Doctrinal forms and sources of law

Publication type Article
Status Published
Institute of Public Administration and Civil Service at the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration of the Russian Federation (IPACS RANEPA)
Consulting and Legal Protection of People Foundation
Address: Russian Federation, Moscow
Journal nameGosudarstvo i pravo
EditionIssue 9

The subject of research is doctrinal phenomena (science, scholarly opinions, opinions recognised in science, scientific schools) in the system of forms and sources of law. Historically doctrinal forms play different roles, having ascended once to the role of exercising direct control over social relations (in Emperor Valentinian's Laws), which presented the peak of their potential. In the modern context in Romano-Germanic states, including the Russian Federation, where positivism serves as the governing ideology, the doctrine does not present a form of law; besides, it is laid down as an axiom that the doctrine does not present a source of law. Nevertheless, judicial practice supplies many cases of applying doctrinal sources. Herewith, courts can give either a positive valuation of such sources, while making reference to doctrinal regulators of social relations (the article cites examples from practice of the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation and the European Court of Human Rights), or negative valuation when judges discharge court decisions, delivered with reference to theory of law. The author examines the impact of scholarly works published by certain scientists (for example, the academician A.V. Venediktov), who laid the foundation of new legal institutions. However, legislation does not preserve authorship, thus modern legislative style and legal engineering principles do not recognise authorial views. The present article examines science as a legal awareness factor. By means of this informational flow, doctrinal sources affect formation of judges’ legal conscience and beliefs. The article uses empiric evidence of the survey that involved judges’ opinion poll. The judges admitted that scholarly works could contribute to forming their legal views. The article contains the list of authors whose works, according to the polling data, the judges acknowledged as reputed sources.

Having analysed different forms, in which science influences legal regulation and law enforcement, the author works out a proposal to make amendments into Article 6 of the Civil Code of the Russian Federation by complementing it with Para 3, which would read as follows: “When applying legislation, cov-enants of the parties and custom there shall be taken into consideration general sense of relevant legal regulations, determined by statutory and doctrinal interpretation as well as by a juridical doctrine”. This new version of the law will make it legatimate to engage doctrinal interpretation and the doctrine in the course of law enforcement.

Keywordsforms of law, sources of law, legal science, doctrine, doctrinal forms of law, statutory and regulatory enactments, court practice, precedent, reputation of the source of law, legal precedent, law enforcement official law enforcement, legislator, law-making process, legal system, legal regulation, positivism, sociological approach to law, law of scholar schools, an authority’s opinion, scientific opinion, expert, expert opinion, analogy of law, Civil Code of the Russian Federation
Publication date31.10.2018
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