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Book part
Publication date: 7 May 2015

Maren Heidemann

In this chapter, the author offers a horizontal comparison of interpretation standards contained in international legal instruments of different origin. These legal…

Abstract

In this chapter, the author offers a horizontal comparison of interpretation standards contained in international legal instruments of different origin. These legal instruments range from international treaties to model laws. They also originate from different law makers such as the United Nations or individual states as well as trade or academic organisations, mainly regulating civil and commercial matters. The author argues that this comparison can provide the basis for the development of a uniform standard in the application of such law, which is often referred to as uniform law because it provides a single source of law to regulate a multitude of situations spanning across national boundaries. The main point of reference is the 1969 Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties, also known as the VCLT. This UN treaty specifically provides a general interpretation standard. From there newer standards occurring in subsequent uniform laws can be integrated using the lex specialis doctrine. This, in turn, provides opportunities for comprehensive usable methods to be developed for uniform law both in a public and private law settings. These then facilitate transparency, fairness and reasonableness. The correct identification of object and purposes of any given instrument is crucial for the successful interpretation of its content. It is this point that needs further research, and this chapter offers a starting point by providing some detailed examples from a range of uniform laws of varying nature including international sales laws, arbitration laws and Double Taxation Conventions.

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Comparative Sciences: Interdisciplinary Approaches
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78350-456-5

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Article
Publication date: 23 March 2012

Larry A. DiMatteo

The purpose of this paper is to better understand how commercial contracts are interpreted and the level of control that contracting parties have over the judicial…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to better understand how commercial contracts are interpreted and the level of control that contracting parties have over the judicial interpretation of their contracts.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper approaches the subject of commercial contract interpretation through an analysis of four dichotomies debated in legal scholarship and found in judicial decisions. The four dichotomies are formalism versus realism, literalism versus contextualism, facilitation versus regulation, and rules versus standards.

Findings

The main finding of the paper is that both poles of each of the dichotomies play important roles in the interpretation and enforcement of commercial contracts. For example, contract interpretation characterized by a high degree of formalism looks to the four‐corners of the contract for interpretive answers. In turn, some courts make use of external factors – such as distributive justice or public policy concerns in interpreting contracts.

Research limitations/implications

One of the research implications of the paper is the need for a more in‐depth analysis of how contracting parties may agree on how their contracts are to be interpreted and whether courts should be obligated to enforce party‐mandated rules of interpretation.

Practical implications

The practical implication of understanding the means and methods of contract interpretation is that it leads to a better understanding of commercial contracts in transborder transactions.

Originality/value

The value of this research lies upon the fundamental premise that the same philosophies and theories of interpretation found in most legal systems are replicated in the area of international commercial contracting.

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Journal of International Trade Law and Policy, vol. 11 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-0024

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Book part
Publication date: 29 February 2008

Teresa Godwin Phelps

Over the past few decades, the law and literature movement has fragmented, expanded, and evolved to include fields as diverse as hermeneutics and narrative theory. This…

Abstract

Over the past few decades, the law and literature movement has fragmented, expanded, and evolved to include fields as diverse as hermeneutics and narrative theory. This chapter discusses the developments in and contributions of these two strains of the law and literature movement and argues that each respectively provides us with important ways of seeing acts of interpretation and the use of stories in the legal culture. Hermeneutics provides an understanding of the phenomenon of interpretation that avoids the trap of choosing originalism or postmodernism as the accepted method of interpreting legal texts. Narrative theory provides tools for understanding and critiquing the burgeoning use of stories in the law.

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Special Issue Law and Literature Reconsidered
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-561-1

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Book part
Publication date: 9 April 2003

Matthew J Moore

The author argues that the familiar distinction between interpretive and non-interpretive theories of constitutional interpretation obscures another important distinction…

Abstract

The author argues that the familiar distinction between interpretive and non-interpretive theories of constitutional interpretation obscures another important distinction: that between hermeneutically open and hermeneutically closed theories. Closed theories seek resolution to constitutional conflict by employing methods of interpretation that are intuitively persuasive. Open theories deny that such methods are always available, and seek resolution of conflict through a combination of legal, political, and social means. The author argues that closed theories have failed to live up to their implicit promise of self-justification, and examines the practice of constitutional interpretation in Canada and Australia to support this view.

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Studies in Law, Politics and Society
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-209-2

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Article
Publication date: 14 May 2018

Hamiisi Junior Nsubuga

This paper aims to highlight how an interpretative approach to law as posited by Dworkin may be used to remedy the tension between employment protection and corporate rescue laws.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to highlight how an interpretative approach to law as posited by Dworkin may be used to remedy the tension between employment protection and corporate rescue laws.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper adopts a doctrinal and theoretical approach to law.

Findings

The tension between corporate rescue and employment protection laws affects both employees’ and business owners’ policy objectives on corporate insolvency. The theoretical perspectives of both the traditionalists and proceduralists have so far failed to provide a clear approach on how this tension may be balanced or remedied. This paper proposes that this tension may be remedied through interpretation, that is, by adopting Dworkin’s Interpretative Approach to Law.

Originality/value

Most researchers and academics have written extensively about the tension between corporate rescue and employment protection, but this paper is the first of its kind to propose a remedy to this tension through interpretation.

Details

International Journal of Law and Management, vol. 60 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1754-243X

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Article
Publication date: 12 November 2018

António Martins, Ana Dinis and Cidália Lopes

Autonomous taxation of expenses (ATE) is a special and contentious feature of corporate income taxation in Portugal. By taxing of an expanding set of corporate expenses…

Abstract

Purpose

Autonomous taxation of expenses (ATE) is a special and contentious feature of corporate income taxation in Portugal. By taxing of an expanding set of corporate expenses, it has caused many conflicts between the Portuguese tax authority and corporate taxpayers. Many of these conflicts emerged from the legal interpretation of ATE’s clauses, while others derived from frequent, and difficult to apply, legislative changes. The purpose of this paper is to focus on the following research question: does the recent evolution of the rules on ATE show an efficient process of making and interpreting tax law in Portugal? The authors intend to analyze the process of making and changing ATE’s rules, as well as to study how interpretative complexity increases conflicts between tax authorities (TA) and taxpayers.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology used is a mix of the legal research method, namely, doctrinal methodology, with an analysis of jurisprudential and arbitration trends in litigation rulings, blended with the case study analysis of ATE in Portugal. Arbitration rulings will have a particular relevance to the analysis.

Findings

The main conclusion is that, urged by the need of revenues, and sensitive to the TA’ argument of ATE’s loopholes, the government hastened to close them. However, given the procedure adopted, new legal questions aroused, creating additional layers of complexity for companies, courts and tax auditors. Constitutional issues were highlighted by companies based on the prohibition of retroactive application of tax laws.

Research limitations/implications

The paper has a conceptual nature and its conclusions cannot be automatically extended to other tax controversies or processes of amending tax laws. However, for the legal and accounting professions it offers valuable lessons in law interpretation and political lobbying to change tax laws. Also, in the international tax scene, some countries also introduced ATE, with potential for similar problems.

Practical implications

Regarding ATE’s streamlining, the process recently observed in Portugal was not, in authors’ view, managed in the best way, leaving a significant number of difficulties to be solved by courts. The change in ATE’s legal framework could have been more carefully managed, avoiding costly and time consuming disputes, in order to minimize compliance costs.

Originality/value

The paper contributes to the literature because this Portuguese experience, while highlighting the difficulties in making tax law, can be seen as a lesson on how to improve these processes, avoiding time and costs for business, TA and courts. Moreover, arbitration is a way of solving tax disputes that has been gaining ground in Portugal. In this respect, the paper also contributes to a better perception of the tax arbitration scenario in anEuropean Union country. It is also important for the accounting profession, whose members have often to deal with tax topics and the interpretative complexities they originate.

Details

Journal of Applied Accounting Research, vol. 19 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0967-5426

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Book part
Publication date: 1 January 2006

John Logan

For over thirty years, one of the most overt forms of employer opposition to unionization has been anti-union campaigns conducted by union avoidance consultants. As a…

Abstract

For over thirty years, one of the most overt forms of employer opposition to unionization has been anti-union campaigns conducted by union avoidance consultants. As a result, both union and employer associations have attempted to influence the provisions of the LMRDA that cover consultant activities. This article provides the first comprehensive historical analysis of the LMRDA's reporting and disclosure requirements covering employers and consultants. The first section examines consultant reporting policy from the late 1950s to the late 1970s, a period when unions filed relatively few complaints and the DOL initiated few investigations, but the consultant industry expanded significantly. Section two examines developments in the 1980s – the period of greatest congressional and judicial activity on consultant reporting since the 1950s. The final section looks at post-1980s events and examines why organized labor has persisted with its campaign to reform government policy on consultant reporting, despite its inability to make progress on the issue over the past four decades.

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Advances in Industrial & Labor Relations
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-470-6

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Book part
Publication date: 1 April 2004

Zehava Zevit

A longstanding question of American constitutionalism emerges out of the fact that constitutions demand fidelity. By virtue of what is the American Constitution binding…

Abstract

A longstanding question of American constitutionalism emerges out of the fact that constitutions demand fidelity. By virtue of what is the American Constitution binding? Zevit contends that many of the explanations of constitutional fidelity offered today fail to reconcile Americans’ submission to a Constitution written and ratified by generations of long ago with their claim (or aspiration) to be self-governing as a People today. Zevit introduces one type of explanation (the aptness explanation) that does not contain this flaw, and, drawing on an expansive definition of culture as a notion that encompasses the legal-political, offers the concepts of legal-political culture and baseline community as a framework for assessing the Constitution’s aptness while maintaining the People’s self-rule. She argues that constitutional aptness secures the foundations of constitutional legitimacy.

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Studies in Law, Politics and Society
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-262-7

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Article
Publication date: 22 June 2021

Ryuta Hagiwara

This paper aims to highlight key challenges to the rule of law in Hong Kong.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to highlight key challenges to the rule of law in Hong Kong.

Design/methodology/approach

This study deploys a historical and legal approach to explore the key challenges to the rule of law in Hong Kong. In particular, this paper analyzes legal conflicts in Hong Kong.

Findings

The findings show how the rule of law in Hong Kong has become a prominent battlefield of a constitutional struggle between Hong Kong Law and Chinese Law.

Originality/value

This paper hypothesizes that the conflicts arise from the different interpretations and conceptualizations of the rule of law between China and Hong Kong.

Details

Social Transformations in Chinese Societies, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1871-2673

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Article
Publication date: 10 July 2018

Rosa Maria Ballardini, Iñigo Flores Ituarte and Eujin Pei

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the technology, business and intellectual property issues surrounding the production of spare parts through additive…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the technology, business and intellectual property issues surrounding the production of spare parts through additive manufacturing (AM) from a digital source. It aims to identify challenges to the growth of the AM spares market and propose suitable solutions.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper begins with a systematic literature review and theoretical analysis. This is followed by case study research through semi-structured interviews, forming the basis of a triangulated, cross-case analysis of empirical data.

Findings

The paper identifies several obstacles to the development of the AM-produced digital spares market. The manufacturing industry will soon be forced to re-think AM as a real manufacturing alternative. Short-term, AM technology has implications for the production of components for legacy systems for which tooling facilities no longer exist. Long-term, AM will be used to produce a wide range of components especially when product and/or service functionality can be increased. To enable companies to navigate current uncertainties in the patent framework (especially the “repair vs make” doctrine), new intellectual property rights strategies could be developed around patenting both complex devices and their individual components, and seeking patent protection for CAD files. Further harmonization of the EU legal framework, the interpretation of claims and the scope of protection offered in the context of spare parts, will also be important.

Originality/value

This study pinpoints key issues that need to be addressed within the European AM business environment and the patent system and proposes recommendations for business and legal frameworks to promote the growth of a stable European digital spare parts market.

Details

Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, vol. 29 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-038X

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