lukegilman.com : The Blawgraphy
Life of a Law Student, University of Houston Law Center

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Please note: I'm no longer updating this particular blog, but keep it around for archival purposes. Visit me at the current blog at www.lukegilman.com

Lawyer on Lawyer Matrimony

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Over at the Volokh Conspiracy, Eugene Volokh takes note of the 1949 pic Adam’s Rib, starring Spencer Tracy and Kathryn Hepburn playing a married lawyer couple and jokingly surmises that there might now be a legal obligation for lawyers to marry other lawyers. I would assume such a rule would be for the sake of the non-lawyer, for whom being tied to someone who has been taught to ‘think like a lawyer’ could only amount to cruel and unusual punishment. Read the rest of this entry »

Empirical Study of Civil Bench and Jury Trials in State Courts from 1992-2005

Some interesting statistics on trials were released recently in DOJ, Bureau of Justice Statistics: Civil Bench and Jury Trials in State Courts, 2005. Some of the findings significantly undermine the popular mythology of large awards runaway juries that fueled tort reform.

  • In 2005 plaintiffs won in more than half (56%) of all general civil trials concluded in state courts. The plaintiff was significantly more likely to win in a bench trial compared to a jury trial. Among all plaintiff winners the median final award was $28,000. Approximately 4% of all plaintiff winners won $1,000,000 or more. Contract cases in general had higher median awards ($35,000) than tort cases ($24,000).
  • The total number of civil trials declined by over 50% from 1992 to 2005 in the nation’s 75 most populous counties. Tort cases decreased the least (40%) while real property (77%) and contract (63%) cases registered the largest declines.
  • In the nation’s 75 most populous counties, some tort case categories have seen marked increases in their median jury awards. This was particularly the case for product liability trials, where the median awards were about 5 times higher in 2005 than in 1992 and for medical malpractice trials, where the median jury awards more than doubled from $280,000 in 1992 to $682,000 in 2005.

‘IV the Amendment’ T-Shirts Available

Knowing when to milk a good idea, Mark Bennett has released the latest of his HCCLA ‘summer collection’ of amendment apparel, as aware of our constitutional rights as they are fashionable. Amendments are the new black. Available from Cafepress. I got mine.

Lest you think for a terrifying moment that you’re dyslexic and never knew it (as I just did), allow me to point out that the new items feature the IV (fourth) and not the VI (sixth) amendment, like the previous sticker.

C’mon, you know you want one. Everyone’s gonna have them.

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