The full list of cognitive biases is here
A cognitive bias is a tendency to think in the same way. Lawyers and Judges have to be very alert to the possibility of cognitive biases affecting their day to day work and judgment.
Reading through the list so many of the biases can impact.
Loss aversion bias might be part of the explanation for the dramatic drop in employment tribunal claims – the prospect of an immediate but temporary loss of £250.00 outweighs the prospect of future gains.
When summing up it is vital that some rhyme is injected into the submissions to ensure that the client potentially benefits from the Employment Judge having the keats heuristic cognitive bias.
When faced with a client carrying a lever arch full of papers detailing extensive grievances against his employer, the tendency you have to guard against is to think back to previous cases and then use them as a starting point for the one in front of you.
Every single case is different and unique and that should be the lawyer’s starting point.
Coming to a preliminary conclusion without having immersed and absorbed the detail can be dangerous as given the potential of confirmation bias a subsequent immersion into the detail may lead you to seize on evidence that supports the preliminary conclusion whilst eliding detail that does not support that conclusion.
Obviously when advising we need to be aware of the curse of knowledge bias which Solicitors and our friends at the bar sometimes suffer.
When negotiating we need to be aware of the anchoring effect which then sets the bar for the negotiation.
Looking through the lists of biases can you see any others which could impact the Employment lawyer’s day to day work? let us know in the comments.