Changes in the tort system: helping inform the policy debate

by Gustave H. Shubert

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This paper is extracted from the Director's Report in the Institute for Civil Justice's (ICJ) Report on the First Six Program Years, April 1980-March 1986. It reviews findings of the ICJ's research on the civil justice system regarding (1) civil jury verdicts, (2) the private and public costs of civil litigation, and (3) the effectiveness of the processes of the system. This research underlines the need for policymakers to anticipate the impacts of legislative changes on costs, outcomes, and processes. In addition, it emphasizes the need to build into every reform the capacity to evaluate its actual impact and to provide for subsequent correction.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation Paper series. The paper was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 2003 that captured speeches, memorials, and derivative research, usually prepared on authors' own time and meant to be the scholarly or scientific contribution of individual authors to their professional fields. Papers were less formal than reports and did not require rigorous peer review.

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.