Perspective and procedural justice: Attorney and litigant evaluations of court procedures
A comparison of the procedural justice judgments of attorneys and those of lay people judging the same procedures offers an opportunity to generate new information on what factors affect judgments of fairness. In a survey of reactions to conventional and innovative procedures in a United States district court, attorneys and lay people involved in tort and contract cases were asked to judge the overall fairness of court procedures and the fairness of specific procedures used in arbitration hearings. The respondents were also asked for their judgments concerning the favorability of the procedure's outcome, the opportunity to have the case heard and decided by an impartial third party, and their side's control over what happened in the case, all of which are factors found in previous studies to affect procedural fairness judgments. The results showed that, while attorneys gave higher overall fairness ratings than did litigants, the difference was not affected by the procedure assigned to the case. In addition, attorneys and litigants appeared to use the same standards to evaluate the fairness of procedures, although they disagreed about where the procedures they experienced fell on these dimensions. The theoretical and practical implications of the results are discussed. © 1990 Plenum Publishing Corporation.
Lind, EA; Ambrose, M; Park, MDV; Kulik, CT
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