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Public Interest and its Importance in Law

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  25 May 2021

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Summary

INTRODUCTION

The purpose of this chapter is to briefly cover the category of public interest in its complexity. The task is to define it, especially its content, formation and implementation. The model, which this chapter arrives at in its theoretical part (section 2), is then applied in the practical part (section 3).

Emphasis is placed on methodology, especially assessment, which means evaluating the comparison of relevant factors (interests) and their balancing, i.e. reaching a compromise between these factors when using their quantification.

The public interest is widely used as a term in legislation and legal practice. For example, in the Czech legal system, its occurrence is 4,675, taking in account only the explicitly mentioned cases. However, this does not correspond to the attention which is paid to the topic by jurisprudence. Significant works dealing with this phenomenon, either in general or in a certain context, in a very limited number, typically come exclusively from the pen of authors concentrating on public law. Although the public interest is a certain, albeit specific, kind of the more general concept of the interest, this general category, and thus the basis of the public interest, is dealt by these authors only marginally. This is a certain paradox, because the concept of interest is the basis of one of the most important legal theories (schools) of jurisprudence of interest (Interessejurisprudenz), which together with jurisprudence of values (Wertungsjurisprudenz) and the school of legal realism, belongs to the family of sociological legal trends, which in a way follow the purposeful jurisprudence of Rudolf von Jhering. Representatives of these guidelines are limited mainly to the field of private law.

The task of this chapter also consists in combining the knowledge of both of these exclusive directions, of the public and private law, because this can be seen not only as a completely logical approach, but above all for the possibility of mutual enrichment, since the categories of interest and public interest permeate all branches of law.

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Publisher: Intersentia
Print publication year: 2021

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