Bringing Objectivity into Settlement Decisions

The Nexus of Law, Science, and Ethics in Litigation Risk Assessment

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Over the last several decades, refinements in psychological research methodology as applied to litigation risk assessment have led to increased validity and precision, making it possible to accurately forecast jury awards in many cases. Rigorous application of scientific research design principles has obviated the need to guess, or make hunches, in determining probable damages outcomes in litigation. The continuing lack of use of such scientific research tools raises ethical questions as to whether cases are being settled for amounts that diverge substantially from what an actual jury would do with the case.

In this article understand:

  • Research validity
  • Jury consulting evaluation criteria
  • Reasons for resistance to investing in valid research
  • Ethical questions surrounding the lack of use of scientific research

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