Category Archives: Products liability

Reed, Kennedy and Silva, ‘Responsibility, Autonomy and Accountability: Legal Liability for Machine Learning’

Abstract: This paper investigates the question of legal liability for the consequences of decisions made by machine learning technology rather than by humans, although we do not attempt a detailed analysis of the basis on which such liability might be imposed. This is a substantial task which would require far more space than is available […]

Luigi Franzoni, ‘Correlated Accidents’

Abstract: This paper investigates cases in which harms are statistically correlated. When parties are risk averse, correlation plays an important role in the choice between liability rules. Specifically, positively correlated harms favor a liability rule that spreads the risk over a multitude of parties, as in the negligence rule. Negatively correlated harms favor a liability […]

‘Faulty Facades and Product Liability’

“Although the paradigm case of a tort suit against a product manufacturer involves a claim of personal injury caused by the manufacturer’s allegedly defective product, there is a wealth of litigation concerning products whose defects do not pose a risk of personal injury. For example, currently progressing through the District Court of Minnesota is a […]

Norbert Reich, ‘Product Liability and Beyond: An Exercise in “Gap-Filling”’

Abstract: This article discusses the impact of product liability law on product safety regulation, with special reference to ‘medical devices’. Four aspects are highlighted in particular: first, a short reference to the experiences of and controversies in the United States on this subject; second, an analysis of the recent case law of the Court of […]

Kenneth Abraham, ‘Prosser’s The Fall of the Citadel

Abstract: William L Prosser’s The Fall of the Citadel (Strict Liability to the Consumer) was simultaneously an analysis of the dismantling of the barriers to the imposition of strict liability for product-related injuries, an account of the sudden adoption of this form of liability beginning in the early 1960s, and a record of Prosser’s own […]

Daughety and Reinganum, ‘Market Structure, Liability, and Product Safety’

Abstract: In this chapter we consider how models of imperfect competition, developed by scholars working in industrial organization, provide insight into an important area of law: products liability (that is, liability for harms and losses associated with goods and services sold via markets). Remarkably, traditional law and economics (L&E) analyses of products liability generally find […]

Catherine Sharkey, ‘The Remains of the Citadel (Economic Loss Rule in Products Cases)’

Abstract: Though its seeds may have been planted long before, the economic loss rule in products liability tort law emerged in full force at the very same moment as the doctrine of strict products liability in the mid-1960s. This moment, fueled by the fall of privity and the rise of implied warranty earlier in the […]

Andrzej Rapaczynski, ‘Driverless Cars and the Much Delayed Tort Law Revolution’

Abstract: The most striking development in the American tort law of the last century was the quick rise and fall of strict manufacturers’ liability for the huge social losses associated with the use of industrial products. The most important factor in this process has been the inability of the courts and academic commentators to develop […]

Baniak and Grajzl, ‘Optimal Liability When Consumers Mispredict Product Usage’

Abstract: We contrast alternative liability rules for social control of product risks when heterogeneous consumers considering purchasing a durable good due to cognitive errors and biases mispredict future product benefits and, thus, the extent of future product usage. Since the expected consumer harm directly depends on the level of product usage, the consequences of consumers’ […]

‘Justice Scalia’s Product Liability Legacy’

“Justice Antonin Scalia’s death has generated intense debate about his legacy and the future of the US Supreme Court. Scholars and practitioners alike remember Justice Scalia’s positions on social issues and his adherence to originalism and textualism. Justice Scalia’s legacy in the product liability context, however, shows a more nuanced jurist. His theories of constitutional […]