On the front of its Business Day section, the New York Times (8/8, C1, Glater) reports that a recent “study of civil lawsuits…has found that most of the plaintiffs who decided to pass up a settlement offer and went to trial ended up getting less money than if they had taken that offer.” Randall L. Kiser, a co-author of the study and principal analyst at DecisionSet, explained, “The lesson for plaintiffs is, in the vast majority of cases, they are perceiving the defendant’s offer to be half a loaf when in fact it is an entire loaf or more.” The study, to be published in the September issue of the Journal of Empirical Legal Studies, found that “[d]efendants made the wrong decision by proceeding to trial far less often, in 24 percent of cases, [while] plaintiffs were wrong in 61 percent of cases.” And in only “15 percent of cases, both sides were right to go to trial — meaning that the defendant paid less than the plaintiff had wanted but the plaintiff got more than the defendant had offered.”

Link: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/08/business/08law.html?_r=1&oref=slogin