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Interpretation Clauses in International Contracts

The content issue

Type: Special number

Date: 2000

ref: 6-2000N

Pages: 2000

The degree of standardization of some interpretation clauses is comparable to some other contract clauses (e.g., assignment clauses). This may be explained by the fact that interpretation clauses are much less tailor-made than some other contract clauses which are related to the core of the contract. Interpretation clauses are often standard terms incorporated at the beginning or the end of contracts and not the subject of negotiations between the parties. Another reason for explaining the standardization of interpretation clauses may be related to the influence of Anglo-American drafting techniques for international contracts. Often used by US or UK law firms and companies, these clauses appear in contracts where parties from the US or the UK are involved or where US or UK law firms were retained. Sometimes, these sophisticated clauses are considered as the state "of the art" of contract drafting and are used also where the US or the UK are not involved, for instance if English is the negotiation and contract language.