The Effects of Seeking Punitive Damages on the Processing of Tort Claims
Thomas A. Eaton
David B. Mustard
Susette M. Talarico
Punitive damages are a controversial aspect of tort litigation and have been the subjct of numerous theoretical, empirical, and experimental studies. Critics have argued that the uncertainty and unpredictability that punitive damages claims inject into a case may increase the rate and amount of settlements and carry systemic consequences for the general processing of tort claims. This paper represents the first empirical examination of this hypothesis. With one of the most comprehensive data sets of tort litigation, we analyze cases that are likely to have caps on punitive damages awards and cases that are likely to be uncapped. We examine the effect of the decision to seek punitive damages on several major decision points in the tort litigation process in a series of logit regression models. With extensive control variables, we find that seeking punitive damages has no statistically significant effect on most phases of the tort litigation process.
In order to set up a list of libraries that you have access to,
you must first login
or sign up.
Then set up a personal list of libraries from your profile page by
clicking on your user name at the top right of any screen.