TortsProf Blog

Editor: Christopher J. Robinette
Widener Commonwealth Law School

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Journal of European Tort Law Publishes Latest Issue

Journal of European Tort Law, vol 4 issue 1 (2013) (available here)


Duncan Fairgrieve, Geraint Howells and Marcus Pilgerstorfer ‘The Product Liability Directive: Time to get Soft?’ (2013) 4 JETL 1 

Hugo A Acciarri and Nuno Garoupa ‘On the Judicial Interest Rate: Towards a Law and Economic Theory’ (2013) 4 JETL 34 

Paula Giliker ’Tony Weir and the Law of Tort (2013) 4 JETL 63

Philippe Brun and Christophe Quézel-Ambrunaz ‘French Tort Law Facing Reform’ (2013) 4 JETL 78

Book Reviews:

Ina Ebert ‘Lotte Meurkens/Emily Nordin (eds), The Power of Punitive Damages. Is Europe Missing Out?’ (2013) 4 JETL 95

Daniel Gardner ‘Jacques De Mol, Le dommage psychique – Du traumatisme à l’expertise’ (2013) 4 JETL 98 

Piotr Machnikowski ‘Pekka Aalto, Public Liability in EU Law: Brasserie, Bergaderm and Beyond’ (2013) 4 JETL 101 

Ulrich Magnus ’Marten Breuer, Staatshaftung für judikatives Unrecht. Eine Untersuchung zum deutschen Recht, zum Europa- und Völkerrecht’ (2013) 4 JETL 106

Ugo Mattei ’M Infantino, La causalità nel diritto della responsabilità extracontrattuale. Studio di diritto comparato’ (2013) 4 JETL 110 

Andrew Tettenborn ’B Winiger/H Koziol/B Koch/R Zimmermann (eds), Digest of European Tort Law, Vol 2: Essential Cases on Damage’ (2013) 4 JETL 113

Thanks to Ken Oliphant for the tip.


April 20, 2013 in Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, April 19, 2013

John Hochfelder: "Recovering Millions of Dollars in Damages for Pain and Suffering in New York Traumatic Injury Lawsuits – Too Much? Runaway Justice?"

We often hear in New York complaints that it’s too easy to recover too much money in tort suits. We hear of fraudulent claims, trumped up lawsuits, overly generous juries and the like, all of which can result in a civil justice system that rewards unworthy claimants with pain and suffering awards way out of proportion to their actual injuries. In this article, we take a look at a representative sampling of recent cases that have yielded large recoveries and leave it to you, the reader, to decide whether justice has been done.

Generally, the amount of damages awarded for personal injuries is a question for the jury. In New York, the judgment of a jury is entitled to great deference; however, where the verdict amount is thought to be excessive or inadequate, a party may appeal under CPLR 5501.

Under the statute, the appellate court determines that an award is excessive or inadequate if it deviates materially from what would be reasonable compensation. In doing so, the courts are required to review other cases with the same or similar injuries to determine the amount that is “reasonable compensation” in the State of New York.

The figures one reads about in newspapers are usually verdict amounts. Appellate resolutions usually take a year or two and are mostly under-reported in the press.

So let’s take a look at several appellate court cases in New York to see what amounts are approved for pain and suffering damages for various types of injuries:

Continue reading

April 19, 2013 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Tomorrow's Guest Blogger: John Hochfelder

JMH NewerPhoto

John M. Hochfelder is a traumatic injury trial lawyer in the New York City metropolitan area and Hudson Valley region. His career began as a law clerk to a federal judge in the U.S. District Court  (S.D.N.Y.) after which he was a commercial litigator in a large Manhattan law firm. He's been a local court judge, an EMT and now, in addition to his personal injury law practice he publishes the widely read and acclaimed New York Injury Cases Blog where Mr. Hochfelder reports on and analyzes all New York appellate cases that rule on damages.

April 18, 2013 in Guest Blogger | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

AALS Torts Section: Newsletter Information/Prosser Award Nominations

From Tony Sebok:

Dear Colleagues,

Greetings!  In my capacity as secretary of the AALS Torts & Compensation Systems section, I am writing to pass along two important notices.

1. Torts and Compensation Section Newsletter

As most of you know, our section publishes a newsletter each fall listing: (1) Symposia related to tort law; (2) recent law review articles on tort law; (3) selected articles from Commonwealth countries on tort law; and (4) books relating to tort law.  We are now beginning the process of compiling material for this year's newsletter.  If you know of anything that should be included, please forward relevant citations and other information to me at  The deadline for inclusion is September 1, 2013.  

2.  Prosser Award

This is the first call for nominations for the 2014 William L. Prosser Award.  The award "recognize[s] outstanding contributions of law teachers in scholarship, teaching and service in ... torts and compensation systems ... ."   Recent recipients are Jane Stapleton, Robert Rabin, Richard Posner, Guido Calabresi, Oscar Gray, and Dan Dobbs.  Past recipients include scholars such as Leon Green, Wex Malone, and John Wade.

Any law professor is eligible to nominate another law professor for the award.  Nominators can renew past nominations by resubmitting materials.  Selection of the recipient will be made by members of the Executive Committee of the Torts & Compensation Systems section, based on the recommendation of a special selection committee.  The announcement of the award will be made at the annual AALS meeting in January, 2014.   

Nominations must be accompanied by a brief supporting statement and should be submitted no later than July 9, 2013.   E-mail submissions to are preferred.   If you would rather mail hard copies of nomination materials, please use the address in the signature line below.  
Our committee will send additional reminders about both the newsletter and the Prosser Award as the deadlines approach.  In the meantime, feel free to contact me if you have any questions.



April 17, 2013 in TortsProfs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

JOTWELL Torts: Hylton on Lobbying and Restatements

Keith Hylton (Boston University) reviews Laposata, Barnes, & Glantz's Tobacco Industry Influence on the American Law Institute's Restatements of Torts and Implications for Its Conflicts of Interest Policies over at JOTWELL.


April 16, 2013 in Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)