Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=1905782
 
 

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Experimental Evidence of the Relationship between Reading the Fine Print and Performance of Form-Contract Terms


Zev J. Eigen


Northwestern University School of Law


Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics, Forthcoming
Northwestern Public Law Research Paper No. 11-58
Northwestern Law & Econ Research Paper No. 11-24

Abstract:     
Recent empirical research has established what many assumed - few people read form-contracts. This research employs an online experimental design to fill gaps in the literature by asking two important questions: (1) To what extent does information about the exchange beyond the contract substitute for information in the contract, such that more external information reduces contract reading? (2) Is there a relationship between form-contract readership and contract performance? Results suggest that individuals spend almost three times more time reviewing form-contracts when less information is provided outside the contract, and that greater time spent reviewing form-contracts is associated with increased contract performance.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 20

Keywords: contract, form-contract, adhesive, consumer, web, online, experiment, experimental, fine print, boilerplate

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Date posted: August 5, 2011 ; Last revised: January 27, 2012

Suggested Citation

Eigen, Zev J., Experimental Evidence of the Relationship between Reading the Fine Print and Performance of Form-Contract Terms. Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics, Forthcoming; Northwestern Public Law Research Paper No. 11-58; Northwestern Law & Econ Research Paper No. 11-24. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1905782

Contact Information

Zev J. Eigen (Contact Author)
Northwestern University School of Law ( email )
375 E. Chicago Ave
Unit 1505
Chicago, IL 60611
United States

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