Please enable javascript to view this page in its intended format.

Queen's University


Erik Knutsen

Erik S. Knutsen

Associate Professor
B.A.(Hons.) (Lakehead),
J.D. (Osgoode Hall),
LL.M. (Harvard)

Faculty of Law
Queen's University
Kingston, Ontario
K7L 3N6
tel: 613-533-6000, ext. 78360
fax: 613-533-6509

Teaching Subjects

  • Torts
  • Insurance
  • Civil Procedure
  • Complex Civil Liability
  • Law, Risk and Healthcare

Current Research

  • Causation in tort and insurance
  • Insurance coverage in Canada
  • Medical malpractice

Recent Publications


"Causation in Canadian Insurance Law," 50 ALBERTA L REV 631-658 (2013).

"Coping with Complex Causation Information in Personal Injury Cases," 41 ADVOCATES QUARTERLY 149-178 (2013).

"Five Problems with Personal Injury Litigation (And What To Do About It!), 40 ADVOCATES QUARTERLY 492-517 (2013).

"Fortuity Clauses in Liability Insurance: Solving Coverage Dilemmas for Intentional and Criminal Conduct" 37 QUEENS L.J. 73 (2011).

"Auto Insurance as Social Contract: Solving Automobile Insurance Coverage Disputes Through a Public Regulatory Framework" 48 ALBERTA L. REV. 715 (2011).

"Causal Draws and Causal Inferences: A Solution to Clements v. Clements (and other causation cases)" 39 ADVOCATES QUARTERLY 241 (2011).

 "The Cost of Costs: The Unfortunate Deterrence of Everyday Civil Litigation in Canada" 36 QUEENS L.J. 113 (2010).

"Clarifying Causation in Tort" 33 DALHOUSIE L.J. 153 (2010).

"Keeping Settlements Secret," 37 FLORIDA STATE U. L. REV. 945 (2010).

"Confusion About Causation in Insurance: Solutions for Catastrophic Losses,” 61 ALABAMA L. REV. 957 (2010).


Co-author with Jeffrey Stempel and Peter N. Swisher, PRINCIPLES OF INSURANCE LAW, 4th ed. (LexisNexis U.S.: 2011).

"The Economics of Litigation," Limitation of Actions," "Settlement," "Intervention," "Consolidation," "Addition of Claims," and "Joinder of Multiple Parties" in Janet Walker et al, THE CIVIL LITIGATION PROCESS: CASES AND MATERIALS, 7th ed. (Emond Montgomery: 2010).

Book Chapters

Erik S. Knutsen & Janet Walker, "What is the Cost of Litigating in Canada?" in Christopher Hodges, Stephan Vogenauer and Magdalena Tulibacka, eds., THE COSTS AND FUNDING OF CIVIL LITIGATION: A COMPARATIVE PERSPECTIVE (Hart: 2010).

Recent Presentations

“Why Compensating Medical Malpractice Patients Fails in Canada: Empirical Evidence from the Court of Appeal for Ontario" U. de Montreal "Compensation and the Common Law" conference, Montreal, PQ (March 21, 2014).

"Negligent Misrepresentation Damages: Tort versus Contract” National Judicial Institute Program for Alberta Queen’s Bench, Calgary, AB (January 30, 2014)

“From Fortuity to Morality and Back: Re-envisioning Liability Insurance Coverage for Intentional and Criminal Conduct” Rutgers-Camden School of Law Centre for Risk and Responsibility, Camden, New Jersey, U.S.A. (September 21, 2013).

Keynote Address: "Understanding Causation" Advocates Society Annual 'Tricks of the Trade' Conference, Toronto, ON (January 27, 2012).

“Fortuity Clauses in Liability Insurance: Solving Coverage Dilemmas for Intentional and Criminal Conduct” Canadian Law and Economics Association Annual Conference, Toronto, Ontario (September 24, 2011).

"Teaching Procedure Across Common Law Systems: Canada," "Scholarly Symbiosis: Canadian Civil Procedure Teaching and Scholarship," and "Teaching Civil Procedure as Integrated System in Canada," Oxford-Queens-Osgoode Project on Civil Procedure, Herstmenceux, England (June 26, 2010).

Canadian Studies Visiting Lecture, "Canada's Accident Compensation System: Some Reflections for China," Fudan University School of Law, Shanghai, China (May 6, 2010).

“Fortuity Clauses in Insurance: Moral Hazard or Moral Crusade?” Spring Conference on Contracts – University of Nevada, Las Vegas (February 27, 2010).

“Confusion About Causation in Insurance: Solutions for Catastrophic Losses” Asia-Pacific Risk and Insurance Association Annual Conference, Peking University, Beijing, China (July 20, 2009).

Recent Academic Awards/Grants

    Co-applicant, "The Cost of Justice: Weighing the Costs of Fair and Effective Resolution to Legal Problems"

    • Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council - Community University Research Alliance Grant ($1,000,000 for 5 years) (August, 2011).

      Law Students Society Teaching Award - Faculty of Law, Queen's University (2010 and 2007)

      Public Service

      Member, Law Commission for Ontario: Law Faculty Advisory Group

      Member, Ontario Chief Justice's Advisory Committee on Professionalism

      Past Legal Practice Employment

      Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, LLP – Associate, Litigation Department, New York, NY

      • 9/11, World Trade Center-related cases for global insurer

      Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP – Associate, Research/Litigation Departments, Toronto, ON

      • complex tort, insurance, commercial litigation cases
      • tort and insurance cases for two of Canada’s trans-continental railway companies

      Carrel+Partners LLP – Associate, Litigation Department, Thunder Bay, ON

      • complex torts, insurance, professional negligence cases (trials and appeals)


      Erik S. Knutsen's Curriculum Vitae

      Link to Erik S. Knutsen's Social Sciences Research Network Research Page

      Kingston, Ontario, Canada. K7L 3N6. 613.533.2000