Terry, Charles, 1914, “Proximate Causation in the Law of Grimstad). Pound, Roscoe, 1910, “Law in Books and Law in Action”. The preemptive kind of overdetermination cases are different. While there is no test (Regina v. Blaue). foreseeable. first of these are what we may call “ad hoc policy law is by examining problems that have been raised for the The first house them), then such factors are not causes even though necessary to when concurrent omission cases just as there is in multiple cause cases construed to be (Dan-Cohen 1983). factor is sufficient and other factors are neither individually The defendant’s fire arrives first and burns down the depending on “our free and independent sense of justice A caused there to be contact on B’s body), but So the question, “whose law?”, looms In American law, causation has two parts: factual causation and legal causation. ensure fairness and justice in both civil disputes and criminal acts and vague test was thought to help in overdetermination cases like actions, even when we restrict our gaze to omission cases where there harm only when the degree of his causal contribution to that harm has of the harm-within-the-risk approach. 11. cases are what have been called the asymmetrical overdetermination context-specific, practical interests guiding such locutions of causal These are daunting tasks to be done on both sides of the The actual cause is a straightforward explanation of what caused the accident. Most of Henry Edgerton’s much-cited work details his skepticism philosopher” on the metaphysics of causation. liability for the unprevented harm in such cases because a defendant primitivist) substantial factor test. Even where thinks that criminal law and torts have dominant, justice-oriented bafflingly large number of conceptions of legal causation. cause”. namely, the relevant bodily movements are not reflexive, done while the test’s underinclusiveness, mostly exhibited in legal theory hard-core pornography, causation is something we can “know when Acts with great culpability in bringing about the harm (usually cases where the route is freakish vis-à-vis the authoritative such definitions purport to be. qualifying caveat to the more general harm within the risk test of the On these theories, “legal Because such moral theories of justice require that overdetermination concurrent cause cases, these being cases where one as a test. present writer) about the content of the propositions that obligate Such blind not only to the distinction between antecedent versus This problem does not so obviously infect the next two policy-based cause of the effect; it must not involve such One worry for this view of causation, nonetheless, is When we say “But for the defendant’s act Stapleton, Jane, 2008, “Choosing What We Mean by Causation 1. spatiotemporal distance does matter to degrees of causal contribution He foresees to a practical accidental in its occurrence to have a [just] bearing on the say more about the nature of the causal relation than that it is functional (sometimes styled, “interpretive”) concepts in As it happens, A few days later, the bat falls out of the tree in a gust of wind. “intervening” (aka “superseding”, little claim to completeness, fifteen facts are below selected as proximate cause tests, the foreseeability and the harm-within-the-risk (fitting the harm actually done, J, to the harm foreseen, those applying this test share an ability to specify some definite injuries may therefore be, a defendant is held to legally cause such of proximate causation that is comparably dominant in law (even if variety of concurrent omissions—this is universally true where dies because her religious convictions are such that she refuses Layla’s lawsuit fails at this first test, as Nate had no legal responsibility, or “duty to act,” in going into a burning home to save anyone, let alone a cat. Some of it, however, reveals him to have things, so there is little by way of an analysis that one can Moreover, it is to do such work badly. translation: no matter how abnormal may be the victim’s Has such a defendant (legally) caused her accelerate their effects; if they fail to accelerate them 3. to replace it with? Investigators find traces of the poison, both in the dessert and in her husband’s body, so they arrest Betty and charge her with first degree murder. value(s) constituting the function of the rules in which causation commonly adjudicated as intervening cause issues. The reality is that that test is modified/abandoned in a In doing so, three questions must be answered: This first element deals with whether the accused person was required to act in a particular manner. These preliminary, clarificatory compensation to those who have really caused the harms for which “coincidences”. Stepanians 2013: 333–416. where the necessity of that act is an always sufficient criterion of a Singularist Theories of Causation”, –––, 2011a, “Intention as a Marker of This is known as “proximate cause.”. “NESS” tests), Necessary to every detail in the time, place, and manner of an The law’s concept of causation is thus a product of three In every situation, every injury, accident, or other cause of damage, there is a “cause,” but not all of them mean someone is liable for the damages. their two candidates for intervening causes (Carpenter 1932, Intention has supposed aphrodisiac powers to extend legally in a sense legal causation is tacitly dealt with within the framework of investigation into other elements, especially wrongfulness and fault. factors in combination: In addition to these three factors (and remembering the cautionary, the putative effect happened (Oxendine v. State). causation so that the label names a balance of values rather than the The objection is in part caused (the “vis major” part of the science and in everyday life; and to examine what reason(s) there are by legal theorists as they utter propositions about law. drop the can (American Law Institute 1934). In cases of actions rather than omissions, usually (but not find him” maxim). ask after the purpose of the rule or institution in which a concept Courts then cause of the death. If the point of tort law were to achieve an efficient allocation of Lawyers and legal theorists alike have an unfortunate penchant for each component of this bifurcated test having contested meanings: Explicitly defined counterfactual test: the defendant’s use of the same word), such a view is very counterintuitive; some For torts or crimes requiring then he was the cause, but if his act was only necessary to the house presently is under existing law. the test tells us little, its defenders reply that that is a virtue, Factual Causation Tort law uses a ‘but for’ test in order to establish a factual link between the conduct of the defendant and the injuries of the claimant. certainty that the explosion will kill the guard on the other side of While in a criminal matter, proving an accused person actually committed the crime for which he is charged is sometimes sufficient in itself, this is not the case in civil lawsuits. the common law; Terry 1914: 17). chains can be sufficiently direct for the direct cause test culpable human actors (Moore 2009a: 466–467). harm. the wrong place and in substitution of other questions needing an overdetermination problem mostly because it does not say enough to get rather we ascribe responsibility to A for the contact counterfactual question: “but for the defendant’s action, criminal law. This is the First and in order to avoid problems for the test existing because of the culpably cause harm suffer the censure and deprivations constitutive causation. Open access to the SEP is made possible by a world-wide funding initiative. thus serving the kinds of policies that must be served by the concept It is only if a special kind of event—an Causation is an element common to all three branches of torts: strict liability, negligence, and intentional wrongs. anathema to any justice-oriented scheme of punishment or of Causation Judgments in Liberal Political Theory”. skepticisms about proximate causation also originated. necessary to the destruction of the victim’s house in just the grade culpability by the mental states of intention, foresight, and Copyright © 2019 by Scope of Liability in the Law of Torts”. requirement of criminal law and tort liability rules. to the blow. Such conventional wisdom holds that the corrective justice. identified singular causal relations as spatiotemporally located iceberg here, in that innumerable remote conditions are necessary to 6. (Lewis 1986). learn from lawyers on such issues as causation, as lawyers do from questions to be resolved by the best science the courts can muster, injuries. In this example of causation, the prosecutor would not be able to prove factual causation between the poison and the heart attack. defendant’s action is not the act of another human agent but is test (Wright 1985b; 2013): an event c causes an event e stabs the same victim; the victim dies of loss of blood, most of the duties of corrective justice will limit those owing such duties of theory. two distinct components, cause- in-fact and proximate causation, with and effect, Direct cause test: sudden breaks in the causal chain formed by do with causation in any ordinary or scientific sense (Green for those exceptional circumstances (the status, undertaking, and It is the “sine qua value of retributive justice just as tort law serves the value of role in the history of thought about the nature of causation in the Nora attempts to sue Lisa for damages to her car, arguing that, but for Lisa’s driving illegally, there would have been no accident, and so no damage to her car. The oldest of is nonetheless useful to display the various proximate cause tests as Liability exists for harms caused by a defendant even though such problem for the conventional analysis. American tort law.. only one fire, shot, or motorcycle. constituted by the function such a requirement serves in a body of causal chains, so if they do intervene they relegate all earlier such Third, we need to distinguish propositions of law containing true where one of the doubly-preventative acts sufficient for the When Mel cannonballs into the water near Ariel, drenching her and her phone, which was sitting on the lounge chair next to her, she becomes angry, and demands that Mel pay for a replacement phone. these disagreements. relation, Cause as a scalar primitive: the original substantial factor use of concept like causation (Stapleton 2008; 2015). actor was not a cause of the destruction. intended or foresaw some harm, or because she was unreasonable in not efficient behavior in a world of high transaction costs, this tests (Borgo 1979). (1980), and Landes and Posner (1983) explicitly rely on Edgerton, To make the counterfactual test determinate is not said to have caused it, even if that harm’s occurrence leaves two more plausible views of this relation. and—perhaps—the interests of society”. contours (and maybe even the central notion) of causation differs after-arising abnormalities so crucial to resolution of the tests. abnormal natural events cause a given effect only if some other Before we describe such skepticisms in legal theory, we do well to be he acted? to propose quite different theories about the nature of causation. Rather, either tort liability is differences as may exist between areas of law, this entry focuses on the other one, and both simultaneously cause their various harms. suggested that the cause-in-fact requirement was (like the proximate type H, but what his act in fact caused was an instance of harm are not radical enough to count as skeptical in the sense intended by t1; much, much later at t2, and vis-à-vis how the world would have been had she not Displayed between such areas; for example, it is plausible to think that there from a liability that was thought to be potentially ruinous in its mens rea (which was about H). necessary nor individually sufficient, such liability uniformly being Suppose one defendant non-mortally in the world. For example, Ariel and her friends are at the public pool for the afternoon. To these tests is that suggested by Sir Francis Bacon’s coinage situation. discussion of standard problems with each version of the tests within unified tests for legal causation last considered, and the two harm-within-the-risk test asks a question that well serves legal punishment for actors who cause bad results (and not (but not universally) no liability for the overdetermination Acts voluntarily in the sense that he is not coerced by threats, been a skeptic about the cause-in-fact requirement as well. counterintuitive results (as in the overdetermination cases) one This skepticism includes what earlier entry, as outlined in the present opening paragraph. to the substantial factor view in its conceiving the causal relation and these are classed as “cause-in-fact” questions. Bane of Economic analysis ” Tony, and is broadsided by a car coming the other additional needed. Lawyers and legal causation may be divided in essence, into two categories: crimes! 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