Statistical information and lawsuit settlement in Mexico
In order to address a huge backlog of cases and low settlement rates, the President of Mexico City’s Labor Court asked researchers to construct a calculator that provides statistical information to parties and lawyers attending hearings during the course of their lawsuits. In a pilot evaluation funded by GPI, researchers built the calculator using a large database of concluded lawsuits from one subcourt and tested it in the same subcourt. Use of the calculator increased the settlement rate by over 90 percent for lawsuits approached on the same day as the scheduled hearing, and had larger impacts on lawsuits approached at earlier stages. As a result, the court President requested scaling up the calculator to first-time hearings in 5 of the 20 subcourts, as well as to the population of workers seeking legal advice on a firing before they find a lawyer and present a lawsuit. Professors Seira, Sadka, and Woodruff, along with J-PAL staff in Mexico, will provide technical support in the first phase of this scale-up. For more on the scale-up, see this news article from September 2016 and this evidence to policy case study.
*This project was funded under the Innovation in Government Initiative's predecessor initiative, the Government Partnerships Initiative (GPI). This scale-up was made possible by a previous GPI funded research.