The Intelligible Contract

Date
2020-01-07
Authors
Cervone, Luca
Palmirani, Monica
Vitali, Fabio
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Abstract
This paper introduces a novel model of legal digital contracts automatically executable on Blockchain technologies. Legally enforceable and automatically executable digital contracts are receiving a renewed interest, mostly due to the increasing attention towards Blockchain technologies. However, current implementations of digital contracts are still far from being intelligible to humans, because of their differences with traditional written contracts. The main purpose of this paper is to provide a contribution in bridging the gap between traditional contracts and digital contracts towards the goal of making them intelligible and legal valid. Firstly, after highlighting the shortcomings in current technologies when used for legal digital contracts, the paper introduces a new generic specification for legal digital contracts, namely the Intelligible Contract. Secondly, we describe our implementation of Intelligible Contracts and, as a proof of feasibility, we model a simple scenario by means of our implementation. The paper concludes with some ideas for future research on Intelligible Contracts.
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Blockchain, DLT, Tokenization, and Digital Government, decentralized web technologies, legal digital contracts, legal informatics, ricardian contracts, smart contracts
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