Insufficient Analysis of Insufficient Activity
A response to David Gilo & Ehud Guttel, Negligence and Insufficient Activity: The Missing Paradigm in Torts, 108 Mich L. Rev. 277 (2009). In Negligence and Insufficient Activity: The Missing Paradigm in Torts, David Gilo and Ehud Guttel argue that negligence law encourages inefficiently high and low levels of activity because negligence law ordinarily does not take activity levels into account. They suggest that the law should impose liability for failing to take safety precautions-even where precautions would not be cost-justified-whenever the threat of this liability negates the incentive for an actor to choose an insufficient level of activity. Until now, the literature on the interaction between liability standards and activity levels has failed to recognize the possibility of inefficiently insufficient activity. I commend Gilo and Guttel for both their insight and their explication of it.