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A Unified Approach to Contract Interpretation

By: Ryan Catterwell
Media of A Unified Approach to Contract Interpretation
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Published: 23-07-2020
Format: Hardback
Edition: 1st
Extent: 320
ISBN: 9781509927579
Imprint: Hart Publishing
Series: Hart Studies in Private Law
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
RRP: £80.00
Online price : £72.00
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About A Unified Approach to Contract Interpretation

Interpretation or construction is central to the operation of contract law. Despite the fundamental role it plays, there have been limited attempts to explain construction in holistic terms. This important book aims to fill that gap by offering a systematic exposition of the iterative process. It also goes further, suggesting practical solutions to disputes regarding questions of interpretation. The book argues that construction is not simply about establishing what words mean; it is a process through which objective intention is inferred from the choice of words in a contract. The interpretive process involves four steps: formulate the question of interpretation in dispute; explore competing answers to the question; analyse the admissible material supporting each interpretation; and weigh and balance the competing considerations. By so doing, the book offers a simple yet sophisticated framework for interpreting/constructing contracts.

Table Of Contents

1. Introduction
1.1. An Overview
1.2. The Problems
1.3. The Proposed Approach to Contract Interpretation
1.4. Research Method
1.5. The Structure of this Book

2. Theories of Contract Interpretation
2.1. Introduction
2.2. The Aim of Contract Interpretation
2.3. The Method of Contract Interpretation
2.4. Conclusion
3. The Key Features of Contract Interpretation
3.1. Introduction
3.2. Interpretive Materials
3.3. Interpretive Principles and Maxims
3.4. Interpretive Problems
3.5. Conclusion
4. A Unified Theory of Contract Interpretation
4.1. Introduction
4.2. The Aim of Contract Interpretation
4.3. The Method of Contract Interpretation
4.4. Conclusion

5. The Cognition of Contract Interpretation: A Four-Stage Process
5.1. Introduction
5.2. The Interpretive Process in Action
5.3. The Four Stages of Contract Interpretation
5.4. Conclusion
6. The Practice of Contract Interpretation: The Resolution of Interpretive Disputes
6.1. Introduction
6.2. The Resolution of Interpretive Disputes
6.3. Clear Cases: One-Sided Disputes
6.4. Determinative Arguments: Breaking the Deadlock
6.5. Strict Literal Interpretation: A Lack of Sensible Justification
6.6. Linguistic Interpretation and Purposive Construction
6.7. Linguistic Interpretation and Consequentialist Construction
6.8. Textual Conflicts and the Search for Auxiliary Support
6.9. Conclusion
7. The Role of Interpretation in Contract Law
7.1. Introduction
7.2. The Cognition of Contract Law
7.3. The Definition of the Contract
7.4. The Identity and Capacity of the Parties
7.5. Characterisation
7.6. Contract Doctrine and Non-Interpretive Inferences of Intention
7.7. Conclusion
8. Conclusion
8.1. A Brief Synopsis
8.2. Potential Limitations and Criticisms
8.3. Looking to the Future

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