Regulation by Litigation


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Andrew P. Morriss, Bruce Yandle, and Andrew Dorchak

View Inside Format: Cloth
Price: $64.00
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Federal and state regulatory agencies are increasingly making use of litigation as a means of regulation. In this book, three experts in regulatory law and theory offer a systematic analysis of the use of litigation to impose substantive regulatory measures, including a public choice-based analysis of why agencies choose to litigate in some circumstances.


The book examines three major cases in which litigation was used to achieve regulatory ends: the EPA’s suit against heavy duty diesel engine manufacturers; asbestos and silica dust litigation by private attorneys; and private and state lawsuits against cigarette manufacturers. The authors argue that litigation is an inappropriate means for establishing substantive regulatory provisions, and they conclude by suggesting a variety of reforms to help curb today’s growing reliance on such practice.

Andrew P. Morriss is H. Ross and Helen Workman Professor of Law and Professor of Business, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, IL. He lives in Fisher, IL. Bruce Yandle is Alumni Distinguished Professor of Economics Emeritus, Clemson University. He lives in Clemson, SC. Andrew Dorchak is Head of Reference and Foreign/International Law Specialist, Case Western Reserve University School of Law Library. He lives in Cleveland, OH.



"A valuable, spirited book about how bureaucrats use litigation to avoid the constraints they face when they regulate the old-fashioned way, by formulating rules, that enriches our understanding of bureaucracy."—Jonathan Macey, Yale University

"This book invites lawyers to apply economics to the law and urges economists to analyze litigation's impact on the economy. The authors reveal the pernicious results of substituting litigation for sound public policy, providing a first step toward correcting a regulatory process gone awry."—Terry L. Anderson, Executive Director, The Property and Environment Research Center

"The authors’ winning combination of clear theory and illustrative case studies makes this book a necessary read for anyone who wishes to grapple with the negative synergies of two systems of social control, which can easily swamp any gains that either system alone could provide.”—Richard A. Epstein, James Parker Hall Distinguished Service Professor of Law, University of Chicago
ISBN: 9780300120028
Publication Date: December 9, 2008
296 pages, 6 1/8 x 9 1/4