Friday, February 26, 2010

Yet More Media

It's been a big media week for Law Prof on the Loose. I was in a story on the local FOX news last night. You can see it here.

The story was about all the money DC is paying out in settlements in lawsuits over alleged police and other public misconduct. As usuall, the 5-second snippet of me consists of the most contentious thing I said. They show me saying that defendants are usually happy to string out cases and maybe wear down the plaintiff. Which is true, but my larger point was that defendants, without doing anything wrong or unethical, make decisions about what to do based on cost-benefit analysis. If setttling a case is cheaper than the expected cost of going forward to trial (and bearing in mind the effect on other cases of either course of action), a defendant will settle. There are lots of considerations, but the main one is figuring out the lowest cost course of action.

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