Rent-Seeking Through Litigation: Adversarial and Inquisitorial Systems Compared
University of Minnesota - Law School; University of Bologna
International Review of Law and Economics, Vol. 22, No. 2, pp. 193-216, August 2002
George Mason Law & Economics Research Paper No. 00-28
This paper compares the adversarial system of adjudication, dominant in the common law tradition, with the inquisitorial system, dominant in the civil law tradition, using a rent-seeking, Nash equilibrium, model of litigation expenditure in which the litigants simultaneously choose their levels of effort with the goal of maximizing their returns from the case. The choice between the two systems is modeled as a continuous variable showing the equilibrium solutions of the game and their implications for procedural economy. The results are then utilized to characterize the optimal levels of adversarial and inquisitorial discovery with respect to the social benefits of truth finding and correct adjudication, and the private and administrative costs of litigation.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 37
JEL Classification: K4
Date posted: November 19, 2001