Published on:

Rees Morrison’s Morsels #51 – additions to earlier posts

Myth of crisp decision-making. In his book, Theodore Levitt, Thinking about Management (Free Press 1991) at 25, Levitt writes that “in most business situations, decisions just happen. They are seldom made affirmatively or decisively. Mostly they emerge gradually from analyses, observations, comparisons, discussions and the passage of time.” (See my post of March 6, 2006 on six generic forms of decision-making.).

Annual “static costs” of litigation in the US: $328 billion per year. An op-ed piece in the Wall St. J., March 27, 2007 at A18, compiles what the authors believe are the total costs of America’s tort system. The authors, both at the Pacific Research Institute, describe first the “static costs” of tort litigation. These costs include “annual damage awards, plaintiff attorneys’ fees, defense costs, administrative costs and deadweight costs from torts such as product liability cases, medical malpractice litigation and class-action lawsuits.” (emphasis added) All of these amount to $328 billion per year. The book offering these figures is Lawrence J. McQuillan and Hovannes Abramyan, Jackpot Justice: the True Cost of America’s Tort System (Pacific Res. Inst. 2007).

Defense costs are outside counsel expenses of companies or their law departments. The $328 billion figure includes $39 billion of “first-party defense costs.”

International Association of Outsourcing Professionals (IAOP). The IAOP has a Legal Outsourcing Topic Chapter, chaired by Mark Ross, a UK attorney and Director of Business Development for Lawscribe, Inc.. The group will have quarterly meetings. To attend one, email Beryl Sorensen (See my post of June 11, 2007 and references cited.).