Title

Is There a Case for Strict Liability?

Authors

Larry Alexander

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2018

Abstract

In this short paper, I shall answer the title’s question first in the context of criminal law and then in the context of tort law. In that latter section I shall also mention in passing contractual and other forms of civil liability that are strict, although they will not be my principal focus. My conclusions will be that strict liability is never proper as the basis for retributive punishment; that it is a very crude device for achieving deterrence through nonretributive penalties; and that with respect to tort liability, it is best justified as a means of defining insurance categories.

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