Law Faculty Articles and Research

Cautionary Lessons from American Securities Arbitration: Litigation versus Arbitration

Ronald D. Rotunda, Chapman University

This article was originally published in Arbitration International in 1989.


In the United States, it is now quite common for lawyers and others to bemoan what is often referred to as 'the litigation crisis. ' No less an authority than former Chief Justice Warren Burger has long complained that American courts 'have become overburdened' by too may lawsuits... Similarly, the Report of the prestigious American Bar Association's Commission on Professionalism recommends expanded use of arbitration in lieu of a norrnal trial before a judge and lay jury. There should be no rush to judgment favouring arbitration. In the first place, it is not at all clear that there is a litigation crisis in the United States.