Liability insurers, underwriters, and Canadian lawyers representing insurers should take note of the just released United Kingdom Supreme Court judgment in Zurich Ins v IEG at https://www.supremecourt.uk/cases/docs/uksc-2013-0057-judgment.pdf.
Zurich contains the UKSC’s most recent explanation and summary of the interplay of liability coverage and (common law) liability on the basis of material contribution to risk. The various reasons, which review existing UK case law, should be very relevant in future Canadian cases. The latter are sure to spawn related insurance coverage disputes between insurers and their insureds and between insurers. I’ll leave it at that.
That’s not a quote from reasons for judgment (yet).
Across the North Atlantic, two professors of mathematics who ought to have crossed a few quadrangles – no doubt somebody was about – and asked for clarification have shown that some mathematicians know as little about law as some lawyers (academic or in practice) know about math.
I have it on good authority that there are well-regarded law faculties at the schools with which both professors are associated.
Readers of this blog who feel compelled to recite hosannas about the state of the Supreme Court of Canada’s jurisprudence dealing with causation in negligence – both factual causation and normative causation (i.e., legal causation without factual causation: think “material contribution”) and the need to separate the issue of causation from the issue of compensable damage – would do well to read, and consider, a very recent article by one of the deans of the subject in the Commonwealth: Jane Stapleton, “Unnecessary Causes”, 2013 128 Law Quarterly Review 39. The article is succinct enough (26 pages). It has subheadings, too. While the piece is notionally about United Kingdom law, it is generally applicable to common law Canada and has a section on Clements. The article is available online if one has access to Westlaw.