The civil justice system is increasingly being asked to resolve disputes between large aggregations of plaintiffs and defendants. This mass litigation is placing considerable strain on a system whose formal and informal procedures and practices are based on expectations about traditional disputants that no longer necessarily hold. Some formal mechanisms, such as class actions and multidistricting, have been devised to deal with certain classes of mass litigation, but there are questions about when and how they should be applied. This Note presents the Institute for Civil Justice's (ICJ) agenda for a program of research on mass tort litigation, and the results of ICJ work to date. The analysis explores the effects of aggregation on the characteristics, course, and outcome of mass litigation.
This report is part of the RAND Corporation Note series. The note was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1979 to 1993 that reported other outputs of sponsored research for general distribution.
This document and trademark(s) contained herein are protected by law. This representation of RAND intellectual property is provided for noncommercial use only. Unauthorized posting of this publication online is prohibited; linking directly to this product page is encouraged. Permission is required from RAND to reproduce, or reuse in another form, any of its research documents for commercial purposes. For information on reprint and reuse permissions, please visit www.rand.org/pubs/permissions.
The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.