The Crime/Tort Distinction: Legal Doctrine and Normative Perspectives
Kenneth W. Simons, The Crime/Tort Distinction: Legal Doctrine and Normative Perspectives, 17 Widener L.J. 719 (2008).
This essay provides an overview of the crime/tort distinction. It first investigates some of the fundamental differences between criminal law and tort law in doctrine and legal structure. It then explores some important similarities and differences in normative perspectives between the two doctrinal fields. This typology should prove analytically useful for examining some of the specific issues at the borderline of crime and torts-such as the proper scope of punitive damage liability and the question whether criminal law as well as tort law should vary legal sanctions simply because of the fortuitous occurrence of harm.