The Transnational Dimension of Statutory Interpretation – Tragically Overlooked in a Global Commercial Environment

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Abstract

Recently, we came across a very well written and thoroughly researched article by Dharmananda and Firios entitled “Interpreting statutes and contracts: A distinction without a difference?”. The article made many excellent points and was very thought provoking – but it overlooked an aspect of legal interpretation which is central to the modern legal landscape, namely internationalisation. In all areas of law – arguably, especially in our field of commercial regulation – the regulatory effects of globalisation and harmonisation necessitate a different perspective on both statutory and contractual interpretation. We do not disagree with the paper’s overarching conclusion that there are important parallels between contractual and legislative interpretation – but we posit that in the formula to establish this point it becomes increasingly important to include the international dimension. Not all domestic statues should be seen in a solely domestic light.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6-19
JournalNordic Journal of Commercial Law
Volume2019
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 22 Jan 2019

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interpretation
harmonization
internationalization
statute
globalization
regulation
Law

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abstract = "Recently, we came across a very well written and thoroughly researched article by Dharmananda and Firios entitled “Interpreting statutes and contracts: A distinction without a difference?”. The article made many excellent points and was very thought provoking – but it overlooked an aspect of legal interpretation which is central to the modern legal landscape, namely internationalisation. In all areas of law – arguably, especially in our field of commercial regulation – the regulatory effects of globalisation and harmonisation necessitate a different perspective on both statutory and contractual interpretation. We do not disagree with the paper’s overarching conclusion that there are important parallels between contractual and legislative interpretation – but we posit that in the formula to establish this point it becomes increasingly important to include the international dimension. Not all domestic statues should be seen in a solely domestic light.",
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AB - Recently, we came across a very well written and thoroughly researched article by Dharmananda and Firios entitled “Interpreting statutes and contracts: A distinction without a difference?”. The article made many excellent points and was very thought provoking – but it overlooked an aspect of legal interpretation which is central to the modern legal landscape, namely internationalisation. In all areas of law – arguably, especially in our field of commercial regulation – the regulatory effects of globalisation and harmonisation necessitate a different perspective on both statutory and contractual interpretation. We do not disagree with the paper’s overarching conclusion that there are important parallels between contractual and legislative interpretation – but we posit that in the formula to establish this point it becomes increasingly important to include the international dimension. Not all domestic statues should be seen in a solely domestic light.

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