The Divergence of Legal Procedures

45 Pages Posted: 15 Feb 2008 Last revised: 26 Sep 2010

See all articles by Aron Balas

Aron Balas

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Rafael La Porta

Dartmouth College - Tuck School of Business; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Florencio Lopez de Silanes

SKEMA Business School; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Andrei Shleifer

Harvard University - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)

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Date Written: February 2008

Abstract

Djankov et al. (2003a) propose and measure for 109 countries in the year 2000 an index of formalism of legal procedure for two simple disputes: eviction of a non-paying tenant and collection of a bounced check. For a sub-sample of 40 countries, we compute this index every year starting in 1950, which allows us to study the evolution of legal rules. We find that between 1950 and 2000, the formalism of legal procedure did not converge, and possibly diverged, between common law and French civil law countries. At least in this specific area of law, the results are inconsistent with the hypothesis that national legal systems are converging, and support the view that legal origins exert long lasting influence on legal rules.

Suggested Citation

Balas, Aron and La Porta, Rafael and Lopez de Silanes, Florencio and Shleifer, Andrei, The Divergence of Legal Procedures (February 2008). NBER Working Paper No. w13809, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1093646

Aron Balas (Contact Author)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

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Rafael La Porta

Dartmouth College - Tuck School of Business ( email )

Hanover, NH 03755
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National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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Florencio Lopez de Silanes

SKEMA Business School ( email )

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France

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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Andrei Shleifer

Harvard University - Department of Economics ( email )

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HOME PAGE: http://www.economics.harvard.edu/~ashleife/

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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United States

European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)

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