U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

NCJRS Virtual Library

The Virtual Library houses over 235,000 criminal justice resources, including all known OJP works.
Click here to search the NCJRS Virtual Library

Coercion and Consent: A Tale of Two Court Reforms

NCJ Number
Law and Policy Volume: 10 Issue: 1 Dated: (January 1988) Pages: 3-24
C A McEwen; R J Maiman
Date Published
22 pages
The State courts in Maine have improved compliance with small claims judgments through two distinct reforms: an automatic disclosure process and a court-based mediation program.
The first of these survived only briefly but the second is well institutionalized. Automatic disclosure was a procedure that facilitated the collection of judgments by prevailing parties, and despite its success, was shortlived because it created an administrative burden and added costs. Mediation, however, removed cases from small claims courts, cost little, and may have speeded up the dockets in some jurisdictions. After showing the similar effects on compliance rates of these two reforms, it was concluded that contrasting fortunes of mediation and automatic disclosure can be attributed to their different effects on the costs and work life of courts as organizations and can be further understood in terms of their impact on the court as an institution with fragile authority. 4 tables, 12 notes, and 18 references. (Author abstract modified)


No download available