Severability

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Severability

A clause in a contract stating that if one clause in the contract is ruled illegal or unenforceable, the remainder of the contract remains in effect. Severability exists to protect the counterparties to the contract from the possibility that the whole contract will be ruled invalid. This is especially important if one or both parties must spend money in the execution of the contract. A contract without a severability clause could be declared entirely invalid if a single section is declared invalid. It is also called a savings clause.
References in periodicals archive ?
286, 290 (1924) (stating that a severability clause "provides a rule of construction which may sometimes aid in determining [legislative] intent.
(112) Second, although SOX lacked a severability clause, Chief Justice Roberts construed that silence as congressional acquiescence, saying that "nothing in the statute's text or historical context makes it 'evident' that Congress, faced with the limitations imposed by the Constitution, would have preferred no Board at all to a Board whose members are removable at will." (113) He then rejected other possible modifications to the statute, such as altering the PCAOB's statutory responsibilities "so that its members would no longer be 'Officers of the United States'" or "restricting] the [PCAOB's] enforcement powers," as "far more extensive than" the chosen remedy of severing the removal restriction.
(59) Moreover, because Alaska Airlines adopted a presumption of severability, and the absence of a severability clause does not affect that presumption, it is unclear what work, if any, the insertion of a severability clause in a statute does.
The arbitration agreement in Gessa did not contain a severability clause. (224) It further reasoned that the Supreme Court based its ruling on non-severability upon the combination of the two limitation-of-liability provisions, "when viewed jointly." (225) It then explained that "[n]either case [stood] for the proposition that an invalid punitive damages provision in an arbitration agreement, standing alone, is not severable because it goes to the heart of the agreement." (226)
severability clause. The appeals court relied on Supreme Court precedent
See, if the mandate--even by itself- is ruled unconstitutional, the law's lack of a severability clause would invalidate the entire piece of legislation.
District Judge Roger Vinson, who had found the entire law unconstitutional because the individual mandate was "inextricably bound together" with the rest of the law and because Congress had failed to include a severability clause in the law.
To illustrate this vagueness problem of the severability clause,
Vinson says he did not try to separate the individual insurance ownership mandate from the rest of PPACA because it appeared that Congress had made an active decision to delete a severability clause from the act.
Florida ruling: Lack of severability clause important
But because there is a severability clause, some aspects of the Arizona law are likely to survive, including the provision that creates a new crime for stopping a motor vehicle to pick up a day laborer and the portion that allows citizens to sue the state government if it interferes with enforcement of immigration laws.