Compensation for Mass Private Delicts

Evolving Roles of Administrative, Criminal, and Tort Law

In this essay, the Honorable Judge Weinstein explores the \\"evolving role of administrative, criminal and tort law in compensating victims and deterring mass delicts.\\" This essay, originally delivered as part of the Paul M. Van Arsdell Lecture, at the University of Illinois College of Law, begins by discussing the evolution of these three models in compensating victims of mass torts, and how recent developments have led these three models to overlap. Administrative law is primarily designed to prevent mass torts through regulation. Changes in discovery rules, as well as long-arm statutes, among other factors, have begun to favor \\"those seeking private remedies in the courts.\\" The evolution of criminal law beyond the protection of the public can be seen through the increased use of fines and forfeitures in criminal proceedings, although this trend has the effect of reducing the amount available to pay victims restitution. In part III, Judge Weinstein provides recent examples of this trend towards overlap in federal district court as well as in administrative law. Parts IV and V describe the effects that increased use of criminal and administrative law in compensating victims of mass delicts, the trend towards limiting recovery in tort law, and the costs and benefits of these developments. He concludes by positing that tort law still plays a vital role in compensating victims of mass delicts. Finally, in part IV, Judge Weinstein suggests that tort law could be better integrated into the three model system, and how such an integrated administrative-criminal-tort system could help reduce duplicative litigation.*Senior Judge, Eastern District of New York

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