Reducing Variability in Civil Jury Awards

Law & Human Behavior, Vol. 21, No. 243, 1997

Posted: 14 Dec 2010

See all articles by Roselle Wissler

Roselle Wissler

Arizona State University (ASU) - Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law

Michael J. Saks

Arizona State University (ASU) - Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law

Allen J. Hart

Amherst College

David C. Evans

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Date Written: 1997

Abstract

The purpose of the present empirical study was to test several procedures that could be adopted for reducing unwanted variability in civil damage awards. Four methods for providing guidance to jurors (and judges) about the distribution of awards in comparable cases were compared to each other, to a no-guidance control, and to the capping of awards at a specified maximum, which has been the most commonly legislated "solution." The guidance conditions involved providing mock jurors with one of four different types of information on awards for similar injuries in similar cases: the average award, the award values within which 80% of awards fell, both the average award and the award range, and four example awards. The findings of this study suggest several alternative solutions that are better able than caps to solve the problem of unwanted variability in awards.

Keywords: juror decision-making, jury instructions, damages

Suggested Citation

Wissler, Roselle and Saks, Michael J. and Hart, Allen J. and Evans, David C., Reducing Variability in Civil Jury Awards (1997). Law & Human Behavior, Vol. 21, No. 243, 1997. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1724814

Roselle Wissler (Contact Author)

Arizona State University (ASU) - Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law ( email )

Box 877906
Tempe, AZ 85287-7906
United States

Michael J. Saks

Arizona State University (ASU) - Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law ( email )

Box 877906
Tempe, AZ 85287-7906
United States

Allen J. Hart

Amherst College ( email )

Amherst, MA 01002
United States

David C. Evans

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
726
PlumX Metrics