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Recital (law)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

In law, a recital (from Latin: recitare, "to read out"[1]) consists of an account or repetition of the details of some act, proceeding or fact. Particularly, in law, that part of a legal document—such as a lease, which contains a statement of certain facts—contains the purpose for which the deed is made.[2]

In European Union law, a recital is a text that sets out reasons for the provisions of an enactment, while avoiding normative language and political argumentation.[3] A recital may also appear at the end of a document,[citation needed] as some 173 do in the General Data Protection Regulation.[citation needed][failed verification] Recitals have been demonstrated to play a limited role in the interpretation of Union legislation in the courts in the case of ambiguity in a particular provision within the legislation.[4]

In English, by convention, most recitals start with the word Whereas.

A recital can, and should, be taken into account when interpreting the meaning of a contractual agreement.[5][full citation needed]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Recite". The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language (4th ed.). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. 2008.
  2. ^ "Recital". A law dictionary: adapted to the Constitution and laws of the United States of America, and of the several states of the American union, with references to the civil and other systems of foreign law. Vol. II (15th ed.). Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott. 1883. pp. 517–518.
  3. ^ "Recitals". European Union. Archived from the original on 2011-03-17. Retrieved 2011-05-09.
  4. ^ Klimas, Tadas; Vaiciukaite, Jurate (July 14, 2008). "The Law of Recitals in European Community Legislation". ILSA Journal of International & Comparative Law. 15. SSRN 1159604.
  5. ^ "Standstill agreements: lessons in drafting from (1) Exsus Travel Limited (2) Coronation Limited v (1) Baker Tilly (2) Baker Tilly Audit LLP [2016] EWHC 2818 (Ch)", accessed 27 December 2016