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responsabilidades civiles y penales

Discussion in 'Legal Terminology' started by Belen13, May 6, 2010.

  1. Belen13 Senior Member

    English
    my lack of legal knowledge forces me to post yet another legal question on this forum:

    y así perseguir las responsabilidades civiles y penales que pudiesen existir entre las autoridades de la época.

    and thus were able to prosecute the civil and criminal liabilities that existed between the authorities at that time...

    does this sound like complete codswallop to legally trained ears?

    thank you!!!
     
  2. Iuris Tantum

    Iuris Tantum Senior Member

    Juneau
    Mexican Spanish
    and therefore,

    might have existed among
     
  3. Belen13 Senior Member

    English
    thanks Iuris,

    you are right to correct "might have existed", I missed that one, not too much difference between thus and therefore but yes, may sound better here.

    However, what I really want confirming is my title query of responsabilidades civiles y penales if anyone could help
     
  4. Iuris Tantum

    Iuris Tantum Senior Member

    Juneau
    Mexican Spanish
    Last edited: May 6, 2010
  5. Belen13 Senior Member

    English
    me has ayudado mucho, gracias Iuris
     
  6. RicardoElAbogado Senior Member

    SF Bay Area, California
    American English
    Having Googled "codswallop" and found out that it is a Britishism for nonsense, I can tell you that the entire phrase sounds like complete codswallop to (US) legally trained ears.

    The expression in the title, civil and criminal liabilities, is fine. I am at a loss to understand "that existed between the authorities at that time" in conjunction with "civil and criminal liabilities. "
     
  7. Belen13 Senior Member

    English
    thanks Ricardo, hopefully you are referring to the original and not to my translation?

    more context is: Es así como, el directorio de XXX demandó al Estado de Chile por los perjuicios financieros ocasionados y así perseguir las responsabilidades civiles y penales que pudiesen existir entre las autoridades de la época.

    I am also at a bit of a loss with this one, legal ears or not! cant you prosecute civil and criminal liabilities that might have existed between authorities at that time? it is referring to a companies manipulation of legal system for private benefit...
     
  8. Cele K Junior Member

    U.S
    Spanish - Argentina
    That smells like arbitration proceedings to me.
    Sometimes lawyers (at least in Argentina) can be awful drafters and make no sense at all on their phrases...

    (*****************)


    I would say:
    " XXX Board of Directors sued the Chilean (State/Government o lo que estés usando) for the financial damage caused thereto, seeking action for any civil and criminal responsibility on the part of the then State's/Government's authorities"

    Yo diría:
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2010
  9. Belen13 Senior Member

    English
    thanks Cele, you're right, the original is really confusing and badly written (I think) and there are many parts I can't make head or tail of and I don't think it's just the lack of legal knowledge!

    and you're right, I need to not translate literally but at the same time I can't go too far from the original obviously, bad as it is...
     
  10. Iuris Tantum

    Iuris Tantum Senior Member

    Juneau
    Mexican Spanish
    for the financial damage caused thereto, prosecuting civil and criminal responsibility on the part of the then State's/Government's authorities"
     
  11. Cele K Junior Member

    U.S
    Spanish - Argentina
    Perseguir responsabilidades aparece USADO en español aunque no coloque y por eso YO eligiría usarlo... pero no viene en todo caso al caso porque está en el original y no se cambia.

    Ahora en cuanto a la traducción... "prosecute" RESPONSIBILITIES? You prosecute an action, proceeding (according to the definitions) but not responsibilities. No aparece en ninguna página, al menos de Estados Unidos.

    Yo usaría otro verbo.
     
  12. RicardoElAbogado Senior Member

    SF Bay Area, California
    American English
    The term "prosecute" is in fact used from time to time with civil matters, just not that often compared to its usage in criminal contexts. Unlike the term "prosecute" in connection with criminal cases, in which a person is prosecuted, the term "prosecute" in connection with civil matters, it is the case or matter that is prosecuted, and in this context (the context of a civil matter) it means "pursued."

    In California (and some other states) "failure to prosecute" will lead to dismissal of a civil case. For example, California has a statute, which provides that a failure to bring a case to trial within five years of filing it will allow the defendant to have the case dismissed (with prejudice, meaning it can not be refiled). The statute is at Code of Civil Procedure section 583.310. The term that lawyers and judges almost invariably use to refer to a motion under that section is "failure to prosecute."

    The term "prosecute" is also used in other contexts besides litigation. For example, it is used in connection with patent applications, and it refers to taking the steps after filing the application to get the patent issued.

    It is also used quite a bit in contracts in connection with curing breaches. It is common in drafting contracts to say that if Party A is in breach, Party B can give notice to Party A that Party A must cure the breach or Party B will be permitted to terminate the contract and sue for damages. If a party can not cure the breach immediately, a contract often provides that the party can cure the breach by commencing the cure immediately (or within some stated time) provided that the party "diligently prosecutes the cure to completion."

    Webster's Third New International Dictionary, which is not only reliable but also the most authoritative dictionary short of the Oxford English Dictionary (and perhaps more authoritative as to American English) gives several definitions for "prosecute."

    One definition it gives is "to follow to the end; to press to execution or completion; pursue until finished." This is the understanding that is meant when a civil case is dismissed for failure to prosecute or when prosecuting a patent application or when prosecuting a cure diligently to completion.

    Another definition is "to institute legal proceedings against; esp to accuse of some crime or violation of law in due legal form before a legal tribunal." This is the understanding that is meant when a person is prosecuted.

    The word "prosecution" immediately suggests most people a criminal proceeding against a person (and in some cases against a company), but that is not the only meaning or usage of the word. Therefore, I recommend against using that word in this context. I recommend using "pursue." After all, one can not prosecute the government. One can pursue remedies against the government. And "puruse" is one of the accepted translations for "perseguir."

    Ha! It's not just in Argentina, I can assure you of that!!!

    The quoted phrase does not make sense in English.

    "Penal" in Spanish according to my dictionary means "penal" in English. Penal and criminal are two different concepts. If the same is true in Spanish, and I believe it is, the original text was not carefully written (to say the least).

    A citizen or company can not pursue criminal penalties against the government. Against indviduals who misbehave perhaps, but not against the state itself. It makes no sense to say that they can. What government allows itself to be prosecuted or penalized by the citizens or companies???
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2010
  13. Cele K Junior Member

    U.S
    Spanish - Argentina
    That is exactly what I was thinking... that is why I would totally avoid prosecute in this context, EVEN THOUGH perseguir is being used (awfully) in Spanish for responsabilidades here. If abogados in El Salvador like to "perseguir responsabilidades", responsibilities are not "prosecuted" in English...

    Keep in mind the quote is most likely from an arbitration case.
     

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