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1989

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Risk-Utility Analysis And The Learned Hand Formula: A Hand That Helps Or A Hand That Hides?, Barbara Ann White Jan 1989

Risk-Utility Analysis And The Learned Hand Formula: A Hand That Helps Or A Hand That Hides?, Barbara Ann White

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Judicial inconsistencies in balancing costs against benefits in legal determinations, sometimes referred to as the Learned Hand Formula, indicate that the implications are not fully understood. The incorporation of more formal economic cost-benefit analysis by some courts has only served to increase the confusion and wariness about fostering such guidelines for social behavior.

This article's purpose is threefold. One is to demonstrate how the use of cost-benefit analysis necessarily imparts the moral and/or political values of the user into his or her decisions. While the cost-benefit technique is itself value-neutral, its application, as will be shown, requires that ...