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Asbestos litigation and search-engine optimization



A website owner plans to make a lot of money by renting out its well-situated domain names to asbestos plaintiffs' firms. The existence of the market demonstrates the effective cartelization of asbestos plaintiffs' practice: if asbestos firms competed on price, instead of consistently overcharging clients with riskless "contingency" fees, there would be no incentive for third parties to try to grab a share of the rent-seeking through the race to elbow one's way to the top of the search results for asbestos litigation websites. (See also the phenomenon of "chicken catchers" and "chicken pluckers.") Money that should end up in injured plaintiffs' pockets is instead finding its way into website-owners' pockets, via lawyers' excessive fees. I'm quoted in the LNL coverage. Earlier on POL.

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Isaac Gorodetski
Project Manager,
Center for Legal Policy at the
Manhattan Institute
igorodetski@manhattan-institute.org

Katherine Lazarski
Press Officer,
Manhattan Institute
klazarski@manhattan-institute.org

 

Published by the Manhattan Institute

The Manhattan Insitute's Center for Legal Policy.