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Empirical legal studies

University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School

2013

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Full-Text Articles in Law

Litigating Toward Settlement, Christina L. Boyd, David A. Hoffman Jan 2013

Litigating Toward Settlement, Christina L. Boyd, David A. Hoffman

All Faculty Scholarship

Civil litigation typically ends when the parties compromise. While existing theories of settlement primarily focus on information exchange, we instead examine how motion practice, especially non-discovery motions, can substantially shape parties’ knowledge about their cases and thereby influence the timing of settlement. Using docket-level federal district court data, we find a number of strong effects regarding how motions can influence this process, including that the filing of a motion significantly speeds case settlement, that granted motions are more immediately critical to settlement timing than motions denied, and that plaintiff victories have a stronger effect than defendant victories. These results provide …