The Impact of Counsel: An Analysis of Empirical Evidence

Seattle Journal for Social Justice, Vol. 9, No. 1, pp. 51-96, 2010

45 Pages Posted: 12 Oct 2011

See all articles by Rebecca L. Sandefur

Rebecca L. Sandefur

American Bar Foundation; Arizona State University

Date Written: February 11, 2010

Abstract

In this article, I provide three lenses on empirical evidence about the American public’s experience with civil justice problems: the depth of public experience, the scope of public experience, and the impact of counsel on public experience. The analysis of empirical evidence reveals a fundamental problem with traditional U.S. thinking and policy concerning access to justice: both are too narrowly focused on law and formal legal institutions. To move forward, we need both new understanding and new policies. New understanding comes from viewing justice problems from the public’s perspective. New policies should include providing effective, accessible, nonlegal routes to solutions for common and significant civil justice problems; these routes will be a necessary complement to the traditional solution of more access to law.

Keywords: lawyers, access to justice, right to counsel, legal aid, civil justice

JEL Classification: I30, K4

Suggested Citation

Sandefur, Rebecca L., The Impact of Counsel: An Analysis of Empirical Evidence (February 11, 2010). Seattle Journal for Social Justice, Vol. 9, No. 1, pp. 51-96, 2010. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1942350

Rebecca L. Sandefur (Contact Author)

American Bar Foundation ( email )

750 N. Lake Shore Drive
Chicago, IL 60611
United States

Arizona State University ( email )

Tempe, AZ 85287
United States

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