Is english.stackexchange.com the right place to ask about how English is used (or abused) in legal documents?

I'm still trying to wrap my head around how some "and" and "or" are sometimes used with opposing implied meaning in legal documents and laws.

2 Answers 2


It depends on the question. If it's really a question about law that belongs on the — hypothetical, at this point — Law SE site, and you're only asking because the law in question happens to be written in English, I'd say it doesn't belong. If it's about the usage of language itself, then it does belong, and I'm interested already.

So, the quick test: if the law/bill/contract/whatever were written in Chinese, would you still want to ask your question? If so, it doesn't belong on this site; if not, ask away!


I recall seeing at least one question purely about legal documents, which was rather vague and not really limited to English, but it survived. Your question seems to be more specific, so if anything, it is less likely to get closed.

If you have an example of peculiar English usage, I don't see a reason for you not to post it. And if it's taken from an actual law (rather than, say, from a presentation by some law student), then go ahead and post it right now, you've sparked my interest for sure.

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