AbstractThe aim of the paper is to present the concept of normative dereification of animals. Since 1997 Poland has been one of the countries which decided to build their animal protection system on the foundation of distinction of animals from objects. As stated in article 1 paragraph 1 of the Polish Animal Protection Act 1997 the animal as a living being, capable of suffering is not a thing. The author analyses the meaning of the regulation, its actual impact over the years and discusses related interpretative difficulties. In the author's view most importantly dereification provision should be seen as source of a specific interpretative directive. Thus, significant part of the paper has been devoted to the analysis of available court rulings addressing dereification and recognising existence of dereification-based directive of interpretation which has to be applied in cases involving animals.
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