· The full-text database containing more than 11,000 U.S. treaties and international agreements, as well as 1,800 bilateral tax treaties of 185 countries (also known as pacts, protocols, acquired, conventions, pacts or charters) are international agreements between states and/or international organizations. Treaties are the main sources of international law. Here is a guide to finding contracts. Conventional international law is based on the approval of States Parties and, as such, the treaty applies only between those parties. To determine the application of the contract, be careful of reservations, agreements and declarations that may alter the obligations of that state. Treaties bind non-persons only if they form the basis of customary international law. International customary law arises when states act coherently in a certain way (state practice) from a sense of legal obligation (opinio juris). State practice includes national legislation, regulations, contracts, judicial decisions, diplomatic communications, NGO and IGO practices (e.B.g.
General Assembly decisions and state voting practices). Look at court decisions and executive releases to see evidence of opinio juris. A state can evade the application of international customary law by being a stubborn denial. Treaties can be designated by a number of names: international conventions, international agreements, alliances, final acts, charters, declarations of intent, protocols, pacts, agreements and constitutions for international organizations. Normally, these different names have no legal value in international law (see the following section for the difference in U.S. law). Contracts can be bilateral (two parties) or multilateral (between several parties) and a contract generally involves only the contracting parties. An agreement enters into force if the entry-into-force conditions set out in the agreement are met. Bilateral agreements generally come into force when both parties agree to be linked from a given date. The Vienna Convention on Treaty Law (.pdf) defines a treaty as “an international agreement concluded in writing between states and governed by international law, whether it appears in a single act or in two or more related acts, regardless of its particular name.” This study is part of a larger project to lay the groundwork for comparisons between legal frameworks for ratification of international treaties in different legal systems.