Plain Meaning Rule

How to read and figure out the law or Insurance Policy Provisions – Evidence of Coverage

Read the Statute,  Read the Statute,  Read the Statute!” .

Justice Felix Frankfurter said that –   The language of the text of the statute should serve as the starting point for any inquiry into its meaning.    To properly understand and interpret a statute, [first] you must read the text closely, keeping in mind that your initial understanding of the text may not be the only plausible interpretation of the statute or even the correct one. Guide to Reading & Interpreting  *  American Society of Healthcare Risk Management    and * Wikipedia
.
The way I heard it, either in my one year of correspondence law school or two years of beginners Talmud was:
Read the law three times, then when you think you understand it, read it again.
.

The starting point in statutory construction is the language of the statute itself. The Supreme Court often recites the “plain meaning rule,”  as in, King vs Burwell Subsidies in Health Care.Gov upheld, that, if the language of the statute is clear, there is no need to look outside the statute to its legislative history in order to ascertain the statute’s meaning.

Felix Frankfurther - Wikipedia
Felix Frankfurther – Wikipedia
Try these links for youtube video https://youtu.be/ryx0OX5pAQ4 *** https://youtu.be/q2pbVhxHZWw
Try these links for youtube video https://youtu.be/ryx0OX5pAQ4 *** https://youtu.be/q2pbVhxHZWw

I’m just not this quick to make policy determinations and interpretations. With so few documents in front of the Insurance Agent on TV how does he know?

Episode Notes IMDB

King v Burwell - Subsidies Upheld - ScotusCare
King v Burwell – Subsidies Upheld – ScotusCare – Plain Meaning Rule – Interpretive Jiggery Pokery

President Trump says no one knew healthcare would be so complicated. He could have asked me.

 Tools to Read a Statute

A cardinal rule of construction is that a statute should be read as a harmonious whole, with its various parts being interpreted within their broader statutory context in a manner that furthers statutory purposes.  A provision that may seem ambiguous in isolation is often clarified by the remainder of the statutory scheme — because the same terminology is used elsewhere in a context that makes its meaning clear, or because only one of the permissible meanings produces a substantive effect that is compatible with the rest of the law.”

In Edgar v. MITE Corp., 457 U.S. 624 (1982), the Supreme Court ruled: “A state statute is void to the extent that it actually conflicts with a valid Federal statute.” In effect, this means that a State law will be found to violate the supremacy clause when either of the following two conditions (or both) exist:[3]

  1. Compliance with both the Federal and State laws is impossible, or
  2. “…state law stands as an obstacle to the accomplishment and execution of the full purposes and objectives of Congress…”

Supreme Court – FINAL Ruling – Plain Meaning – No Jiggery Pokery
47 Pages, view our highlights, annotations & bookmarks

Resources & Links

Wikipedia  PDF Congressional Research Service on plain meaning rule

Our webpage on mandated privacy notices – scroll down to section on writing in plain English.

California Civil Code 1635 et seq – Interpretation of Contracts

Caminetti_v._United_States

Thomas v Quintero

Georgetown University 21 pages on how to read, interpret and apply statutes

Parol Evidence Rule Wikipedia – Contract stands by itself – can’t bring up discussions or agreements that were prior to actually signing the written Contract

Related Web Pages

King V Burwell Subsidies Held in Health Care.Gov 

 

 

 

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