Is legal certainty a formal value?

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Title: Is legal certainty a formal value?
Authors: Lifante Vidal, Isabel
Research Group/s: Teoría del Derecho
Center, Department or Service: Universidad de Alicante. Departamento de Filosofía del Derecho y Derecho Internacional Privado
Keywords: Legal certainty | Predictability | Rule of law | Justice | Formal values | Substantive values
Knowledge Area: Filosofía del Derecho
Issue Date: 13-Jul-2020
Publisher: Routledge
Citation: Jurisprudence. 2020, 11(3): 456-467.
Abstract: Legal certainty is a central requirement for the rule of law. Legal systems should both enable those subject to law to predict human behaviour and institutional reactions and to prevent an arbitrary use of state power against them. The value of legal certainty is usually conceived as a formal value opposed to the values of freedom or equality (material or substantive justice). The purpose of this paper is to discuss this idea and to explore a less formal conception of the value of legal certainty. In this sense, I will argue that we need to depart from a purely formal understanding of the requirements imposed by such value and to consider the need to provide them with a substantive content. So, legal certainty is not completely independent of legal substantive justice and it implies that it is impossible to define ex ante which concrete aspects of justice should not be the law’s concern.
Sponsor: This work was supported by the Spanish Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad under Research Project DER2017-86643-P (“Una teoría postpositivista del Derecho”).
ISSN: 2040-3313 (Print) | 2040-3321 (Online)
DOI: 10.1080/20403313.2020.1778289
Language: eng
Type: info:eu-repo/semantics/article
Rights: © 2020 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group
Peer Review: si
Publisher version:
Appears in Collections:INV - Teoría del Derecho - Artículos de Revistas

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