Toward Eliminating Gender Bias in Personal Injury Awards: Contributions from Family Economics
AbstractThe legal system has been slow to recognize the value inherent in housework. This has resulted in gender bias in compensating victims of personal injuries for their reduced ability to perform household work. Although there has been significant progress in the legal system, several sources of undercompensation remain. The authors support the suggestion that significant progress can be achieved by reconceptualizing the loss as that of the capacity to do economically valuable work. Calculation of lost housekeeping capacity remains problematic as the courts tend to underestimate the amount of time individuals spend performing unpaid work. Further controversy involves the appropriate method for estimating the value of non-market work. Replacement cost methods are recommended. Such an approach will not eliminate gender bias as it merely reflects the gender bias in the market.
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