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http://ssrn.com/abstract=2208811
 
 

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Bankrupt Apologies


Jennifer K. Robbennolt


University of Illinois College of Law

Robert M. Lawless


University of Illinois College of Law

January 29, 2013

Illinois Program in Law, Behavior and Social Science Paper No. LBSS13-20

Abstract:     
Apologies result in better outcomes for wrongdoers in a variety of legal contexts. Previous research, however, has primarily addressed settings in which a clear victim receives the apology. This research examines the influence of apologies on a different kind of legal decision — the decision of a bankruptcy judge to confirm or not to confirm a proposed repayment plan. This expands examination of apologies to a legal setting in which there is no clear 'victim' and to decisions of a neutral (non-victim) decision maker. We find that judges’ assessments of debtors were influenced by apologies. These assessments, in turn, affected judges’ confirmation decisions.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 29

Keywords: apology, bankruptcy, judicial decision making, law & psychology

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Date posted: January 30, 2013 ; Last revised: February 13, 2013

Suggested Citation

Robbennolt, Jennifer K. and Lawless, Robert M., Bankrupt Apologies (January 29, 2013). Illinois Program in Law, Behavior and Social Science Paper No. LBSS13-20. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2208811 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2208811

Contact Information

Jennifer K. Robbennolt
University of Illinois College of Law ( email )
504 E. Pennsylvania Avenue
Champaign, IL 61820
United States
217-333-6623 (Phone)
Robert M. Lawless (Contact Author)
University of Illinois College of Law ( email )
504 E. Pennsylvania Avenue
Champaign, IL 61820
United States

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