How To Read The Law

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How To Read The Law
How To Read The Law

Video: How To Read The Law

Video: "How to Read a Case" with UVA Law Professor Anne Coughlin 2022, November

A person without legal education or an inexperienced lawyer at the first encounter with regulatory legal acts comes to mind: how to read this or that law correctly? How to find an answer to a question of interest or to correctly solve a legal problem?

How to read the law
How to read the law


Step 1

Purchase of legislation. In order to start reading the law, you must first purchase it in a bookstore or download an electronic version - as it is more convenient for anyone. Whichever method of purchase you choose, when purchasing, pay attention to the relevance of this source of legal information. Consider not only the date of publication of the law, but also the changes and additions adopted to it. On the cover of the law, if you buy a printed version of it, the date of the last changes adopted at the time of its publication is spelled out. The electronic version also contains information about the adopted amendments - their list is placed immediately under the title of the act. Acquisition of an outdated version of a legislative act or with the absence of changes that are relevant on the day of reading entails a distortion of the reliability of the information contained in the law or an incomplete understanding of its operation.

Step 2

Competent interpretation of the law with the help of comments to it. Codes and other federal laws (government decrees, presidential decrees and laws of constituent entities are much less common), as a rule, immediately after the publication or appearance of amendments, are commented on by well-known legal scholars. The commentary gives a broad interpretation of the law, with examples from judicial practice and in comparison with the legislation of foreign countries. The law contains a short “storyline” of the norm, which needs to be examined in detail not only by ordinary citizens, but also by professional lawyers. The use of scientific comments by several scientists contributes to the most profound disclosure of the meaning of the legislative norm

Step 3

Reading and interpreting the law in the context of the rest of the legislation in force. When reading laws, it is also necessary to pay attention to the legislative acts associated with it. This promotes understanding of the law in interaction with similar and complementary norms. For example, when reading the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation, it will not be superfluous to pay attention to the Criminal Procedure Code, and when reading the Arbitration Procedure Code - to similar norms of the Civil.

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