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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The theories in question therefore embody reasons for limiting the extent of legal responsibility. Sometimes it is not possible to be sure that in the absence of one of them the decision would have been different. Sign in Create an account. It should be remembered, however, that the search for a single criterion may be no more than a response to legal doctrine.

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

These uses of causation by historians, moralists and lawyers raise the question, adumbrated by Collingwood, of whether the attribution of responsibility requires a different conception of cause from that employed for causxtion or explanation.

Oxford University Press is a department of the University of Oxford. The NESS theory therefore has at most a narrow range of application. Civil War American History: Both inside and outside the law many actions are regarded as wrongful whether or not they cause tangible harm. Classical, Early, and Medieval Prose and Writers: Many legal inquiries are concerned to explain how some event or state of affairs came about, especially an untoward event such as death or a state of affairs such as insolvency.

Ebook This title is available as an ebook. But in law this does not solve the problem because, unless the agents are acting in concert, the responsibility of each agency has to be independently established. This thesis is criticized on the ground that what purport to be purely causal appraisals are hopelessly vulnerable to moral considerations, especially when such appraisals are presumed to take place in complete independence of scientific theory.


The failure of a doctor to prescribe an effective contraceptive cannot be held to be responsible for the death of the victim of a murder committed by the causatuon conceived as a result of the doctor’s negligence. Whether someone is liable to punishment or to pay compensation or is entitled to claim compensation often depends on showing whether the person potentially liable or entitled has caused harm of a sort that the law seeks to avoid.

Moore – – Oxford University Press. Thus, in some contexts only physical, not economic or psychological harm grounds a legal remedy. Social Dynamics Brian Skyrms. Must the cause be a necessary condition, a sufficient condition or a caudation member of a set of conditions that are together sufficient for the outcome?

Even when applied to a specific situation this involves considering what generally happens when certain conditions are present. One way of doing this is to ask what would be the fairest way of distributing the relevant social risks.

Causation in the Law

Publications Pages Publications Pages. Added to PP index Total downloads 50of 2, Recent downloads 6 months 2of 2, How can I increase my downloads? Even supposing that the alleged cause constitutes the right sort of condition of the outcome e. It is to attribute responsibility to an agent for those outcomes that his, her or its agency serves to explain and that can therefore plausibly be treated as part of hsrt agency’s impact on the world.

If these criteria are then applied in attributive hnoore, 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 second type of theory concerns questions of responsibility that would in the view of these causal minimalists be better addressed directly rather than by asking whether on the facts a causal relation existed between agency and harm.

It enables distinctions to be made according to the extent of contribution of a particular process to the outcome. Sign in to use this feature. The function of cause in relation to recipes and prediction points towards the NESS theory. From the Publisher via CrossRef no proxy dx. They advocate the view that in a specific situation a causally relevant condition is a necessary element of a set of conditions jointly sufficient for the harmful outcome.


But in law the third function is particularly salient and controversial. They argue that in these cases the agency, though a causally relevant condition, did not cause the outcome.

Instead of asking whether the mistaken treatment was so abnormal as not to be accounted a consequence of the motorist’s negligent driving it would, in the critics’ eyes, be better to ask whether the risk of medical mistreatment should be borne exclusively by the hospital authorities.

The Legacy of H.

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 honord element in legal responsibility. Thus, if an employer is responsible for cxusation caused by his or her employee to another person the employee may or may not also be legally responsible for that harm.

Classical, Early, and Medieval World History: Other Internet Resources Cwusation, R. There is no reason to suppose that the law, when it engages in explanatory inquiries, adopts different criteria of causation from those employed outside the law in the physical and social sciences and in everyday life. This chapter maintains that there is no satisfactory analysis of causation in non-causal terms in the huge philosophical literature on the topic.

Vernon Law Book Company, In a legal context, therefore, the link to be established must be framed in terms of a link between particular aspects of events.

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