Dr Marek SUSKA
Silesian University in Katowice
English abstract: The goal of the article is to determine whether the legal interpretation should be made with the assumption of consistency of terminology at the level of a branch of law or at the global level. The question is therefore whether the interpreter should presume that the legislator ‘by default’ refers those who apply the law only to the legal definitions contained in a certain, most general act within one branch of law, or whether, regardless of the branch, the legislator always uses a uniform terminology. An analysis of the law-making practice may be a source of useful cues to answer this question. First, the article reconstructs the requirements imposed on the drafters by the Principles of Legislative Technique. Secondly, several dozen acts passed by the Sejm of the 7th and 8th term of office are examined in terms of the presence of ‘definitional’ references to acts from the same branch of law and acts from another branch of law. In this way, it is established that only the presumption of a legal act maintain terminological consistency with legal definitions set out in the basic act for a given branch of law seems to be legitimate. The basic act should not be understood in an institutional way, but as one relating to a quasi-branch. The article also identifies at least some cases where it is justified or unjustified to use ‘explicit’ references to point out branch-level or global terminological consistency. The results of the analyses may find application in the discussion on the meaning of the directive of legal language in the theory and practice of interpretation, as well as in the theory and practice of legislation – in determining when it is necessary to use a provision referring to a legal definition.
Keywords: terminological consistency, provisions referring to other provisions, legal language, law-making, legal interpretation, system of law
Published: Number 1(34)/2023, pp.58-71
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