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The Impacts of the European Rule for Fee-Shifting on Litigation Behavior


George B. Shepherd


Emory University School of Law


BALANCING OF INTERESTS: LIBER AMICORUM PETER HAY ZUM 70. GEBURTSTAG, Hans-Eric Rasmussen-Bonne, Richard Freer, Wolfgang Luke and Wolfgang Weitnauer, eds., Verlag Recht und Wirtschaft GmbH, 2005
Emory Law and Economics Research Paper No. 06-06

Abstract:     
In honor of the international range and sophistication of Peter Hay's scholarship, this essay examines the impact of an important procedural rule that differs in Europe and the United States: shifting of attorneys fees in litigation. Existing studies suggest that, compared to a regime of no fee-shifting as in the United States, fee-shifting will have an ambiguous affect on the amount of litigation. In contrast, my analysis suggests that fee-shifting as actually practiced in many European countries will tend unambiguously to reduce the amount of litigation. It appears that actual experience in European courts confirms this theoretical prediction.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 8

Keywords: Litigation, legal fees, fee-shifting

JEL Classification: K10, K40, K41

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Date posted: December 20, 2005  

Suggested Citation

Shepherd, George B., The Impacts of the European Rule for Fee-Shifting on Litigation Behavior. BALANCING OF INTERESTS: LIBER AMICORUM PETER HAY ZUM 70. GEBURTSTAG, Hans-Eric Rasmussen-Bonne, Richard Freer, Wolfgang Luke and Wolfgang Weitnauer, eds., Verlag Recht und Wirtschaft GmbH, 2005; Emory Law and Economics Research Paper No. 06-06. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=871248

Contact Information

George B. Shepherd (Contact Author)
Emory University School of Law ( email )
1301 Clifton Road
Atlanta, GA 30322
United States
404-727-6978 (Phone)
404-727-6820 (Fax)
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