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The Logic of Comparable-Case Guidance in the Determination of Awards for Pain and Suffering and Punitive Damages

31 Pages Posted: 13 Jun 2016 Last revised: 12 May 2017

Hillel J Bavli

Harvard University

Date Written: June 8, 2016

Abstract

Little guidance is provided to fact-finders in arriving at awards for pain and suffering and punitive damages. Such awards are therefore highly variable. This article explains why methods involving comparable-case guidance — information regarding awards in comparable cases as guidance for determining damage awards — are generally effective in reducing unpredictability and improving the reliability of awards for pain and suffering and punitive damages. The article addresses major objections to such methods, and provides relevant legal context and direction for implementation.

Suggested Citation

Bavli, Hillel J, The Logic of Comparable-Case Guidance in the Determination of Awards for Pain and Suffering and Punitive Damages (June 8, 2016). University of Cincinnati Law Review, Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2792325

Hillel J Bavli (Contact Author)

Harvard University ( email )

1737 Cambridge Street
3rd Floor
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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