You are on page 1of 3




1. Parts of the statute 1. Policy
2. Language 2. Purpose
3. What is found in the statute itself 3. Consequences/Presumption
4. Legal History
5. Contemporaneous



1. Title

According to Art 6 of the Consti : “Must contain only 1 subject and must be expressed thereof”
Indicative of legal intent
Resorted to when construing

2. Preamble

Known formerly as the “whereas clauses”
May be substituted by explanatory notes (Bills usually have these written by sponsor or
proponent of the bill)
Not an essential part of statute but state the reason why the enactment of such

3. Text

Words, phrase, sentences, clauses
Must be taken as a whole
Ambiguous phrases
Look at punctuation mark
-cannot prevail over the clear meaning of the language of the law. Useful in solving
certain ambiguities (same with capitalization)

4. Captions

-Also known as “headnotes”/”quotations” written at the beginning of the sections
-Not given value except statute is divided into different parts
(The headings may be controlling of the provisions under that heading)
-In case of conflict between Title of the Law and Caption. You choose TITLE.

A guide in deciding whether to construe strictly or liberally (E. journals or records) because the courts cannot speculate on the meaning which is discernible from the law itself. Must also be considered. On the other hand Tax laws are construed strictly against the tax payer because the policy of the law is to generate income for the Gov’t) PURPOSE OF THE LAW: . what does it seek to accomplish. 5.g. Statutory Directives -Law itself shows how you must interpret it (E. the policy is to level the plain field for those who have less in life so the policy in interpreting such laws must be to liberally construe them in favour of its beneficiaries.g. Courts must really find out exactly what the legislature intended. There are 2 ways in interpreting a provision of law. E-Commerce Act) -Guides the court on how to interpret law LANGUAGE OF THE STATUTE: Conflict in meaning with word. What is the mischief that the law seeks to address? Almost the same as looking at its policy (What is the objective. Cooperative Code. You choose the one that will lead to good . One may lead to bad consequences and the other may lead to good consequences. you go back to the ENGLISH VERSION (Original Language) ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- EXTRINSIC “Outside of the Law” Look for aids to interpretation or construction outside of the law you are reading Look for spirit of the Law (Legislative intent) by analyzing what is expressed in the law itself and if necessary also its history (you look at the output of the legislative branch e. what evil does it want to remedy) CONSEQUENCES AND PRESUMPTIONS: . POLICY OF THE LAW ITSELF: .g in labor law and agrarian reform law.

It doesn’t mean that a lawyer can now acquire the property in litigation. . Includes all bills filed on the subject. presumptions of constitutionality. Because law is never intended to lead to evil consequences. what did it amend? What did it delete? What did it add? Then if you have determined what did it deleted. Given great respect . peace. equity and etc. completeness. Historical. Ensures stability of Laws . . Gives you right experience & informed judgment . this is not binding in courts especially if erroneous in nature . Courts assume that the executive have studied the law before implementation and that it is its expertise and they are competent . it was deleted because it is already covered by the civil code) . Economic conditions of the country when the law was enacted can also be part of the Legislative History CONTEMPORANEOUS CONSTRUCTION . it is just something to ‘consider’ when giving the law meaning. So it has ‘persuasive’ value . If the law is adopted from foreign Jurisdiction. The WHYs and the WHEREFOREs of the Law (E. prospective application) . the rule that says that a lawyer cannot acquire the property of his client in litigation was deleted. sponsorship speeches. Social. You have to look at the history. Interpretation of the law given by administrative office & executive office to enact laws . Then look at certain presumptions (E. However. Refers to all the antecedents before the law was finally enacted. consequences.g. It doesn’t mean that we are bound to interpret it the way the foreign court did it. Includes also looking at prior laws on the same subject o If it’s an amendatory law. deliberations etc.g. was there a reason for the deletion and etc. the foreign law becomes a part of its legislative history. debates. In the Code of Professional Responsibility. It is always intended to lead t justice. was it deleted on purpose. . the president’s endorsements. Then consider the principles of RIGHTS AND JUSTICE in looking at its consequences and presumptions NOTE: Always keep in mind to avoid injustice and absurdity in interpretation. LEGISLATIVE HISTORY .