As word in ordinary expression, one word in English legal documents may also have different meanings. But a certain word should only have one specific meaning in special context. Such as the word “good”, it has various meanings in legal document. “A good contract” means 有效合同; “goodwill” means 商誉 instead of 善意. Following are more examples:

Neglect of duty is good cause for removal of a trustee.


“Good cause” means legally sufficient reason.

The Vendor shall procure that the Purchaser acquires good title to the Shares free from all charges, liens, encumbrances, equities and claims whatsoever.


“Good title” indicates title that is legally valid and effective.

Now therefore, in consideration of the premises, and the representations, warranties, covenants, and undertakings of the parties hereinafter set forth, and for other good and valuable consideration, the parties agree among themselves as follows.


“Good consideration” is equal for consideration that is valid under the law. Sometimes, good consideration also means valuable consideration.

Read Also: Ellipsis and Repetition in E-C Legal Translation

If any term or provision of this Agreement shall become or be declared illegal, invalid or unenforceable for any reason whatsoever, such term or provision shall be severed from this Agreement shall be deemed to be deleted from this Agreement; provided that if such deletion materially affects or alters the basis of this Agreement, the parties shall negotiate in good faith to amend and modify the provisions and terms of this Agreement as may be necessary or desirable in the circumstances.


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“good faith” means honesty, fairness and lawfulness of purpose.

Therefore, the key point is to understand the exact meaning of that word in certain context. In this way, it is reasonable to choose a suitable Chinese word or phrase in translation.

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