The Supreme Court of Canada has provided some welcome guidance on the law of causation, with the release of its decision in Clements v. Clements, 2012 SCC 32.
As much as the Court insisted before that decision that there was only one test for factual causation, the cases actually articulated two tests: the “but for” test, and the “material contribution” test.
Proof that the Plaintiff’s damages would not have arisen “but for” the Defendant’s negligence has been the primary test for causation, but the Courts have continually stated that under certain circumstances, the Plaintiff can succeed by showing that the Plaintiff’s negligence “materially contributed” to the damages.
What that has meant, and when it applies has been the subject of some debate.
Pizza delivery risk on Superbowl Sunday: http://goo.gl/WFgQj The things that keep insurers up at night.
Very interesting take on the implications of insurance fraud: http://goo.gl/19Pqe
The Alberta Court of Appeal has upheld Alberta’s Minor Injury Regulations, capping general damages in motor vehicle accident litigation at $4,000. The Court released its decision in Morrow v. Zhang, the litigation challenging Alberta’s Minor Injury Regulations, on June 12, 2009.
In the meantime, the ruling by the Nova Scotia Supreme Court in Hartling et al v. Nova Scotia is expected to be heard in the Nova Scotia Court of Appeal in October 2009.
An interesting take on Alberta’s decision can be found here.
This is a potentially troubling development for volunteer rescue operations, particularly where they operate in backcountry ski operations.