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Causation in the Law. H. L. A. Hart and Tony Honoré. Abstract. This text is an updated and extended second edition supporting the findings of its well-known. This chapter maintains that there is no satisfactory analysis of causation in non- causal terms in the huge philosophical literature on the topic. It concludes that. Criteria for the Existence of Causal Connection in Law .. Hart, H.L.A., and Tony Honoré, Causation in the Law, 2nd ed., Oxford: Clarendon.

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No rule is intended to give a remedy for every conceivable type of harm or loss. Did one action, event, process or state of affairs event for short cause another? Even this has been questioned by Malone, who has pointed to the incorporation of normative considerations in the rules for proving cause-in-fact in civil law. Open access to the SEP is made possible by a world-wide funding initiative. Mill’s notion of a jointly sufficient set of conditions. At least on the basis of information available at the time, the probability of being killed in an air crash was not substantially increased by the delay.

The chief grounds proposed are that responsibility is limited i when a later intervention of a certain type is a condition of the harmful outcome ii when the agency has not substantially increased the probability of the harmful outcome that in fact supervenes and iii when the causal link involves a series of steps and ultimately peters out, so that the outcome is too remotely connected with the alleged cause. NESS supporters therefore appeal to the idea that particular causal links are instances of cajsation about the way in which events are connected.

The phenomenon of multiple causes, which have often to be weighed against one another, points to a quantitative theory.

The importance of these questions is that responsibility in law very often depends on showing that a specific action or event or state of affairs has caused specific harm or loss to another. This responsibility is then attributed to an agent or, metaphorically, to the other event or state of affairs in question e. The obstructer is then the adequate cause of the injury. But even in such a case it is a matter of legal policy which types of harm are to be compensated or to lead to criminal liability.


Their application presents not a question of fact, not even of what is socially regarded as a fact Lucybut a decision, often controversial, to impose or restrict liability.

Causation in the Law – H. L. A. Hart, Tony Honoré – Google Books

It is not a necessary condition for two reasons. VI The Law of Tort: Criteria for the Existence of Causal Connection in Law The theories concerning the criteria for the existence of causal connection in law fall into two classes.

Hhe and Functions tue Causation Law is concerned with the application of causal ideas, embodied in acusation language of statutes and decisions, to particular situations. Whether complicity in the agency of another can be regarded as causal or analogous has been denied Moore but defended Gardner. The most persuasive explanations of an outcome are those that point to a condition that is abnormal or unexpected in the context or to a deliberate action designed to bring the outcome causatioh.

Suppose, for example, that in the example given a passer-by deliberately threw the claimant into the canal. The basic questions dealt with in this entry are: History of Western Philosophy.

Don’t have an account? Publications Pages Publications Pages. Causation in the Law in Philosophy of Law. The relationship between causing harm and legal responsibility is however complex.

But foreseeability, though it bears some relation to probability, is clearly a non-causal criterion, and one that can apply only to human conduct, not to other alleged causes. The Ant Trap Brian Epstein.

Causation in the Law

The theory also hatt on Mackie’s idea, in the context of causal generalisations, of an INUS condition insufficient but non-redundant part of an unnecessary but sufficient condition. They propose grounds of limitation that reflect the causal judgements that would be made outside the law.

For a person to be legally responsible for causing harm to another requires, apart from a number of conditions relating to jurisdiction, procedure and proof, that the conduct should be of the sort that the law designates as unlawful e. Science Logic and Mathematics. The Nightmare and the Noble Dream: This involves, first, a conception of what a cause is outside the law. The notion that causal connection between agency and harm must be established is however often implied even when the word is not used.


Sign in to use this feature. The second type of theory concerns the criteria for determining the limits of legal responsibility for causing harm. Is the risk of falling into the canal different from the risk of being pushed into it?

There are however cases in which the but-for test is difficult to reconcile with our intuitive judgements of responsibility. This theory, long orthodox in German civil law, but increasingly supplemented by policy-oriented criteria, is intuitively attractive when the agent wrongfully exposes someone to a risk of harm to which they would not otherwise be exposed. For example, all systems of law hold that a person can be guilty of homicide only if he or she has caused another’s death.

The complexities concern the incidence of responsibility, the grounds of responsibility, the items between which causal connection must be demonstrated, and the variety of relationships that can in some sense be regarded as causal.

This chapter maintains that there is no satisfactory analysis of causation in non-causal terms in the huge philosophical literature on the topic. This new edition of the seminal work retains the original analysis of commonsense causal concepts, and includes hundreds of new decisions and a substantial preface in which criticisms are met and a rationale propounded for common-sense causal notions as an element in legal responsibility.

It needs to be stressed that the grounds for limiting responsibility will not necessarily be the same in every branch of the law.