This paper, reprinted from The University of Chicago Law Review, v. 53, no. 2, 1986, discusses the changes in federal litigation during the almost fifty years that the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure have been in effect. The paper considers why the drafters of the Rules did what they did, how the Rules in turn helped to create the environment that has given rise to the contemporary criticism of civil litigation, and how they might be revised. The author suggests that any revisions of the Rules ought to be undertaken with the intent of preserving their accomplishments, including ready access to the judicial apparatus.
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.
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.