The Associated Press reports today that there has been a sharp decline in jury verdicts. Forty years ago, eleven percent of federal civil cases went to verdict. Today it is under two percent. The report is undecided as to whether the decline in jury verdicts is a positive development. more ...>
My view is that the decline in jury verdicts is a positive development. The cost of litigating a case to trial is often staggering. For example, in a personal injury lawsuit, the cost of a doctor testifying as an expert witness is usually $5,000 in New York. Both plaintiff and defendant have to bear the burden of these costs. Additionally, it may take years for a case to be placed on the trial calendar.