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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In law the main grounds of responsibility for harm are therefore i an agent’s personal responsibility for causing harm and ii a person’s responsibility arising from the fact that he, she or it bears the risk of having to answer in legal proceedings for the harm in question. Subscriber Login Email Address. If these criteria are then applied in attributive causationn, an agency will not be regarded as the cause of an outcome when that outcome is explained by a later abnormal action or conjunction of events or a deliberate intervention designed to bring it about.

The inquiry will be, for example, into what was necessary or sufficient to cause a particular person’s death on a given occasion, hatr what are in general the necessary and sufficient conditions of death. If it would not have occurred in the absence of the agency the agency will be a causally relevant condition or, if one endorses causal minimalism, a cause-in-fact of the harm.

Publications Pages Publications Pages. Legal Studies8 Causation in the Law in Philosophy of Law. Print Save Cite Email Share. Responsibility is excluded in relation to an outcome the probability of which was not substantially increased by the agency in question. It is inevitably a matter of policy which base to choose, and whether to include information not known or not available to the agent bart he or she or it acted. Causation Outside the Law.


The reasons adduced for limiting responsibility are however differently viewed by different theorists.

Must the cause be a necessary condition, a sufficient condition or a necessary member of a set of conditions that are together sufficient for the outcome? It also fits the rule that in most legal contexts an agency, in order to be responsible for the whole of the harm that ensues, need only be shown to be one of the causes of harm, not the sole cause.

It needs to be stressed that the grounds for limiting responsibility will not necessarily be the same in every branch of the law. Please, subscribe or login to access full text content. The entry covers the nature and functions of causation, the relation between causation and legal responsibility, and the criteria for the existence of causal connection in law.

Causation in the Law

Historians and moralists, for example, assess the responsibility of agents for the outcomes, political, social, economic or military of what they did or failed to do.

Classical, Early, and Medieval Poetry and Poets: If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your hary. In the legal theory of causation this problem is of central importance. The theories about the specific qualities that an agency must possess in relation to the outcome in order to be its cause in law are in Anglo-American law often grouped under this rubric, though many other terms e. But in law the third function is particularly salient and controversial.

To purchase, visit your preferred ebook provider. The second type of theory concerns the criteria for determining the limits of legal responsibility for causing harm. To cause harm to another is also not a sufficient condition of legal responsibility, even in the eyes of those, such as the early Epstein, who would in general favour making agents strictly liable for the harm they cause.

Causation in the Law. In practice legislators and judges have seldom abandoned the traditional causal terminology in discussing the second issue, but the proposal to do so has been repeatedly revived.


From the Publisher via CrossRef no proxy dx. Griffin on Human Rights Roger Crisp. An Essay in Law, Morals, and Metaphysics. The fencing requirement was not designed to reduce noise, even though a proper barrier would have reduced the noise to such an extent as to avoid the psychological trauma.

But whereas historians may aim to assess the outcome of an agent’s conduct over a period or even a lifetime, law focuses on the harmful outcomes of particular actions. So far as the incidence of responsibility is concerned, while in law the relevant causes may be human or animal behaviour or natural events or processes, legal responsibility attaches in modern law only to natural persons human beings and juristic persons such as states, corporations and other institutions to which personality is ascribed in law.

It furthers the University’s objective of excellence in research, scholarship, and education by publishing worldwide. Nature and Functions of Causation 2.

Causation in the Law – Oxford Scholarship

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.

Being Realistic about Reasons T. Some focus on the type of condition that the alleged cause must constitute in thr to the alleged consequence. An action of this sort has been described as voluntary in a broad, Aristotelian sense, a use that has attracted criticism.

There are problems about settling whether only the type of harm or the specific harm must be unforeseeable, and the moment at which foreseeability is to be judged.

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