Rule of Fair Import

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Under the Rule of Fair Import, courts have the authority to interpret statutes in a way that does not frustrate the legislative purpose. Most courts have adopted this flexible standard rather than strict construction of codes. At the same time, fair import is limited by the legality principle.

The Model Penal Code Section 1.02 Purposes: Principles of Construction states that "The Provisions of the Code shall be construed according to the fair import of their terms but when the language is susceptible of differing constructions it shall be interpreted to further the general purposes stated in this Section and the special purposes of the particular provisions involved."[1]


  1. Model Penal Code Section 1.02(3)