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2007

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Full-Text Articles in Law

The Effect Of Judicial Expedience On Attorney Fees In Class Actions, Eric Helland, Jonathan Klick Jan 2007

The Effect Of Judicial Expedience On Attorney Fees In Class Actions, Eric Helland, Jonathan Klick

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Judges facing exogenous constraints on their pecuniary income have an incentive to reduce their workload to increase their private welfare. In the face of an increase in caseload, this incentive will induce judges to attempt to terminate some cases more rapidly. In class action cases, failing to grant an attorney fee request will delay termination. This conflict is likely to lead judges to authorize higher fees as court congestion increases. Using two data sets of class action settlements, we show that attorney fees are significantly and positively related to the congestion level of the court hearing the case.


Docketology, District Courts And Doctrine, David A. Hoffman, Alan J. Izenman, Jeffrey Lidicker Jan 2007

Docketology, District Courts And Doctrine, David A. Hoffman, Alan J. Izenman, Jeffrey Lidicker

All Faculty Scholarship

Empirical legal scholars have traditionally modeled trial court judicial opinion writing by assuming that judges act rationally, seeking to maximize their influence by writing opinions in politically important cases. Support for this hypothesis has reviewed published trial court opinions, finding that civil rights and other "hot" topics are more likely to be explained than purportedly ordinary legal problems involved in resolving social security and commercial law cases. This orthodoxy comforts consumers of legal opinions, because it suggests that they are largely representative of judicial work. To test such views, we collected data from a thousand cases in four different jurisdictions. …