Scott Dodson is a distinguished professor of law at UC Law San Francisco. He’s an expert in civil procedure and the director of the Center for Litigation and the Courts at UC Law SF. Scott shared several benefits of our civil justice system that we rarely consider. For instance, it provides a method of compensating for harm caused and deters future harm. It shifts the burden of managing harm from government agencies to private plaintiffs, which allows for smaller government. Civil litigation also has an equalizing and democratic nature, and the process of litigation forces disclosures and transparency in ways no other institution can.
But a justice gap exists between those who can afford legal representation and those who cannot. Scott discussed whether the benefits of our justice system outweigh its costs, which are significant for both plaintiffs and defendants. Certainly one of the costs, according to Scott, is the lack of democratic accountability, but the system is workable overall.
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