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Abstract

This article discusses the legal consequences of saying you are sorry, whether as an apology or an expression of sympathy. It discusses questions such as whether an apology is understood to be an admission of guilt, whether an apology fulfills any elements of a tort, how an apology can be useful for avoiding litigation, how an expression of sympathy should be worded to minimize the possibility that it could be misunderstood to be an admission of guilt, and why someone who is guilty of some error should apologize without concern that this would make their situation worse. It analyzes various apologies in the context of medical malpractice, attorney discipline, and correcting mistakes at trial.

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