I was reading a contract and I found this usage of "be able to" very unfamiliar.

If during the execution of the Project any product from which intellectual and/or industrial property may arise, the Receiving Party shall immediately inform X of the content of such rights. These rights shall belong exclusively to X, being able the latter to register in the corresponding Registers as the owner of such rights.

I guess it's just an inversion of "X being able to" but I'm not so sure. I googled this and I think it's a bit old and probably not common.

  • ...being able the latter to register ..? Is the intended meaning, ...enabling the latter to register....? If so, that sense is not here. If I were, I would write is as, “During the project execution if any product that qualifies intellectual and/or industrial property rights arises, the receiving party shall immediately inform X of such contents/details. These rights shall belong exclusively to X who can register the ownership rights in the …. registers.
    – Ram Pillai
    Jan 27, 2021 at 12:24

2 Answers 2


Its just bad drafting. I think it is as simple as that, not a matter of age. The world is full of very poorly drafted legal documents.


I believe this is an archaic construction preserved in legalese. Simply googling the term "being able the latter to" turns up tons of examples, all in contract language. This appears to be substituted where the vernacular usage would be something like "if the latter is able to."

Edit: On further consideration, the phrase seems to be "making able" and the converse "not being able the latter" means "making unable."

"In the measure in which the proportion granted by Fondo increased,the rate of interest to be charged to the commercial institution increased too, not being able the latter to charge its clients in transactions more than 12% per year."

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