Contrastive causation in the law

Legal Theory 16 (4):259-297 (2010)

Authors
Jonathan Schaffer
Rutgers University - New Brunswick
Abstract
What conception of causation is at work in the law? I argue that the law implicitly relies on a contrastive conception. In a liability case where the defendant's breach of duty must be shown to have caused the plaintiff's damages, it is not enough to consider what would have happened if the cause had not occurredthe law requires us to look to a specific replacement for the effect, which in this case is the hypothetical outcome in which the plaintiff came off better. In place of I suggest the more explicit An explicitly contrastive approach can thus potentially help the lawyer phrase her causal question in a more explicit way, while shedding light on our conception of causation
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DOI 10.1017/s1352325210000224
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References found in this work BETA

Causality: Models, Reasoning, and Inference.Judea Pearl - 2000 - Cambridge University Press.
Causality.Judea Pearl - 2009 - Cambridge University Press.
Causation, Prediction, and Search.Peter Spirtes, Clark Glymour & Richard Scheines - 1996 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 47 (1):113-123.
Making Things Happen. A Theory of Causal Explanation.James Woodward - 2007 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 74 (1):233-249.

View all 36 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Grounding in the Image of Causation.Jonathan Schaffer - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (1):49-100.
Contrastive Causation.Jonathan Schaffer - 2005 - Philosophical Review 114 (3):327-358.
Prediction, Understanding, and Medicine.Alex Broadbent - 2018 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 43 (3):289-305.

View all 14 citations / Add more citations

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