The Collateral Source Rule: A Common Law Norm Under Special Interest Attack
According to Posnerian law and economics, common law (i.e., judge-made law) tends to promote efficiency. Public choice teaches that statutory (legislated) law need have no such efficiency property because, unlike appointed judges, legislators are subject to short election cycles and are beholden to special interests for election and re-election. The collateral source rule is a common law norm that permits an injured party to recover damages from both the tortfeasor (injurer) and from private insurance. Published work in the law and economics literature indicates that despite an appearance that the rule permits unwarranted double recover, the rule is indeed generally efficient. Despite its efficiency properties, the rule has been modified by statute in many jurisdictions in recent decades. Insurers reap transitory gains if exceptions to the collateral source rule are granted by statute whereas medical care providers achieve an ongoing gain if their sector is specifically excluded from the rule's application. The authors report the results of their exhaustive survey of statutory law concerning the collateral source rule in the fifty states, District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Virgin Islands. The categorized findings reveal significant exceptions to the collateral source rule introduced into statutory law to the benefit of the special interests identified.
|Date of creation:||Jun 2006|
|Publication status:||Published in Cato Journal, Vol. 28:1, Winter 2008, pp. 83-99.|
|Contact details of provider:|| Phone: (508)793-3362|
Fax: (508) 793-3708
Web page: http://www.holycross.edu/departments/economics/website/
More information through EDIRC
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- David Schap & Andrew Feeley, 2006. "(Much) More on the Collateral Source Rule," Working Papers 0605, College of the Holy Cross, Department of Economics.
- Rubin, Paul H & Bailey, Martin J, 1994. "The Role of Lawyers in Changing the Law," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 23(2), pages 807-831, June.
- Epstein, Richard A, 1988. "The Political Economy of Product Liability Reform," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(2), pages 311-315, May.
- Paul Rubin, 2005. "Public choice and tort reform," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 124(1), pages 223-236, July.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:hcx:wpaper:0606. 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: (Victor Matheson)
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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 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.