The Costs of Accidents: A Legal and Economic Analysis by Guido Calabresi is a work in the law and economics tradition because it provides an economic efficiency analysis of the rules of tort law. The text was initially published in by Yale University Press. For expenditures to prevent accidents, there must be associated levels of expected accidents and expected losses. Unfortunately, there is a serious underregistration of the most common accidents that have only a small cost per accident but may be important in the total cost of accidents. Only few studies have accurately quantified the entire cost of accidents. If the goal is to minimize the total costs of accidents, the costs of precaution should be included.

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Learn more about the actions Yale University Press is taking. Skip to main content. A Legal and Economic Analysis. Description Reviews. Accident law is currently under review throughout the United States, and indeed the world, as present systems prove increasingly inadequate to handle the mounting costs of automobile accidents. In this pioneering work, Guido Calabresi develops a framework for evaluating different systems of accident law. Defining the goal of accident law as the maximum reduction of accident and accident avoidance costs that can be achieved fairly, he examines ten political and economic choices implied in various approaches to reducing these costs.

Calabresi then considers two fundamental problems all systems of accident law must face: who should be held responsible for accident costs, and how should they be valued? He analyzes the fault-insurance system now widely used and finds it wanting on grounds both of cost reduction objectives and fairness. In conclusion, he discusses recent proposals for reform of the law, points out questions they raise, and ends by indicating the two he thinks most likely to prevail and the fundamental conflict between them.

The methodology and underlying principles extend far beyond the particular subject matter of accident law to many other legal areas that could benefit from economic analysis. In turn, some economic analyses may become the richer for the discussion in this book. It is truly one of those rare important volumes. Also of Interest More from this Author. Thomas O. David Schoenbrod. White-Collar Offenders in the Federal Courts. Mirjan R. Essays in Reform and Recollection.

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The Cost of Accidents




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