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Om narrativ beviskravslära vid domstols prövning av komplexa orsakssamband

Hallén, Axel LU (2018) JURM02 20181
Department of Law
Faculty of Law
Abstract (Swedish)
Många kommersiella avtalsförhållanden är komplexa, och då tvist avseende fel i avtalsprestationen uppstår måste käranden bevisa ett orsakssamband mellan svarandens agerande och skadan. Detta försvåras ofta av avtalsförhållandets långvarighet såväl som att det ofta finns flera möjliga alternativa orsaker till skadan.

Det finns flera olika modeller för domstols prövning av parternas bevisning, och därtill olika beviskrav av varierande styrka och innebörd. En sådan modell är den narrativa beviskravsläran, enligt vilken domstolen ska jämföra två fullständiga narrativ, där den framlagda bevisningen ska värderas holistiskt och där beviskravet är en överviktsprincip. I svensk rätt förespråkas å andra sidan ofta en atomistisk bevisvärdering och... (More)
Många kommersiella avtalsförhållanden är komplexa, och då tvist avseende fel i avtalsprestationen uppstår måste käranden bevisa ett orsakssamband mellan svarandens agerande och skadan. Detta försvåras ofta av avtalsförhållandets långvarighet såväl som att det ofta finns flera möjliga alternativa orsaker till skadan.

Det finns flera olika modeller för domstols prövning av parternas bevisning, och därtill olika beviskrav av varierande styrka och innebörd. En sådan modell är den narrativa beviskravsläran, enligt vilken domstolen ska jämföra två fullständiga narrativ, där den framlagda bevisningen ska värderas holistiskt och där beviskravet är en överviktsprincip. I svensk rätt förespråkas å andra sidan ofta en atomistisk bevisvärdering och här uppställs i regel ett högt beviskrav. Arbetet har utgått ifrån tesen att domstols nyttjande av den narrativa beviskravsläran innebär en fördel för en part då tvist är om komplexa orsakssamband. Syftet med arbetet har därför varit att jämföra den narrativa beviskravsläran med den i svensk rätt centrala bevisvärdemetoden, för att sedan undersöka huruvida svenska domstolar kan sägas nyttja den narrativa beviskravsläran.

I arbetets första del presenteras de bevisteoretiska utgångspunkterna, och arbetet har då utförts enligt en rent deskriptiv metod. Den narrativa beviskravsläran beskrivs utifrån doktrin, och arbetet påvisar att läran utgår ifrån att parterna ska presentera var sitt narrativ och att domstolen enligt överviktsprincipen ska välja det som framstår som mest sannolikt. Här beskrivs även den narrativa beviskravslärans bakgrund i amerikansk bevisrätt såväl som i narrativa bevisteorier, samt närmare hur den holistiska bevisvärderingen ska utföras. Därefter genomgås bakgrunden i svensk rätt, även här utifrån doktrin. Här är utgångspunkten att parten ska styrka sin talan, och en central bevisvärderingsmetod är bevisvärdemetoden, enligt vilken domstolens bevisvärdering ska ske uppdelat i beviskedjor. I delanalysen visar arbetet sedan på hur bevisvärderingen enligt de bägge lärorna kan tänkas gå till i praktiken, och här har en konkretiseringsmetod använts. Här visas att bevisvärdemetoden medför flera praktiska svårigheter vid prövningen av ett komplext orsakssamband, och att det är rimligt att anta att parten har fördel av domstols nyttjande av den narrativa beviskravsläran.

I arbetets andra del behandlas domstolars bevisprövning i praktiken. Inledningsvis visas, utifrån en rättsdogmatisk metod, att svenska domstolar inte kan sägas nyttja en överviktsprincip så som denna ska förstås i svensk rätt, nämligen som en riskfördelningsmodell utan nyttjande av bevisbördeplacering. Istället tycks klart mera sannolikt vara det beviskrav som bildar utgångspunkt i tvister avseende för arbetet relevanta orsakssamband, och arbetet visar även att beviskravet kan anses omfatta dels ett krav på fristående, dels ett krav på komparativ sannolikhet. Vidare visas att klart mera sannolikt även påverkar domstolens bevisvärdering genom ett krav på en helhetsbedömning av partens påstående, och att HD:s bevisvärdering i praxis därför i någon mån kan sägas vara prejudicerande. Även här har en rättsdogmatisk metod nyttjats. Utifrån två refererade avgöranden från HD visas att det finns anledning att anta att bevisbedömningen i för arbetet relevanta tvister sker holistiskt.

I arbetets avslutande kapitel dras slutsatsen att HD:s användning av kravet klart mera sannolikt, sammantaget med nyttjandet av en helhetsbedömning, innebär att det är möjligt att konkludera att domstolens bevisprövning kan sägas utföras enligt den narrativa beviskravsläran. (Less)
Abstract
Many commercial partnerships are contractually complex, and when a dispute arrises, the plaintiff must show causation between the actions of the defendant and the damage sustained. This is often made difficult by the longevity of the partnership, as well as the often numerous alternative causes of the damage.

There are several different methods by which the courts can try the evidence put forth by the parties, with different standards of proof which vary in strength and meaning. One such method is the relative plausibility theory, according to which the court is to compare two complete stories, where the individual pieces of evidence are to be assessed holistically, and where the standard of proof is a preponderance-of-the-... (More)
Many commercial partnerships are contractually complex, and when a dispute arrises, the plaintiff must show causation between the actions of the defendant and the damage sustained. This is often made difficult by the longevity of the partnership, as well as the often numerous alternative causes of the damage.

There are several different methods by which the courts can try the evidence put forth by the parties, with different standards of proof which vary in strength and meaning. One such method is the relative plausibility theory, according to which the court is to compare two complete stories, where the individual pieces of evidence are to be assessed holistically, and where the standard of proof is a preponderance-of-the- evidence-test. However, legal scholars in Sweden often advocate that the evidence is to be assessed atomistically and that the standard of proof should correspond to a high degree of certainty. The theory of this paper is therefore that the parties involved in a dispute regarding complex causations would benefit from the court’s use of the relative plausibility theory in its assessment of the evidence. The purpose of the paper has therefore been to compare the relative plausibility theory with one method central to the assessment of evidence in Swedish law, the value-of-the-evidence-method (sw: Bevisvärdemetoden). The purpose has furthermore been to investigate whether it can be said that Swedish courts use the relative plausibility theory.

In the first part of the paper, a theoretical background is presented, and the study hereby has followed a purely descriptive method. The relative plausibility theory is presented based on how it has been described in American legal doctrine, and the paper shows that the theory assumes that both parties will present a story and that the court, according to the preponderance-of-the-evidence-test, is to choose the story that appears most likely. The background of the theory, both in American law in general and in so called story-model-theories, as well as the holistic method for the assessment of evidence, is presented. Thereafter, the relevant background in Swedish legal doctrine is presented. Here, the burden of proof corresponds to a high degree of certainty (sw: styrkt), and the basis of the courts assessment of the evidence is the value-of-the-evidence-method, according to which the court's assessment of the evidence is to be divided up into so called evidence chains (sw: beviskedjor). In the part-analysis it is then theorised how the assessment of the evidence according to both theories may be carried out in practice, whereby a so called concretization-method has been used. In the part-analysis it is also shown that the use of the value-of-the- evidence-method involves practical difficulties when assessing evidence regarding complex causation, and that it therefore is reasonable to assume that a court’s use of the relative plausibility theory is beneficial to the party.

In the second part of the paper, the method by which the courts assess the evidence in practise is studied. Initially, based on a legal dogmatic method, it is found that courts in Sweden does not seem to acknowledge a preponderance-of-the-evidence-test, at least not the way the test is to be understood in Swedish law, that is, as a model for the allocation of risk without the use of a burden of proof. Instead, it seems that the standard of proof most commonly used is by a certain-preponderance-of-the-evidence (sw: klart mera sannolikt), and it is shown that the burden entails a requirement for the plaintiffs claim to have been made likely in itself aswell as a requirement for a relative probability. Furthermore, it is shown that also the court's assessment of the evidence will be affected by the requirement for a certain-preponderance-of-the- evidence, since the burden calls for the assessment of a party's claim in its entirety. Therefore, it is theorised that the Supreme Court’s assessment of evidence in practice to some extent may be said to be precedential. Therefore, a legal dogmatic method has been used in this part. Lastly, based on two rulings by the Supreme Court, it is shown that it is reasonable to assume that the assessment of the evidence put forward in disputes relevant to the paper is holistic.

The final chapter of the paper shows that it follows the way the Supreme Court interprets the burden of certain-preponderance-of-the-evidence, together with the way the Court carries out the overall assessment of the evidence in practise, that it is reasonable to find that the Court have followed the relative plausibility theory when trying the plaintiffs claim. (Less)
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author
Hallén, Axel LU
supervisor
organization
alternative title
On the use by Swedish courts of the relative plausibility theory when trying complex causation
course
JURM02 20181
year
type
H3 - Professional qualifications (4 Years - )
subject
keywords
civilrätt, narrativ, beviskravslära, bevisvärdering, orsakssamband, beviskrav, bevisvärdemetoden, relative, plausibility, theory
language
Swedish
id
8941147
date added to LUP
2018-06-08 10:39:24
date last changed
2018-06-08 10:39:24
@misc{8941147,
  abstract     = {Many commercial partnerships are contractually complex, and when a dispute arrises, the plaintiff must show causation between the actions of the defendant and the damage sustained. This is often made difficult by the longevity of the partnership, as well as the often numerous alternative causes of the damage.

There are several different methods by which the courts can try the evidence put forth by the parties, with different standards of proof which vary in strength and meaning. One such method is the relative plausibility theory, according to which the court is to compare two complete stories, where the individual pieces of evidence are to be assessed holistically, and where the standard of proof is a preponderance-of-the- evidence-test. However, legal scholars in Sweden often advocate that the evidence is to be assessed atomistically and that the standard of proof should correspond to a high degree of certainty. The theory of this paper is therefore that the parties involved in a dispute regarding complex causations would benefit from the court’s use of the relative plausibility theory in its assessment of the evidence. The purpose of the paper has therefore been to compare the relative plausibility theory with one method central to the assessment of evidence in Swedish law, the value-of-the-evidence-method (sw: Bevisvärdemetoden). The purpose has furthermore been to investigate whether it can be said that Swedish courts use the relative plausibility theory.

In the first part of the paper, a theoretical background is presented, and the study hereby has followed a purely descriptive method. The relative plausibility theory is presented based on how it has been described in American legal doctrine, and the paper shows that the theory assumes that both parties will present a story and that the court, according to the preponderance-of-the-evidence-test, is to choose the story that appears most likely. The background of the theory, both in American law in general and in so called story-model-theories, as well as the holistic method for the assessment of evidence, is presented. Thereafter, the relevant background in Swedish legal doctrine is presented. Here, the burden of proof corresponds to a high degree of certainty (sw: styrkt), and the basis of the courts assessment of the evidence is the value-of-the-evidence-method, according to which the court's assessment of the evidence is to be divided up into so called evidence chains (sw: beviskedjor). In the part-analysis it is then theorised how the assessment of the evidence according to both theories may be carried out in practice, whereby a so called concretization-method has been used. In the part-analysis it is also shown that the use of the value-of-the- evidence-method involves practical difficulties when assessing evidence regarding complex causation, and that it therefore is reasonable to assume that a court’s use of the relative plausibility theory is beneficial to the party.

In the second part of the paper, the method by which the courts assess the evidence in practise is studied. Initially, based on a legal dogmatic method, it is found that courts in Sweden does not seem to acknowledge a preponderance-of-the-evidence-test, at least not the way the test is to be understood in Swedish law, that is, as a model for the allocation of risk without the use of a burden of proof. Instead, it seems that the standard of proof most commonly used is by a certain-preponderance-of-the-evidence (sw: klart mera sannolikt), and it is shown that the burden entails a requirement for the plaintiffs claim to have been made likely in itself aswell as a requirement for a relative probability. Furthermore, it is shown that also the court's assessment of the evidence will be affected by the requirement for a certain-preponderance-of-the- evidence, since the burden calls for the assessment of a party's claim in its entirety. Therefore, it is theorised that the Supreme Court’s assessment of evidence in practice to some extent may be said to be precedential. Therefore, a legal dogmatic method has been used in this part. Lastly, based on two rulings by the Supreme Court, it is shown that it is reasonable to assume that the assessment of the evidence put forward in disputes relevant to the paper is holistic.

The final chapter of the paper shows that it follows the way the Supreme Court interprets the burden of certain-preponderance-of-the-evidence, together with the way the Court carries out the overall assessment of the evidence in practise, that it is reasonable to find that the Court have followed the relative plausibility theory when trying the plaintiffs claim.},
  author       = {Hallén, Axel},
  keyword      = {civilrätt,narrativ,beviskravslära,bevisvärdering,orsakssamband,beviskrav,bevisvärdemetoden,relative,plausibility,theory},
  language     = {swe},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Om narrativ beviskravslära vid domstols prövning av komplexa orsakssamband},
  year         = {2018},
}