Monday, January 30, 2006

North Carolina Law Review Publishes Article on Forum Shopping

The North Carolina Law Review has just published an interesting piece by Professor Debra Lyn Bassett entitled The Forum Game, 84 N. Car. L. Rev. 333 (2006), which discusses the legal framework and ethical rules surrounding forum shopping. Here is the abstract:

One of the more interesting contradictions in law is the common description of litigation as a "game," while simultaneously decrying "game playing" in the litigation process. Litigation involves strategic choice, as game theory illustrates. One of those strategic choices includes the plaintiff's initial selection of the forum, which the defendant may attempt to counter through transfer strategies of its own. Criticizing and trivializing forum selection through the label of forum "shopping" misapprehends the forum game by treating forum selection as a parlor trick--as unfair and abusive--rather than as a lawful, authorized strategy. Forum shopping is not a form of "cheating" by those who refuse to play by the rules. Playing by the rules includes the ability of plaintiff's counsel to select--and the ability of defendant's counsel to attempt to counter--the set of rules by which the litigation "game" will be played.


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