There might be multiple causes for the delay but the aptest cause must be looked into. 0000000016 00000 n 8. It is also hard to understand what it means and hence hard to apply it. It is the immediate cause and not the remote cause. SOME OBSERVATIONS ON THE DOCTRINE OF PROXIMATE CAUSE. Business Interruption Insurance Claims – Understanding the Doctrine of Proximate Cause and the Principles of Concurrent Causes. Efficient proximate cause is the one that sets others in motion. The proximate cause of our man’s death is the collision and certainly no scratches. The consideration is what has brought about the result? 0000001592 00000 n One of the leading and often quoted cases on the doctrine of proximate cause is Insurance Company v. Boon . Had the words “its own” not been there the resultant fire damage would not have been covered under the rule of proximate cause. the doctrine of Causa Proximo (Proximate Cause) is not applied because the insurer is bound to pay the amount of insurance whatever may be the reason of death. Under this rule, in order to determine whether a loss resulted from a cause covered under an insurance policy , a court looks for the predominant cause which sets into motion the chain of events producing the loss, which may not necessarily be the last event that immediately preceded the loss. Copr. 0000001047 00000 n Marine Insurance: The Doctrine of Proximate Cause and Insurance against War Risks at Sea. Co. v. Partridge (1973) 10 Cal.3d 94, which holds that, where an injury is proximately caused by two or more independent causes, the insurer is liable if any of those causes is covered under its policy. (iii) ordinary wear and tear, ordinary leakage and breakage inherent vice or nature of the subject matter insured, or any loss proximately caused by rates or vermin or any injury to machinery not proximately caused by maritime perils. Meaning 18 2. 12.Fire Insurance 1. The proximate cause itself may not do any direct damage. From all the examples explained hereinbefore the readers would possibly appreciate that it is indeed the Common Sense that is required most to find out the proximate cause of a result. Journal of Insurance Coverage. 53 0 obj <>stream So, this principle is not of much practical importance in connection with life assurance, but in the following cases, the proximate causes arc observed in the life insurance, too. Proximate cause is concerned with how the actual loss or damage happened to the insured party and whether it is a result of an insured peril. While suing that individual, one will have to prove that the negligence was the actual or proximate cause of the injury. On the other hand, a new and intervening force developed (throwing of the stone) which was active, efficient and potent enough to cause the result, i. e., falling off the last brick. Double Insurance 35 Chapter 9. Section 55 (2) (b) with clarity excuses the insurer from any loss caused due to delay even if the delay is caused by an act insured against. Let us, however, assume that as a result of the kick only 6 bricks fall but suddenly a man throws a stone on the 7th brick and gradually falls the 7th, 8th, 9th, and 10th brick. A problem arises when an insured under an accident policy is killed or suffers an injury, which has an immediate cause and a remote cause. INSURANCE: THE PROXIMATE CAUSE IN ENGLISH LAW Malcolm Clarke The proximate cause, whether an event covered by a policy (" peril") or an event excluded from a policy (" exception "), " is the dominant or effective or operative cause." 0000005882 00000 n The following morning he is discovered by some persons. A related doctrine is the insurance law doctrine of efficient proximate cause. Under this rule, in order to determine whether a loss resulted from a cause covered under an insurance policy , a court looks for the predominant cause which sets into motion the chain of events producing the loss, which may not necessarily be the last event that immediately preceded the loss. 15 Insurance Premium. Collision being the cause of death is very efficient here whilst scratch is inefficient and remote. Causation – the relationship between cause and effect – can play a key role in determining whether a claim is approved or denied, particularly as it relates to commercial property insurance coverage. Three unruly doctrines—proximate cause, concurrent cause, and efficient proximate cause—cause an inordinate amount of litigation. What is Proximate Cause. We should not try to find out the cause of causes thereby getting mixed up and complicating the issue. The insurer will be liable for any loss proximately caused by a peril insured against. Auto. An insurer is liable for a loss of which a peril insured against was the proximate cause, although a peril not contemplated by the contract may have been a remote cause of the loss; but it is not liable for a loss of which the peril insured against was only a remote cause. Proximate Cause — (1) The cause having the most significant impact in bringing about the loss under a first-party property insurance policy, when two or more independent perils operate at the same time (i.e., concurrently) to produce a loss. 34 0 obj <> endobj Courts employ a set of proximate cause rules to resolve causation disputes when a property policy states that it covers or excludes losses "caused by" a peril and there is … Certain states take into consideration the “but for” rule for proximate cause. The survey of some law cases is helpful in demonstrating the court approach in determining the proximate cause. Determining Proximate Cause Through Different Rules. nature of the insurance policy and whether a tort proximate cause analysis should be used in an insurance contract analysis. Determining Proximate Cause Through Different Rules. In Washington, a judicial doctrine called the “efficient proximate cause” rule may apply and affect insurance coverage when multiple events combine to cause a loss. He is being taken to the hospital by an ambulance. While remote causes may be disregarded in determining the cause of a loss, the doctrine must be interpreted with good sense.”. 8.1 Proximate Cause Definition Proximate cause was defined in the case of Pawsey v Scottish Union & National Insurance Company … The efficient proximate cause is not necessarily the last act in a chain of events. A policy may cover certain perils mentioned specifically therein (known as insured perils), whilst some perils may be specifically excluded (known as excepted perils) and some may still be neither included nor excluded (known as uninsured perils). There is an earthquake fire somewhere near the insured building. While this has been insisted upon frequently in the past, to-day as never before there is a movement in all departments of knowledge, - in law, in metaphysics, in … Marine Insurance Transhipment 1. Proximate cause is used in civil and criminal cases, and are frequent in personal injury legal cases. The fact that one of these circumstances was abnormal or special does not necessarily deprive the master's act of the title of proximate cause: see Hart and Honored op. 633, 643. Let’s work through a fact pattern. Difficult situations do occur where numbers of perils get involved simultaneously, some insured, some uninsured and some still accepted. For marine insurance to be observed the understanding of how proximate Cause principle is applied in marine insurance must be understood. (It is the proximate cause, not the remote cause that should be looked into is still the guiding principle. Salient features 18 Reinstatement 23 3. The insurer is not liable for ordinary wear and tear ordinary leakage and breakage, inherent vice or nature of the subject-matter insured, or for any loss proximately caused by rats or vermin, or for any injury to machinery not proximately caused by maritime perils. "doctrine of efficient proximate cause." 0000004739 00000 n This must be direct, dominant, operative & efficient. Santa Clara Law Review by an authorized administrator of Santa Clara Law Digital Commons. “Proximate cause has been defined as “that cause, which, in natural and continuous sequence, unbroken by any efficient intervening cause, produces the injury, and without which the result would not have occurred.” In the above-mentioned case, the high court citing the case of Urbano vs. 0000008510 00000 n Doctrine of Proximate Cause Many policies stipulate that a loss would be excluded only if it results ‘solely’, ‘exclusively’ or ‘directly’ from an excluded peril. 0000001444 00000 n 0000012280 00000 n "doctrine of efficient proximate cause." 34 20 The doctrine of proximate cause is one of the six principles of insurance. Let us take another example. Efficient proximate cause is the one that sets others in motion. A related doctrine is the insurance law doctrine of efficient proximate cause. To uphold and not defeat the intention of the parties to the contract. By using these two words, the insurers have intentionally waived the application of the rule of proximate cause. A policy covers- accidental fire but specifically excludes earthquake fire. The maxim "causa proxima non rempota spectature." The claim is not payable because the proximate cause of loss is earthquake fire and not ordinary fire even though the earthquake had nothing to do with the insured building. The best example here is probably the standard fire policy. So long the first cause retains its identity and efficiency until the result we may say that it is the proximate cause. Business interruption insurance is complex, both in terms of identifying the obligation to indemnify (that is the trigger for cover) as well as quantifying the amount of the indemnity (that is the covered financial loss). The proximate cause rule applies here. Knowledge of Agent. The modern legal doctrine seems to be narrower and more definite in its application than some of the older expressions of the con- DOCTRINE OF PROXIMATE CAUSE In case an individual is injured due to someone else’s negligence, one can easily claim damages due to the negligence at the end of that individual. %PDF-1.6 %���� Let us take another example. A similar view was expressed in Incorporated General Insurances Ltd v Shooter 1987(1) SA842(A) at 862D: “No difficulty arises when only one cause has to be considered. (ii) delay although the delay be caused by a peril insured against. Until recent past the Principle of proximate cause was not used to be considered as a principle as such. It is hard to disagree. For more information, please contact sculawlibrarian@gmail.com. 0 Here, going to the cinema may be simply a remote cause without proximately causing his death. Essentially, the proximate cause in law should not remain as a mere open question of fact. endstream endobj 35 0 obj <> endobj 36 0 obj <> endobj 37 0 obj <>/Font<>/ProcSet[/PDF/Text]/ExtGState<>>>/Type/Page>> endobj 38 0 obj [/ICCBased 51 0 R] endobj 39 0 obj <> endobj 40 0 obj <>stream In this case, the proximate cause of falling the last brick is throwing the stone and not the kick because the kick was not efficient enough to cause the last brick to fall. On way to the hospital, the ambulance meets a head-on collision with a lorry and all persons onboard the ambulance die including our man. It is only by considering some propositions and examples that the doctrine of proximate cause can best be understood. Definition 26 2. The Efficient Proximate Cause Doctrine in California: Ten Years After Garvey SCOTT G. JOHNSON - Scott G. Johnson is a partner with Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi L.L.P. Dover says; “The causa Proxima of a loss is the cause of the loss, proximate to the loss, not necessarily in time, but inefficiency. A similar view was expressed in Incorporated General Insurances Ltd v Shooter 1987(1) SA842(A) at 862D: It was held that the proximate cause of the sinking of the ship was torpedo (Leyland Shipping Co. V. Norwich Union Fire Insurance Society, 1918). x�b```b``fa`a``�� �� �l@q������4�l��d�v� X���M��� � This comment certainly conveys the feeling of the learned judge as to how he feels the importance of common sense in finding out the proximate cause. Concurrent cause is actually a misnomer because it suggests that the events, actions, or forces must occur simultaneously. Probably his answer will be the correct one”. That sinking feeling – proximate cause and insurance By Donald Dinnie on January 20, 2020 Posted in Insurance A German appeal court determined, in a marine claim, that the proximate cause of a vessel’s grounding and ultimate sinking after its main engine … Mr. Johnson is resident in the firm's Orange County, CA office, and his practice includes representing insurers in insurance coverage disputes. The concurrent causation doctrine operates to hold as covered losses caused jointly by an excluded peril and some other peril that is not excluded. 0000007141 00000 n There might be multiple causes for the delay but the aptest cause must be looked into. marine insurance context and to explore how perils themselves would affect the formation and application of causation rules. The law is comprised of doctrines that are incompatible, vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, and lend themselves to “logic chopping.” Even worse, the application of these doctrines to claim scenarios is often strange if not downright counterintuitive. Proceeding on that basis, the function of the Court is to identify the proximate cause of the damage. Here the proximate cause of his death is accident or falling from the horseback, the reason being that injury leading to unconsciousness, exposure to severe cold and then pneumonia are all-natural events developing gradually one after another without really being intervened by a new or independent source (The example is based on a judgment given in ETHERINGTON V. LANCASHIRE AND YORKSHIRE ACCIDENT INSURANCE Co., 1909). Reinsurance & Retention 25 8. Total & Constructive loss 30 4. The definition of the “cause” was under test in many cases and was mentioned clearly in the Marine Insurance Act 1906 in its section 55 that the cause should be proximate, as follows: 1. The law of causation is a prime example of the information few people know about and even fewer use when purchasing insurance. This is where the doctrine of proximate cause helps. It has been well defined in the leading case of Pawsey V. Scottish Union and National (1907) as follows; Proximate cause means the active, efficient cause that sets in motion a train of events which brings about a result, without the intervention of any force started and working actively from a new and independent source. The principle of proximate cause virtually revolves around the claims administration and, more precisely, diagnosing the playability or otherwise of a claim on the question of perils covered by a policy. To take another example, a man riding a horse in a lonely hilly place falls from the horseback, gets an injury and remains unconscious the whole night under exposure to severe cold. This means understanding if the injury would occur but for the action or lapse of the defendant. In accident benefits policy, double of the policy amount is paid. Duffy is in the road construction business, and uses boiling enamel as part of the construction process. 0000001157 00000 n Law report: Proximate cause in insurance law . Here the proximate cause of falling off the last brick is certainly the kick because the strength of the kick was such that it could effectively make the last brick fall without the intervention of any new force started. For an act or event to be considered a proximate cause, it does not necessarily have to directly precede a loss or begin a chain of occurrences leading to the same. While the efficient proximate cause is said to set into motion a chain of events, it is not necessarily the triggering cause, rather it is the predominating cause. The efficient proximate cause is not necessarily the last act in a chain of events. MrJustice Wright. It is hard to disagree. Notably, proximate cause in the marine insurance law is the dominant cause of the damage. The proximate cause rule applies here. DOCTRINE OF PROXIMATE CAUSE . A man scratches his leg falling from a ladder. The insurer will not be liable for any loss caused by delay unless otherwise provided. Aspen Law and Business. Sometimes the application of the rule of proximate cause may be waived by insurers through policy conditions. Proximate cause is an act, whether intentional or negligent, that is determined to have caused someone else’s damages, injury, or suffering. 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