German view of US tort law/Deutsche Ansichten über Recht der USA

The German-American Law Journal blog links to an old findlaw article by Anthony J. Sebok on How Germany Views U.S. Tort Law.

bq. From conversations with German friends and from reading the German press, I had always suspected Germany’s view of the U.S. tort system was conflicted, to say the least. But this impression was driven home to me this summer, when I taught German law students a basic first year course in torts, the same course I teach in New York City.

Two things in the article struck me from the British point of view: the British don’t know the Socratic method any more than the Germans do, and the English have a book, Kemp & Kemp on Quantum of Damages, not exactly like German Tabellen, but indicating the kind of awards that judges have been making.

There are some excellent points in the article. The conclusion is a bit oversimplified. I think it’s true that most European nations do not share the U.S. political culture, but nevertheless their tort law can take a variety of forms.

Meanwhile, the ABA Journal has some interesting articles online, including one called Vive les Class Actions (shouldn’t that be Vivent…?): Europe Is Showing More Interest in Legal Mechanisms That Have Come Under Fire in the United States

Points discussed include class actions, plea bargaining and antitrust (restrictive practices) suits.

Here’s an article in German on class actions – I know I saw one recently, but this is from 2004: Gibt es Sammelklagen in Deutschland?

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