The uneasy case of multiple injurers' liability

Ehud Guttel*, Shmuel Leshem

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

When harm is caused by multiple injurers, damages are allocated among the responsible injurers in proportion to their relative responsibility for harm. This Article shows that a proportional allocation of liability between strictly-liable injurers distorts incentives to take precautions. The effects of this distortion depend on the nature of the injurers' precautions. If precautions are complements, injurers compete for lower liability shares, which results in excessive care-taking. If precautions are substitutes, injurers are afflicted by moral hazard, which gives rise to insufficient care-taking. By illuminating injurers' strategic incentives, this Article highlights a tension between equity and efficiency under a proportional allocation of liability.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)261-292
Number of pages32
JournalTheoretical Inquiries in Law
Volume15
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2014

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 by Walter de Gruyter Berlin/Boston.

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