SINGULAR DECREES AND PRECEPTS
Can. 48 A singular decree is an administrative act issued by a competent executive authority in which a decision is given or a provision is made for a particular case according to the norms of law. Of their nature, these decisions or provisions do not presuppose a petition made by someone.
Can. 49 A singular precept is a decree which directly and legitimately enjoins a specific person or persons to do or omit something, especially in order to urge the observance of law.
Can. 50 Before issuing a singular decree, an authority is to seek out the necessary information and proofs and, insofar as possible, to hear those whose rights can be injured.
Can. 51 A decree is to be issued in writing, with the reasons at least summarily expressed if it is a decision.
Can. 52 A singular decree has force only in respect to the matters which it decides and for the persons for whom it was given. It obliges these persons everywhere, however, unless it is otherwise evident.
Can. 53 If decrees are contrary to one another, a particular decree prevails over a general in those matters which are specifically expressed. If they are equally particular or equally general, the decree later in time modifies the earlier to the extent that the later one is contrary to it.
Can. 54 §1. A singular decree whose application is entrusted to an executor takes effect from the moment of execution; otherwise, from the moment it is made known to the person by the authority of the one who issued it.
§2. To be enforced, a singular decree must be made known by a legitimate document according to the norm of law.
Can. 55 Without prejudice to the prescripts of cann. 37 and 51, when a very grave reason prevents the handing over of the written text of a decree, the decree is considered to have been made known if it is read to the person to whom it is destined in the presence of a notary or two witnesses. After a written record of what has occurred has been prepared, all those present must sign it.
Can. 56 A decree is considered to have been made known if the one for whom it is destined has been properly summoned to receive or hear the decree but, without a just cause, did not appear or refused to sign.
Can. 57 §1. Whenever the law orders a decree to be issued or an interested party legitimately proposes a petition or recourse to obtain a decree, the competent authority is to provide for the matter within three months from the receipt of the petition or recourse unless the law prescribes some other time period.
§2. When this time period has passed, if the decree has not yet been given, the response is presumed to be negative with respect to the presentation of further recourse.
§3. A presumed negative response does not exempt the competent authority from the obligation of issuing the decree and even of repairing the damage possibly incurred, according to the norm of can. 128.
Can. 58 §1. A singular decree ceases to have force through legitimate revocation by competent authority as well as through cessation of the law for whose execution it was given.
§2. A singular precept not imposed by a legitimate document ceases when the authority of the one who issued it expires.