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Tort law culture: image and reality

Lewis, Richard Kurt and Morris, Annette 2012. Tort law culture: image and reality. Journal of Law and Society 39 (4) , pp. 562-592. 10.1111/j.1467-6478.2012.00600.x

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This article highlights two contrasting images of tort. The first reflects the traditional portrayal of justice, depicting tort as an independent `natural' system of rules of universal application forming the foundation of a just society. The second is more recent and relates to the perceived development of a damaging compensation culture. Focusing on personal injury litigation, we show how these portrayals differ from the reality of tort. In practice it is heavily influenced by institutional arrangements: the importance of both welfare provision and liability insurance is highlighted, and the effects of a `no-win no-fee' claims market are examined. The operation of tort is very much affected by commercial interests and the economic demands of the institutions which surround it. Overall we conclude that the images of tort fail to reflect how the personal injury compensation system actually operates.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Law
Subjects: K Law > K Law (General)
K Law > KD England and Wales
Publisher: Blackwell Publishing
ISSN: 0263-323X
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 04:24

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