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Summers v. Tice revisited

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Kyle Graham looks at the historical record of the classic court case of Summers v. Tice, and, with his characteristic humor, finds the factual result to be the sort of travesty we've come to expect from the California state courts, with the evidence more than preponderantly pointing to Simonson, rather than Tice.

To which we can add my commentary. In the pre-jackpot-justice days of 1948 when damages for a lost eye and pain and suffering are $10,000 (about $95,000 in 2012 dollars), the sorts of errors that the justice system makes are a lot less important. But when the sums at stake in tort cases are so small, it's hard to justify today's attorney's fees and salaries on both the plaintiffs' and defense sides (not to mention the tuitions charged by the legal academy), so we can see why there's so much resistance to ending jackpot justice.

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Rafael Mangual
Project Manager,
Legal Policy

Manhattan Institute


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