Tuesday, January 27, 2015
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Study examines how litigants want cases resolved

By
From page A5 | January 22, 2014 |

As court systems throughout the country struggle to deliver civil justice in the face of budget cuts, a new study by a UC Davis law professor finds that people involved in civil lawsuits prefer mediation to nonbinding arbitration and like judge trials more than jury trials.

In her study, “The Psychology of Procedural Preference: How Litigants Evaluate Legal Procedures Ex Ante,” Donna Shestowsky, who teaches negotiation strategy, alternative dispute resolution and legal psychology, reveals the legal procedures preferred by people involved in civil lawsuits at the start of their cases.

The findings could help court systems design future generations of court-connected alternative dispute resolution programs by providing guidance on which procedures litigants find more appealing.

ADR programs offer procedures that are alternatives to trial; mediation and nonbinding arbitration are common forms of ADR.

“The clear overall preference that litigants expressed for mediation over nonbinding arbitration has important implications for courts that want to draw litigants into their voluntary ADR programs, especially if they offer only one ADR procedure,” she said. “This finding helps to resolve a long-standing debate over which of the two procedures litigants prefer.”

Overall, litigants liked mediation, the judge trial, and negotiations that included the litigants along with their attorneys more than all other examined procedures. A judge trial is where a judge determines the verdict rather than a jury.

The study also found that compared to men, women were significantly less attracted to jury trials and binding arbitration.

Repeat players — those who had been either a defendant or plaintiff in a prior case — liked the idea of using binding arbitration for their case more than first-time litigants. “This finding resonates with the idea that repeat litigants are more likely than first-time litigants to appreciate the fact that trials are often associated with painful, protracted discovery and the threat of an appeal.”

The study also found that litigants preferred negotiations that included the parties along with their attorneys to negotiations that took place between the attorneys only. And the more litigants were confident of a trial win, the less they liked the option of the attorneys negotiating without the parties also being present.

Shestowsky’s project is the first multijurisdictional study that will explore how civil litigants assess procedures at various points during the same lawsuit.

This is the first publication in a multipaper series, looking at litigants’ preferences at the beginning of a case. Subsequent papers will explore litigants’ views at the end of their lawsuit. This article appears in the latest edition of the Iowa Law Review, released Jan. 1.

Shestowsky collected extensive data from more than 400 litigants, in 19 different states, whose cases were filed in court systems in California, Oregon and Utah.

Case types included contract, employment, civil rights, medical malpractice, personal injury, and property disputes. This project was funded by competitive grants from the National Science Foundation, the American Bar Association Section on Litigation and the University of California.

— UC Davis News

Comments

comments

.

News

Interfaith event focuses on justice

By Fred Gladdis | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
In vino veritas: A criminal case and intrigue in Napa Valley

By New York Times News Service | From Page: A1 | Gallery

Parking lawsuit may be more than meets the eye

By Dave Ryan | From Page: A1

 
Crash leads to DUI, hit-run arrest

By Lauren Keene | From Page: A2

 
Senate Dems block GOP effort to wind down pipeline debate

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

New-home sales jump 11.6% in December

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Blizzard howls its way into Boston

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2 | Gallery

 
Share your love (story) with us

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Pets of the week

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Workshop offers tips on GoPro cameras

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Sutter Davis Hospital seeks volunteer doulas

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

 
Winter produce, treats available at Wednesday market

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Have a ‘Heart to Heart’ with Dr. G

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

 
Apply now for Soroptimist service grants

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Storyteller relies on nature as his subject on Saturday

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

 
Vote for your favorites in Readers’ Choice poll

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

Learn nature photography from an expert

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4 | Gallery

 
Thorp receives UCD’s Distinguished Emeritus Award

By Kathy Keatley Garvey | From Page: A4 | Gallery

Innovation opportunities on the agenda

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

 
Apply now to be on Davis’ coop crawl

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

Seed swap set Friday at Davis Cemetery

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

 
VFW post plans Valentine’s Day Heroes Breakfast

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4 | Gallery

Sutter auxiliary seeks volunteers

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

 
A winemaker’s downfall

By New York Times News Service | From Page: A7

Gerber nominations open now

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A10

 
.

Forum

Wife’s attitude costs her friends

By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

 
Taking turns as the halfway house

By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

It’s foggy? Turn on your headlights

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

 
Damage done to democracy

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

A family was torn apart, but we survived

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6 | Gallery

 
Locals will join march for climate change

By Michelle Millet | From Page: A6

.

Sports

Anatomy of a hoops collapse: Can Aggie men handle the pressure?

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Four DHS wrestlers soar at McClellan Air Force Base

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

Aggie women almost get a sweep of Portland tennis teams

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
UCD women need to get in gear for a basketball road trip

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

UCD swims past Santa Barbara

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2 | Gallery

 
Sports briefs: Eat ribs for the Davis Aquadarts

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B8

.

Features

Name Droppers: Lea Rosenberg leads Odd Fellows

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

 
.

Arts

DHS Idol finals will be a tough competition

By Krystal Lau | From Page: A9

 
Wynonna Judd will perform Feb. 13 in Vacaville

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

 
‘Ideation’ a funny, dark, thrilling farce — and more

By Bev Sykes | From Page: A9 | Gallery

.

Business

.

Obituaries

Death notice: Lorraine Bernice DeGraff

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A2

 
.

Comics

Comics: Tuesday, January 27, 2015 (set 1)

By Creator | From Page: B5

 
Comics: Tuesday, January 27, 2015 (set 2)

By Creator | From Page: B7