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Opinion
Cass R. Sunstein

Don't Underrate the Power of the Default Option

People suffer when a judge fails to understand a critical behavioral tool.
Opting out is not as simple as it seems.

Opting out is not as simple as it seems.

Photographer: Francis Joseph Dean/Corbis News/Getty Images

If Olympic medals were awarded for the most powerful tools in behavioral economics, what would win the gold?

The answer is clear: default rules, which decide what happens if people do nothing at all.