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Thread: Need help with a legal phrase

 
  1. #11
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    Default Re: Need help with a legal phrase

    Thanks Magdalena:

    It all makes sense now. Petitions of course, are legal documents but not in rough draft and I suspected that the document was written by an individual who did not necessarily know legal jargon.

    Your query provides proof that we cannot assume that a document is a legal document written in legal language just because a request is made under the heading of "legal". There are many informal writings, such as your rough draft, that are of a legal nature but are not legal documents and some, such as handwritten petitions and statements that are legal because they have been notarized or accepted by a court even though they are not written in legal language.
    vicente

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    Default Re: Need help with a legal phrase

    So, from what I understand, the phrase in question came from the draft in Spanish that the petitioner made and from safety valve he got válvula de escape...and he was right.

    And what I'm learning here is that safety valve is a legal term that seems to provide the person with some sort of protection.

    I think the problem here is that none of us recognized the phrase as a legal term, and therefore couldn't see how it fit the sentence. Now, I'm left wondering what the real legal term for safety valve would be in Spanish.

    Good thing you had the original document
    Last edited by Cotty; 01-17-2011 at 10:04 AM.

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    Default Re: Need help with a legal phrase

    Hi Cotty

    No, I don't think "safety valve" and "valvula de escape" are legal terms per se, rather they appear to be colloquialisms being used in a legal matter. Xóchitl L posted that he went to law school in Mexico and never heard of "valvula de escape" and I have never heard "safety valve" used as a legal term in English. As I understood Magadlena's explanation, the terms were used informally in writings found among court papers.
    vicente

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    Default Re: Need help with a legal phrase

    Hi Vicente

    First of all, I hope you don't get all deffensive as some people in this forum sometimes get when you try to fully understand something. One of the reasons I am here is to learn, and everything I say is always in the vein of understanding and adding to my knowledge.
    As I understood Magadlena's explanation, the terms were used informally in writings found among court papers.
    That's not what I got from what she said. The only informal doc that was mentioned here was the draft made by the petitioner.
    I was able to find the phrase in the gentleman's Court paperwork. I will quote part of the sentence here: "The defense took the position that the Proffer was satisfactory for
    "safety valve" purposes".
    .............
    When I made the request I had forgotten that I had copies of the Court proceedings. I went to them and read the part that was consistent with the spanish wording..It is indeed SAFETY VALVE.
    IMHO court paperwork & copies of work proceedings do qualify as legal docs.

    However, you might be right in that the terms are not legal terms in that they do not involve legal concepts. So my conclusion is that safety valve=válvula de escape, in both languages can refer to a way out of some problem and even though it sounds like a colloquial expression, it can also used in formal writing. Which is similar to your comment
    No, I don't think "safety valve" and "valvula de escape" are legal terms per se, rather they appear to be colloquialisms being used in a legal matter.
    It still calls my attention though, that they would use a colloquial term in such type of writing, maybe, just maybe, there is a possibility that it is indeed also a legal term.
    Regards,
    Last edited by Cotty; 02-11-2011 at 07:34 PM.

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    Default Re: Need help with a legal phrase

    Hello All,
    I googled: Legal proceeding: safety valve and this is what I got from Wikipedia..
    Safety valve (law)

    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Jump to: navigation, search
    The safety valve is a provision in the Sentencing Reform Act and the United States Federal Sentencing Guidelines that authorizes a sentence below the statutory minimum for certain nonviolent, non-managerial **** offenders with little or no criminal history.[1][2]
    [edit] References


    1. ^ 18 U.S.C. § 3553(f)
    2. ^ U.S.S.G. §5C1. Now we need the official Legal translation of it..It seems to me that valvula de escape was what was used by the Interpreter in Federal Court.

  6. #16
    Senior Member Xóchitl L.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Need help with a legal phrase

    No cabe duda que todos los días se aprende algo nuevo. Estoy fascinada con este foro y con sus participantes tan comprometidos a sacar adelante el proyecto de alguien más.

    Muchas gracias a todos...

    Xóchitl L.

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    Thumbs up Re: Need help with a legal phrase

    I wanted to add this also:

    http://dc.fd.org/sentencing/Sentence...on%20Guide.pdf

    This is under the heading SENTENCE REDUCERS and gives more detail.

    I still wonder about the "Valvula de Escape" and if this was the proper translation of Safety Valve...

    Magdalena

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    Default Re: Need help with a legal phrase

    Quote Originally Posted by magdalena View Post
    I wanted to add this also:

    http://dc.fd.org/sentencing/Sentence...on%20Guide.pdf

    This is under the heading SENTENCE REDUCERS and gives more detail.

    I still wonder about the "Valvula de Escape" and if this was the proper translation of Safety Valve...

    Magdalena
    Well Magadalena, it would seem we caused more work for you than we provided in assistance.

    Hi Cotty: No, no...I do not mind being questioned since I have been wrong before and our goal is to provide accurate information. As I said at the start of this thread, I should have waited for one of our legal translators to get into this. Legal translations can be risky.

    Some of our best discussions often come from this kind of exchange which forces research. Maybe somebody will find the answer to whether "valvula de escape" is the proper translation (legal, that is).
    vicente

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    Talking Re: Need help with a legal phrase

    Thank you again Vicente and all who did your best to help.

    I am a former Interpreter in Family Court but my cases were all child support related so I never came across this type of jargon.

    I most definitely would like to hear what the true translation of the phrase would be, just out of curiosity and in case I should ever have to do something like this again.

    I didn't mind searching at all since it gives us all more knowledge.

    Magdalena















  10. #20
    Senior Member Xóchitl L.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Need help with a legal phrase

    Rondando por el foro regresé a este tema y no me quise quedar con la duda sobre el significado de "válvula de escape"; sobretodo por ser un reto para mí como pasante de la carrera de Derecho en México. Encontré que éste es un sinónimo de "loophole", término muy común y que yo también usaba en México; o sea, "vacío o laguna legal". Creo que ya con esta traducción quedo conforme. ¿Uds. qué opinan?

    Loophole:

    An omission or Ambiguity in a legal document that allows the intent of the document to be evaded.

    Loopholes come into being through the passage of statutes, the enactment of regulations, the drafting of contracts or the decisions of courts. A loophole allows an individual or group to use some gap in the restrictions or requirements of the law or contract for personal advantage without technically breaking the law or contract. In response, lawmakers and regulators work to pass reforms that will close the loophole. For example, in the federal tax code, a long-standing loophole was the socalled tax shelter, which allowed taxpayers to reduce their tax debt by making investments. Although not closed entirely, this loophole was substantially reduced by the tax reform act of 1986 (Pub. L. No. 99-514, 100 Stat. 2085 [codified as amended in numerous sections of 26 U.S.C.A.]).

    Loopholes exist because it is impossible to foresee every circumstance or course of conduct that will arise under, or in response to, the law. Loopholes often endure for a time because they can be difficult to close. Those who benefit from a loophole will lobby legislators or regulators to leave the loophole open. In the case of Election Campaign Financing, it is the legislators themselves who benefit. The Federal Election Campaign Act Amendments of 1974 (Pub. L. No. 93-443, 88 Stat. 1263 [1974] [codified as amended in scattered sections of 2 U.S.C.A. §§ 431–455 (1988)]) were passed to limit private financing of federal election campaigns. But loopholes in the law allow these limits to be circumvented. Through one loophole, intermediaries can pool or "bundle" contributions so that the limit is not legally exceeded. Through another, money raised specifically for building political parties (soft money) is funneled into campaigns.

    loophole noun alternative, aperture, contrivance, device, escape clause, escape hatch, escape valve, exception, excuse, expedient, foramen, means of escape, mechanism for evasion, opening, outlet, saving clause, uncommunicativeness, vehicle for escape, way of escape, way out, etc.

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