Reverse Bifurcation


Reverse bifurcation is a trial procedure in which the jury determines damages first, before determining liability. The liability phase of the trial rarely occurs, because the parties usually settle once they know the value of the case. This procedure is already being used in thousands of cases – nearly all the asbestos and Fen-phen cases – but this is the first academic article devoted to the subject. This article explains the history of the procedure and analyzes why it encourages settlements, simplifies jury instructions, and produces better outcomes for the parties.


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Date of this Version

March 2006