Testing the Supplier-Induced Demand Hypothesis for the Italian Courts of Justice," Carlo Alberto Notebooks 250, Collegio Carlo Alberto.
  • Handle: RePEc:cca:wpaper:250
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    File URL: http://www.carloalberto.org/assets/working-papers/no.250.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Juan S. Mora-Sanguinetti & Nuno Garoupa, 2015. "Litigation in Spain 2001-2010: Exploring the market for legar services," Working Papers 1505, Banco de España;Working Papers Homepage.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    laywers; litigation rates; credence goods;

    JEL classification:

    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • K42 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law
    • R10 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - General

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