The Performance of the Italian Civil Justice System: An Empirical Assessment

by Remo Caponi 

The unreasonable length of Italian civil proceedings goes on filling pages of newspapers and magazines. According to some authoritative views, the inefficiency of the civil justice system helps explain why the Italian model of legislation and scholarship in civil procedure is not as influential on the European scene as it was in the past. Interestingly enough, a nearly diametrically opposed thesis has also been advanced, according to which the Italian procedural law and mainstream scholarship in civil procedure lack a clear, up-to-date, principle-oriented and comprehensive approach towards problems and challenges that contemporary civil justice systems face today. Such an outdated and overly complicated approach might contribute to the inefficiency of the Italian system of civil justice. The Italian Law Journal, which aims to both spread knowledge (and criticism) of the Italian legal system and foster international debate among lawyers of different traditions, may be an appropriate venue for deepening our understanding of the current performance of the Italian civil justice system. It may, in particular, assist us in ascertaining the major causes for its inefficiencies, with a view to assessing (in a subsequent article) whether the prevailing way of thinking of legal scholars may, in the end, exacerbate the relevant problems. 

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