Tort Reform, Kiwi-Style

18 Pages Posted: 23 Jul 2008 Last revised: 24 Feb 2009


American legal scholars and social scientists have long been intrigued by New Zealand's accident compensation system, which essentially abolished common law tort almost 40 years ago. This paper, prepared for a conference sponsored by the Brookings Institution and Common Good, provides an up-to-date account of the New Zealand system, with a focus on its treatment of two types of claims - for medical injuries and emotional distress - that raise particularly vexing boundary problems for the system. It then discusses a number of lessons that U.S. policymakers and scholars can draw from the New Zealand experience.

Suggested Citation

Schuck, Peter H., Tort Reform, Kiwi-Style. Yale Law & Policy Review, Vol. 27, No. 1, Yale Law & Economics Research Paper No. 370, Available at SSRN:

Peter H. Schuck (Contact Author)

Yale University - Law School ( email )

P.O. Box 208215
New Haven, CT 06520-8215
United States

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