Václav Janeček
Author’s affiliation: Faculty of Law, Charles University in Prague / Keble College, University of Oxford

Unequal fault-based liability

Jurisprudence 5/2016 Section: Articles Page: 15-21

Keywords: liability; legal entity; legal person; corporation; fiction; presumption; negligence; accountability; recodification

Abstract: According to the prevailing view, the conditions of fault-based liability of a natural person are basically the same as those of a legal person (legal entity/corporation). In this article the author, however, arrives at a contrary conclusion. By looking at the theoretical underpinnings of the current statutory civil law, he concludes that the Civil Code gives rise to, in principle, unequal liability for fault. The scope of liability differs between the two types of persons (natural and legal) because, according to the Civil Code, a legal person does not have its own will or intellect. Despite this fact, the fictional legal person may still be negligent, which then substantially affects the scope of its liability.