TortsProf Blog

Editor: Christopher J. Robinette
Widener Commonwealth Law School

Monday, December 12, 2016

Gregory Keating Has Been Busy

Monday, October 31, 2016

Gifford Named Jacob A. France Professor of Torts at Maryland


Don Gifford was named the Jacob A. France Professor of Torts at the University of Maryland Carey School of Law on October 27, 2016. The title had been held by Oscar Gray until his retirement, and Oscar remains the Jacob A. France Professor of Torts Emeritus. Don delivered a lecture entitled "The Stubborn Survival of the Steam-Locomotive Compensation System in the Century of Driverless Cars." He argued that changes in technology and the impact of technological changes on the economy were the most important determinants of change in tort law. He then explored why there was so little change in the fundamental substantive principles of tort law during the twentieth century and why the tort system had generally prevailed over attempts to enact alternative compensation systems. 

October 31, 2016 in TortsProfs | Permalink | Comments (1)

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

October 18, 1926 the day Oscar Gray was born.  He celebrated his 90th birthday in Baltimore yesterday at a reception put on by his colleagues at the University of Maryland and the publishers of his treatise, Wolters Kluwer.  Happy birthday!


October 19, 2016 in TortsProfs | Permalink | Comments (1)

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Lester Brickman Retires from Cardozo

Lester Brickman, who has written in mass torts and contingent fee reform, is retiring from Cardozo, where he was a founding member of the faculty.  Cardozo's website has an announcement here.

(Via Olson/Overlawyered)

September 13, 2016 in TortsProfs | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Fleming Award in Torts Bestowed Upon Lewis Klar

University of Alberta Professor Lewis N. Klar is the 2016 recipient of the prestigious John G. Fleming Award in Torts, according to an announcement yesterday by UC Berkeley Law School. A giant in the world of Canadian tort law, Klar will deliver the fourth Fleming Lecture at Berkeley Law on Wednesday October 26, 2016 at 11:20 a.m. in room 105 of the law school. 

John Fleming was the 20th century’s leading scholar of comparative tort law, as perhaps befitting someone who was born in Germany, educated in England, served as a law dean in Australia and spent the bulk of his illustrious career at Berkeley.  Professor Fleming’s treatise on The Law of Torts, drawing on the common law of a wide range of countries, is currently in its 10th edition.  Fleming served for many years as the editor-in-chief of the Berkeley-based American Journal of Comparative Law.

Upon Professor Fleming’s death in 1997, the Fleming prize was created in his honor to be awarded bi-annually to an international scholar in tort law.  Professor Klar is the 10th winner of the prize.  Previous recipients include law professors Harold Luntz of Melbourne, Guido Calebresi of Yale, Stephen Todd of New Zealand’s UC Law, Basil Markesinis of Univ. College London, Robert Rabin of Stanford, Mike Green of Wake Forest Univ., Bill Powers of Texas, Helmut Koziol of Univ. of Vienna and Judge Allen Linden of Canada.  Linden will travel to Berkeley to present the Prize to Professor Klar.

More recently, owing to the generosity of the Fleming family and Joe and Cathy Feldman of Chicago, Berkeley Law created the Fleming Lecture, to be delivered by the Fleming Prize winner. Professor Klar’s lecture is titled “The Ebbs and Flows of Tort Law: Reflections on a Half Century of Tort Law.” The Fleming Lecture is open to the public. 

Professor Klar served as Dean of the Faculty of Law at the University of Alberta from 1997 to 2002. He was admitted to the Bar of the Province of Quebec in 1971 and the Law Society of Alberta in 2000. He was awarded a Queen’s Counsel in 2002, and received the Distinguished Service Award for his contribution to legal scholarship from the Law Society of Alberta and the Canadian Bar Association (Alberta) in 2005. In 2007, Professor Klar received the J. Gordin Kaplan Award for Excellence in Research from the University of Alberta. This is the university’s most senior and prestigious research award. In 2008, Professor Klar received the Hon. Tevie H. Miller Teaching Excellence Award from the Faculty of Law.

Professor Klar is the author of Tort Law, 5th edition, 2012, and a co-author of Canadian Tort Law: Cases, Notes & Materials, 14th edition, 2014. In recognition of Professor Klar’s contributions to tort law, a Special Edition of the Alberta Law Review has just been published in his honour. Professor Klar was a contributor to the 10th edition of Fleming’s The Law of Torts (2011) as well as to Torts Tomorrow: A Tribute to John Fleming (1998). Professor Klar is an elected member of the American Law Institute. His works have been cited hundreds of times by the courts in every province in Canada, including the Supreme Court of Canada.

September 8, 2016 in TortsProfs | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Ralph Brill Retires from Chicago-Kent

From Richard Wright:​
In a recent post to the Tortprof discussion list, my long-time colleague, Ralph Brill, announced the imminent closing of that discussion group, which he initiated and managed for many years, due to his pending retirement and the few postings on that list in recent years. I (and others) attempted to post responses regarding both the list and Ralph's accomplishments during his almost 60 years of teaching. However, the list was closed down immediately, so ​(I believe) ​neither my posting or any other posting went through. I appreciate being able to make this post on the Tortsprof blog to acknowledge Ralph's lifetime work and to suggest an alternative, much more active list for those previously enrolled in the Tortprof list.
Ralph's retirement from Chicago-Kent at the end of this academic year after almost 60 years of teaching Torts (and other courses) deserves widespread acknowledgement. However, it unfortunately is likely to be little noted, at least among Torts scholars, since Ralph has always devoted his efforts more practically to actual cases (for which he has filed many persuasive briefs) and, especially, teaching and dissemination of information to students and faculty where he works and worldwide. He is rightfully regarded among Legal Writing and Research professors as the leading innovator and champion of work in that area, having created long ago Chicago-Kent's three-year Legal Writing and Research program staffed by full-time faculty, which has since been copied in part or whole by almost all other law schools. His creation and management of the Tortprof discussion list is only a small indication of his efforts to facilitate dissemination of information to relevant audiences. We at Chicago-Kent receive several emails from Ralph every day with information about relevant developments in legal academia.
I have a personal debt to acknowledge. When I joined Chicago-Kent 30 years ago, Ralph likely was not one of my biggest supporters, given my more theoretical bent, although I have always insisted on theory being based on or at least taking into account actual practice, Yet he immediately welcomed me and took me under his wing. From the beginning of my time at Chicago-Kent, he has been my closest associate, professionally and personally. He has been my go-to person for any question about tort liability, in addition to providing me and other Torts professors at Chicago-Kent with information about recent cases and other developments. He has also been a role model for me in speaking up, however unpopular the view might be among the faculty generally, for actions that benefit our students rather than we faculty members.
I will greatly miss having Ralph always around at Chicago-Kent, but I hope to continue to benefit from his friendship and advice.
The Tortprof discussion list is gone.  As Ralph noted in his final post, this will not be a major loss, given the minimal use of Tortprof. For those of you who have not already done so, I encourage you to join the Obligations Discussion Group (, which is much more active and international, which discusses private law more generally but mostly Tort law. ​ Its members mainly are from the English Commonwealth, but it includes a substantial number of scholars from the USA and a small but growing number from civil law jurisdictions. To subscribe to the list, send an email to Professor Jason Neyers ( and include information about your academic or professional legal affiliation.​

August 30, 2016 in TortsProfs | Permalink | Comments (1)

Monday, August 29, 2016

Sugarman Wins Prosser Award


The AALS Section on Torts and Compensation Systems is pleased to announce that the recipient of the 2017 William L. Prosser Award is Stephen Sugarman, Roger J. Traynor Professor of Law at the University of California, Berkeley School of Law.

The Prosser Award recognizes outstanding contributions in scholarship, teaching and service related to tort law. Nominations are made by fellow tort scholars, and the recipient is selected by former Prosser Award winners and former chairs of the AALS Torts Section, with approval of the Torts Section Executive Committee. Professor Sugarman’s award, and his many contributions to tort law, will be recognized at the Torts Section meeting at the AALS Annual Meeting in San Francisco, at 1:30 pm on Friday, January 6th, 2017.

August 29, 2016 in TortsProfs | Permalink | Comments (1)

Monday, July 18, 2016

Most-Cited Torts/Products Liability Scholars (2010-2014)

Brian Leiter has posted the most-cited torts and products liability scholars in the period 2010-2014.  The data is drawn from a 2015 study led by Gregory Sisk.





Age in 2016


John C.P. Goldberg

Harvard University




Benjamin Zipursky

Fordham University




Tom Baker

University of Pennsylvania




Robert Rabin

Stanford University




Catherine Sharkey

New York University




Kenneth Abraham

University of Virginia




Anita Bernstein

Brooklyn Law School




Stephen Sugarman

University of California, Berkeley




David Rosenberg

Harvard University


73 (est.)


Michael Green

Wake Forest University




Other highly-cited scholars who work partly in these areas


Richard Epstein

New York University; University of Chicago




Steven Shavell

Harvard University




Saul Levmore

University of Chicago




Keith Hylton

Boston University



July 18, 2016 in Scholarship, TortsProfs | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

AALS Torts Section: Call for 2017 Newsletter Items and Prosser Award Nominations

Dear Colleagues,
I hope this email finds you well. 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. If you know of any works that should be included, please forward relevant citations and other information to me at The deadline for inclusion in this fall's newsletter is Friday, August 12, 2016. 
2.  2017 William L. Prosser Award
This is the first call for nominations for the 2017 William L. Prosser Award. The award recognizes “outstanding contributions of law teachers in scholarship, teaching and service” in torts and compensation systems. Recent recipients include Aaron Twerski, Mike Green, James Henderson, Jane Stapleton, Guido Calabresi, Robert Rabin, Richard Posner, 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. Living tort scholars and those who have passed away within the last five years are eligible for the award. 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 award will be presented at the annual AALS meeting in San Francisco in January 2017.   
Nominations must be accompanied by a brief supporting statement and should be submitted no later than Friday, July 15, 2016. Email submissions to are preferred. If you would rather mail hard copies of nomination materials, please mail them to Prof. Stacey Tovino, William S. Boyd School of Law, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, 4505 S. Maryland Parkway, Box 1003, Las Vegas, Nevada 89154.  
I 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.
Thank you and all the best,
~Stacey Tovino 

Stacey A. Tovino, JD, PhD
Lehman Professor of Law
Director, Health Law Program
William S. Boyd School of Law
University of Nevada, Las Vegas

(832) 289-6313

March 29, 2016 in Scholarship, TortsProfs | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Touro Seeks Visitor

From Dean Patty Salkin at Touro:

Visiting Professor
Touro Law Center

The Jacob D. Fuchsberg Law Center of Touro College invites applications for Visiting Professors to teach one or more of the following courses: Civil Procedure and Torts during the fall 2016 semester and Evidence the spring 2017 semester. Teaching experience in one or more of these three courses is required.  The Law Center will entertain expressions of interest for one semester and full-year appointments based on teaching experience and curricular needs.

Touro Law Center is a student-centered school conveniently across the street from the Eastern District of New York courthouse and is located only 45 miles from New York City in Suffolk County, Long Island, New York.  We seek candidates with a demonstrated commitment to excellence in teaching and mentoring students, as well as a willingness to engage in the intellectual academic life of the Law Center.

Touro Law is dedicated to the goal of diversity and strongly encourages applications from women and minorities.  Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.  Applications must include a resume and statement of interest and should be mailed to Professor Meredith R. Miller, Chair, Faculty Appointments Committee, at<>

March 24, 2016 in TortsProfs | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

NPL: Most-Cited Torts Articles of the Past 25 Years

At New Private Law, Ted Sichelman has compiled a list of the most-cited torts articles of the past 25 years.

March 9, 2016 in Scholarship, TortsProfs, Weblogs | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, February 1, 2016

Zipursky to Give 2016 Monsanto Lecture

On Thursday, Ben Zipursky will give the Monsanto Lecture at Valparaiso University.  His topic:  "Civil Recourse and Pragmatic Conceptualism in Tort Theory:  The Case of Online Defamation."  For more information or to RSVP, go here.

February 1, 2016 in Conferences, TortsProfs | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

AALS Torts Panel This Friday!

Don't forget the Torts and Compensation Systems Section Panel this Friday at 1:30:  "MacPherson at 100: Perspectives on its Influence and Meaning."  Aaron Twerski will receive the Prosser Award at the beginning of the presentation.

January 5, 2016 in Conferences, TortsProfs | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, December 17, 2015

A Conversation with Fordham's Torts Professors

The Fordham Law News just published a conversation among four torts professors:  Ben Zipursky, Howard Erichson, Michael Martin, and Jed Shugerman.  They answer questions about frivolous lawsuits, efficiency, insurance, and more.  Check it out here.

December 17, 2015 in TortsProfs | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

AALS Torts Section 2015 Newsletter

is here:  Download AALS Tort Section Newsletter 2015.  Thanks to my co-author Jessica Smeriglio.  We appreciate the assistance of Widener Commonwealth librarians Pat Fox and Ed Sonnenberg.

October 6, 2015 in Conferences, Scholarship, TortsProfs | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, September 27, 2015

American Museum of Tort Law Opens

Ralph Nader's American Museum of Tort Law opened yesterday in his home town of Winsted, Connecticut.  Among others, Andy Popper spoke at the ceremony.  The New Haven Register has coverage

September 27, 2015 in Conferences, Current Affairs, TortsProfs, Travel | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Brooklyn's Twerski to Receive Prosser Award


The AALS Torts & Compensation Systems Section has announced that Aaron Twerski (Brooklyn) will receive the 2016 Prosser Award.  From the announcement:

On behalf of the Torts and Compensation Systems Executive Committee, it gives me great pleasure to announce that the recipient of the 2016 William L. Prosser Award is Aaron Twerski of Brooklyn Law School. Through his work as Co-Reporter for the Restatement (Third) of Torts: Products Liability, his own scholarship, his contributions to multiple casebooks, his exemplary teaching, and his generosity toward other scholars, Aaron Twerski has made “outstanding contributions ... in scholarship, teaching and service” of the kind that the Prosser Award was designed to recognize. I hope you will join the Executive Committee in offering our congratulations.
The award will be presented at our section meeting at 1:30 pm on January 8, 2016, during the AALS annual conference at the New York Hilton in New York City. We hope to see many of you there.
Many thanks to all of you who took the time to submit such thoughtful nominations to our nominating committee. Many thanks, too, to that committee, consisting of Mike Green, James Henderson, and Andy Klein. And finally, once again, many congratulations to Aaron.

September 17, 2015 in TortsProfs | Permalink | Comments (1)

Friday, August 21, 2015

Ralph Nader Invites You to the Grand Opening of the American Museum of Tort Law

The American Museum of Tort Law in Winsted, Connecticut has the Convocation heralding its grand opening on September 26, 2015 and you are invited:  Download TortMuseumInvitation

August 21, 2015 in Current Affairs, TortsProfs | Permalink | Comments (1)

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Palmer on His Role in Compensation-Oriented Tort Reform

Sir Geoffrey Palmer QC has posted to SSRN the chapter of his 2013 memoir covering his role in various tort reforms, including New Zealand's move away from tort.  Entitled Big Change, Exciting Adventures: Accident Compensation, the abstract provides:

This comprises a chapter of the author’s 2013 memoir that was published by the Victoria University Press, Wellington, New Zealand. It concerns New Zealand’s novel accident compensation scheme that replaces tort law as a means of compensating the victims of accidents. It reviews the author’s involvement with the reform from its earliest days up until the present. It traces the difficulties with enacting the scheme, its administration and its financing. It also reviews efforts to take the reform to Australia where it was not enacted. It reflects upon the difficulties of securing general deterrence through the allocation of accident costs.

August 11, 2015 in TortsProfs | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, July 17, 2015

Jane Stapleton Elected to British Academy

Brian Leiter is reporting that Jane Stapleton has been elected a Corresponding Fellow of the British Academy.  Congratulations to Jane!

July 17, 2015 in TortsProfs | Permalink | Comments (0)