Finnish Private Law: Statutory System Without a Civil Code

  • Teemu JuutilainenEmail author
Part of the Ius Gentium: Comparative Perspectives on Law and Justice book series (IUSGENT, volume 32)


Finland counts as a civil law jurisdiction, but Finnish private law is not based on a comprehensive civil code. As in the other Nordic countries, codification of private law has taken place in the form of statutes, that is, various individual acts. General principles and other contents of the “general part” of private law are largely uncodified and will most likely remain so. The absence of a civil code and a comprehensive statutory general part leaves the system of private law open-ended, which accounts for several aspects of the Finnish overall approach to private law. These concern interpretation and application of law, the relative weight of different sources of law, the role of legal science, and the openness of law to external influence. Despite the absence of a civil code, Finnish lawyers perceive domestic private law as a systematic whole, a doctrinal structure. Systematisation is entrusted to legal science, rather than predetermined by legislation.


Finland Nordic countries Private law Civil law Statutory law Systematisation Uncodified models 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Law, Centre of Excellence in European Law and Polity (Finland)University of HelsinkiHelsinkiFinland

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