“…You don’t pay £100,000 to a lawyer unless you care about something”. The role of emotion in contract law

Jones, Emma (2019). “…You don’t pay £100,000 to a lawyer unless you care about something”. The role of emotion in contract law. In: Bandes, Susan; Temple, Kathryn; Kidd White, Emily and Madeira, Jody eds. Research Handbook of Law and Emotion. Edward Elgar.

Abstract

This chapter will explore the role of emotion within both the theory and practice of contract law, with a particular focus on commercial contracting. Despite the prevalence of contractual relations in both daily and business life, the underlying assumption is often that emotion is absent or simply irrelevant. The chapter will build on the insights of law and emotion scholarship on the importance of emotion and consider the treatment of emotion within different models of contract law theory. It will also discuss empirical evidence on the role of emotion within commercial legal practice. Overall, this chapter will argue that emotion is an integral part of contractual transactions. It should therefore be explicitly acknowledged and explored, rather than remaining an implicit presence within contract law.

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