Deliberation, Responsibility, and Excusing Mistakes of Law
Alexander A. Guerrero
University of Pennsylvania - Department of Philosophy; University of Pennsylvania - Department of Medical Ethics and Health Policy
April 1, 2011
Jurisprudence (2014, Forthcoming)
NYU School of Law, Public Law Research Paper No. 11-66
This paper argues against Gideon Yaffe’s defense of the doctrine that mistakes of law should not excuse offered in his paper "Excusing Mistakes of Law." I question Yaffe's strategy for defending the distinction drawn between excuses based on mistakes of law and excuses based on mistakes of fact. In particular, I question whether Yaffe's reliance on the notion of deliberation can do the work he suggests it can in providing a normative defense for the fact that "false beliefs about non-legal facts often excuse, but false beliefs about the law rarely excuse."
Number of Pages in PDF File: 11
Keywords: mistake of fact, mistake of law, deliberation, responsibility, criminal law
Date posted: August 18, 2011 ; Last revised: August 29, 2014
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