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catalogue – 43669
Until 01.01.2019 - Scientific Yearbook of the Institute of Philosophy and Law of the Ural Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences

ISSN 2686-7206 (Print)

ISSN 2686-925X (Оnlinе)

Tereshchenko Dmitry
Modern legislation does not contain a clear definition of the concept of “legal liability”. This is due to the presence of many author's points of view and opinions, where the definitions differ in meaning, and also have a wide range of embedded meanings. This situation leads to an ambiguous understanding or to an unjustified expansion of the interpretation due to the unjustified association of legal responsibility with other similar social and legal concepts and phenomena. As a result, there are discrepancies in law enforcement practice. The article considers the shortcomings of the concept of a single legal liability, justifies the impossibility of combining positive and negative liability. Due to the fact that the legal literature has repeatedly concluded that it is necessary to conduct additional theoretical research to solve this problem, the author made an attempt to rethink the traditional view in this matter. In addition to general scientific methods of cognition, broader theoretical approaches to understanding the phenomenon of responsibility are proposed. First, responsibility is considered as a functional characteristic of the interaction of the elements that form its semantic content. Secondly, the concept is studied from the standpoint of dimensionality, i.e., from the point of view of the ability of a concept to have multiple values (dimensions), depending on the number of selected keywords that are included in the definition of the concept. Thus, the definition of legal responsibility, on the example of criminal responsibility, is considered at two levels of abstraction: at the first level as a measure of responsibility; at the second-as the relationship between punishment and crime, which act as a fixed act (fact) or committed action. Based on the conducted structural research, the author's definition is formulated, which allows combining the main number of existing points of view and opinions on the definition of liability into a single principle (rule) of legal liability. For the first time, the concept of legal responsibility is considered as a logical and mathematical model that allows interpreting the legal concept based on the provisions of differential calculus. From a practical point of view, the use of extended methodological approaches should serve to organize various opinions into a single semantic understanding of legal responsibility. In the context of the widespread digitalization of law, the proposed methodology allows creating formalized structures of derived concepts used in various branches of law.
Keywords: legal responsibility; problems of the theory of law; criminal responsibility; the concept of positive and negative responsibility; formalization of law; definition of responsibility; dimension of the concept; category of interaction; measure of responsibility; derived characteristics of action; problems of the methodology of law; ability; opportunity; duty.


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