The Morality of Compensation through Tort Law

In this paper, I will focus on the normative structure of tort law. Only by elucidating the point or rationale of holding the wrongdoer responsible to the victim can we understand the value of having tort law instead of establishing other mechanisms of redress, such as a social insurance scheme. Ultimately, I will argue that the value of interpersonal justice, which underlies tort law, might not suffice to fully justify it in a given community. It all depends on whether victims of accidents are able to vindicate their rights against wrongdoers on a regular basis. If social conditions make this unlikely, then the state might be morally required to implement other forms of compensation, either replacing tort law altogether or supplementing it with social insurance in cases where private justice mechanisms tend to fail more dramatically ​
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