Congestion and Delay in the Final Court of Justice: An Economic Interpretation

22 Pages Posted: 8 May 2009

See all articles by Saibal Kar

Saibal Kar

Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta; Institute of Labor Economics (IZA)

Indrajit Mallick

Centre for Studies in Social Sciences Calcutta

Date Written: August 2008

Abstract

A common feature in different courts of appeal, including the Supreme Courts of different countries is inordinate delay in administration of justice. Increasing caseload per judge is often treated as the culprit and hiring more judges is a popular corrective device. Particularly, for the Supreme Court there exists an ingrained conflict regarding the time and quality-efficient administration of justice, as the judges themselves are responsible for reviewing and selecting cases for further appeal. Given this choice, the trade off between number of cases filed and quality of judgment, with constrained optimization by potential litigants and social planner has not been explored so far. We argue that contrary to popular expectations, an increase in the number of judges may raise caseload per judge. Similarly, a social planner’s decision to deepen the reach of justice may inspire more litigation from the subjects and therefore is self-defeating in practice.

Keywords: Supreme Court, Litigant, Justice, Delay, Caseload

JEL Classification: K10, K40, K41

Suggested Citation

Kar, Saibal and Mallick, Indrajit, Congestion and Delay in the Final Court of Justice: An Economic Interpretation (August 2008). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1399385 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1399385

Saibal Kar (Contact Author)

Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta ( email )

R-1, Baishnabghata Patuli Township
Calcutta, 700 094
India
91-33-2462 7252 (Phone)
91-33-2462 6183 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.cssscal.org

Institute of Labor Economics (IZA) ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Indrajit Mallick

Centre for Studies in Social Sciences Calcutta ( email )

R! Baishnabghata Patuli Township
Kolkata, West Bengal, India
Kolkata, West Bengal 700094
India
91-033-24627252 (Phone)
91-033-24626183 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.cssscal.org

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