Evaluating Cases in Legal Disputes as Rival Theories
In this paper we propose to draw a link from the quantitative notion of coherence, previously used to evaluate rival scientific theories, to legal reasoning. We evaluate the stories of the plaintiff and the defendant in a legal case as rival theories by measuring how well they cohere when accounting for the evidence. We show that this gives rise to a formalized comparison between rival cases that account for the same set of evidence, and provide a possible explanation as to why judgements may favour one side over the other. We illustrate our approach by applying it to a known legal dispute from the literature.