Agreements Soft Law

The term „soft law“ refers to quasi-legal instruments that do not have legally binding force or whose obligation is somewhat weaker than the binding nature of traditional law, often in contrast to soft law by calling them a „hard law“. [1] Traditionally, the term „soft law“ is linked to international law, although it has recently been transposed into other areas of national law. Soft Law is attractive because it often contains ambitious goals that aim for the best possible scenarios. However, the language in many soft law documents may be contradictory, not being coordinated with existing legal obligations and perhaps doubling existing legal or political processes. Another important point is that the parties to the negotiations are not blind to the hidden potential in the soft law. If a party to the negotiations feels that soft law has the potential to do something binding on the way, it will have a negative impact on the negotiation process, and soft law instruments will be watered down and put in place by so many restrictions that it doesn`t make much sense to create them. Soft law instruments are generally regarded as non-binding agreements, but they have great potential to become a „hard right“ in the future. This „hardening“ of the soft law can be done in two different ways. On the one hand, declarations, recommendations, etc., are the first step towards a contracting process that refers to the principles already defined in soft law instruments.

Another possibility is that non-contractual agreements have a direct impact on state practice and, to the extent that they succeed, may lead to the creation of customary law. Soft law is a convenient option for negotiations that might otherwise become bogged down if legally binding commitments were sought at a time when the negotiating parties are not comfortable making larger commitments at some point for political and/or economic reasons, but in the meantime wish to negotiate in good faith. Soft law is also seen as a flexible option – it avoids the immediate and uncompromising commitment made under treaties and is also seen as a potentially faster path to legal obligations than the slow pace of international law. Over time, in today`s globalized society, it is easy to use the media and the internet to disseminate knowledge about the content of statements and commitments made at international conferences. Yet these sought-after non-commitments often capture the imagination of citizens who begin to believe in these soft instruments of law as if they were legal instruments. On the other hand, it is estimated that this will ultimately have an impact on governments that are forced to take into account the wishes of citizens, NGOs, organizations, courts and even companies that are beginning to refer to these soft law instruments so often and with such importance that they begin to prove legal standards. In the context of international law, the concept of „soft law“ includes such elements as: nevertheless, dependence on soft law continues and its use is unlikely to contract; it is much more likely to be used in greater quantities, as it also serves as a „testing ground“ for new and innovative ideas, for which policy formulations are still being developed in a world of rapid change and controversial future challenges such as climate change.