Legal causation requirements, in both tort and insurance law, rank among the most pervasive yet most elusive and most misunderstood of all legal concepts in Anglo-American law for legal practitioners, the courts,' and academic scholars alike. Indeed, no less an authority than William Lloyd Prosser has stated that there "is perhaps nothing in the entire field of law which has called forth more disagreement, or upon which the opinions are in such a welter of confusion" than proximate cause issues, "despite the manifold attempts which have been made to clarify the subject."

Although some commentators have looked upon legal causation's "mystifying riddles" as the "last refuge of muddy thinkers," the purpose of this article is to attempt to demystify many of these proximate cause riddles in tort actions and insurance coverage disputes and hopefully provide both the tort law practitioner and the insurance law practitioner with some general guidelines and some practical tips for negotiating this often treacherous legal terrain while pleading and proving legal causation requirements.

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