The first permanent system of codified laws could be found in Imperial China [note 1], with the compilation of the Tang code in 624 AD. This is the basis of the Chinese penal code, which was eventually replaced by the Great Code of Qing Law, itself abolished in 1912 after the Xinhai Revolution and the creation of the Republic of China. The new laws of the Republic of China were inspired by the German codified work, the Civil Code. A very influential example in Europe was the French Napoleonic Code of 1804. Recoding refers to a process in which existing codified statutes are reformatted and rewritten into a new codified structure. This is often necessary, as the legislative process to amend laws and the legal process of interpreting laws results over time in a code containing archaic terms, replaced texts, and redundant or contradictory statutes. Because of the size of a typical government code, the legislative process of recoding a code can often take a decade or more. Common law has been codified in many jurisdictions and in many legal areas: examples are criminal laws in many jurisdictions and include the California Civil Code and the Consolidated Statutes of New York (New York State). The rules and regulations adopted by the agencies of the executive branch of the United States federal government are codified in the form of a federal regulatory code. These provisions are approved by specific enabling laws of the legislature and generally have the same force as the law. The provisions contained therein do not constitute a complete agreement and must be attached to a document performed by all parties, which lists the specific work to be performed, the remuneration, the duration of the contract, the integrated annexes and, where applicable, the special conditions (“basic agreement”). In addition, some laws of Congress, such as provisions relating to the date of entry into force of amendments to codified laws, are not codified at all.
These statutes can be found by referring to the legal acts published in the “Slip Law” and “Session Law” forms. However, commercial publications specializing in legal matters often organize and print uncoded statutes with the codes they return. By definition, civil courts rely on codification. The Lithuanian statutes of the sixteenth century were a very remarkable example. The codification movement gained momentum during the Light Years and was implemented in several European countries at the end of the eighteenth century (see Civil Code). But it only spread after the adoption of the French Napoleonic Code (1804), which strongly influenced the legal systems of many other countries. Most English criminal laws have been codified, not least because it allows for accuracy and security in prosecutions. However, the broad areas of common law, such as contract law and infringement law, remain remarkably intact. Over the past 80 years, there have been laws dealing with immediate problems such as the Frustrated Contracts Act 1943 (the .