The general rule is that the word “shall” is presumed mandatory when it appears in a statute. This presumption, however, is subject to rebuttal. Occasionally, the court has construed shall as a directive, rather than a mandate. State v. Cox, 2018 WI 67
, 382 Wis. 2d 338
, 913 N.W.2d 780
The use of the definite article “the" in front of the second use of a phrase makes clear that it is referencing the antecedent phase already mentioned. Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors of Great Lakes Quick Lube LP v. Theisen, 2018 WI App 70
, 384 Wis. 2d 580
, 920 N.W.2d 356
A required tax payment may be made on the next secular day when July 31 is on Saturday and office hours are unofficial. 60 Atty. Gen. 411.
Computing time in tort statutes of limitation. Ghiardi. 64 MLR 575 (1981).
Legislative History: The Philosophies of Justices Scalia and Breyer and the Use of Legislative History by the Wisconsin State Courts. Dortzbach. 80 MLR 161 (1997).
Interpreting Wisconsin Statutes. Suhr. 100 MLR 969 (2017).
Researching legislative intent in Wisconsin: A suggested procedure. Nispel. WBB Apr. 1983.
Computing Time in Statutes of Limitation. Ghiardi. Wis. Law. Mar. 1993.
Construction of laws; words and phrases.
In the construction of Wisconsin laws the words and phrases which follow shall be construed as indicated unless such construction would produce a result inconsistent with the manifest intent of the legislature:
All words and phrases shall be construed according to common and approved usage; but technical words and phrases and others that have a peculiar meaning in the law shall be construed according to such meaning.
“Acquire," when used in connection with a grant of power to any person, includes the acquisition by purchase, grant, gift or bequest. It includes the power to condemn only in the cases specified in s. 32.02
and subject to the limitations under s. 32.015
“Adult" means a person who has attained the age of 18 years, except that for purposes of investigating or prosecuting a person who is alleged to have violated any state or federal criminal law or any civil law or municipal ordinance, “adult" means a person who has attained the age of 17 years.
Bequest and bequeath.
“Bequest" includes a devise; “bequeath" includes devise.
“Chiropractor" means a person holding a license issued by the chiropractic examining board.
“Communicable disease" means any disease that the department of health services determines, by rule, to be communicable in fact.
Controlled access highway.
“Controlled access highway" means a highway on which abutting property owners have no right or only a limited right of direct access and on which the type and location of all access connections are determined and controlled by the highway authorities.
“County board" means the county board of supervisors.
Express highway or expressway.
An express highway or expressway is a divided arterial highway for through traffic with “full" or “partial" control of access and generally with grade separations at intersections. “Full" control of access means that the authority to control access is exercised to give preference to through traffic by providing access connections with selected public roads only and by prohibiting crossings at grade or direct private driveway connections. “Partial" control of access means that the authority to control access is exercised to give preference to through traffic to a degree that, in addition to access connections with selected public roads, there may be some crossings at grade and some private driveway connections.
“Folio" means 100 words or figures. Any fraction of a folio shall be paid for as a full folio.
“Following," when used by way of reference to any statute section, means the section next following that in which the reference is made.
“Freeway" means a highway with full control of access and with all crossroads separated in grade from the pavements for through traffic.
Grantor and grantee.
“Grantor" includes every person from or by whom any freehold estate or interest passes in or by any deed; and “grantee" includes every person to whom any such estate or interest passes in like manner.
Heretofore and hereafter.
“Heretofore" means any time previous to the day on which the statute containing it takes effect; “hereafter" means the time after the statute containing such word takes effect.
“Highway" includes all public ways and thoroughfares and all bridges upon the same.
The word “homestead" means the dwelling and so much of the land surrounding it as is reasonably necessary for use of the dwelling as a home, but not less than one-fourth acre, if available, and not exceeding 40 acres.
Any amendment of a homestead statute shall not affect liens of creditors attaching nor rights of devisees or heirs of persons dying prior to the effective date of the amendment.
“Exempt homestead" means the dwelling, including a building, condominium, mobile home, manufactured home, house trailer or cooperative or an unincorporated cooperative association, and so much of the land surrounding it as is reasonably necessary for its use as a home, but not less than 0.25 acre, if available, and not exceeding 40 acres, within the limitation as to value under s. 815.20
, except as to liens attaching or rights of devisees or heirs of persons dying before the effective date of any increase of that limitation as to value.
“Inhabitant" means a resident.
“Issue," as applied to descent of estate, includes all the lawful descendants of the ancestor.
“Judge" does not include a municipal judge, except as provided in ch. 755
“Land" includes lands, tenements and hereditaments and all rights thereto and interests therein.
“Legacy" includes a devise; “legatee" includes a devisee.
Licensed practical nurse.
“Licensed practical nurse" includes a licensed practical/vocational nurse who holds a multistate license, as defined in s. 441.51 (2) (h)
, issued in a party state, as defined in s. 441.51 (2) (k)
In this subsection, “breathes" means draws air into and expels it out of the lungs one or more times.
“Live birth" means the complete expulsion or extraction from his or her mother, of a human being, at any stage of development, who, after the expulsion or extraction, breathes or has a beating heart, pulsation of the umbilical cord, or definite movement of voluntary muscles, regardless of whether the umbilical cord has been cut, and regardless of whether the expulsion or extraction occurs as a result of natural or induced labor, a cesarean section, or an abortion, as defined in s. 253.10 (2) (a)
“Marital child" means either of the following:
A child who is conceived or born while his or her parents are lawfully intermarried.
A nonmarital child who is adopted or whose parents subsequently intermarry under s. 767.803
“Minor" means a person who has not attained the age of 18 years, except that for purposes of investigating or prosecuting a person who is alleged to have violated a state or federal criminal law or any civil law or municipal ordinance, “minor" does not include a person who has attained the age of 17 years.
“Month" means a calendar month unless otherwise expressed.
“Municipality" includes cities and villages; it may be construed to include towns.
“Naturopathic doctor” means a naturopathic doctor licensed under s. 466.04 (1)
. Except where expressly provided, “naturopathic doctor” does not include a limited-scope naturopathic doctor licensed under s. 466.04 (2)
“Nighttime," used in any statute, ordinance, indictment or information, means the time between one hour after sunset on one day and one hour before sunrise on the following day; and the time of sunset and sunrise shall be ascertained according to the mean solar time of the ninetieth meridian west from Greenwich, commonly known as central time, as given in any almanac.
“Nonmarital child" means a child who is neither conceived nor born while his or her parents are lawfully intermarried, who is not adopted and whose parents do not subsequently intermarry under s. 767.803
“Nurse,” “nurse licensed under ch. 441
,” and any reference to an individual who is licensed under ch. 441
include a registered nurse or licensed practical/vocational nurse who holds a multistate license, as defined in s. 441.51 (2) (h)
, issued in a party state, as defined in s. 441.51 (2) (k)
“Oath" includes affirmation in all cases where by law an affirmation may be substituted for an oath. If any oath or affirmation is required to be taken such oath or affirmation shall be taken before and administered by some officer authorized by the laws of this state to administer oaths, at the place where the same is required to be taken or administered, unless otherwise expressly directed, and, when necessary, duly certified by such officer. If an oath is administered it shall end with the words “so help me God". In actions and proceedings in the courts, a person may take an oath or affirmation in communication with the administering officer by telephone or audiovisual means.
“Officers" when applied to corporations include directors and trustees.
“Optical disc" means a rotating circular plate on which information or images are placed in storage, and which is recorded and read by laser beams focused on the plate.
“Optical imaging" means transferring to a format employing an optical disc.
“Person" includes all partnerships, associations and bodies politic or corporate.
“Personal property" includes money, goods, chattels, things in action, evidences of debt and energy.
“Personal representative" means a person, however denominated, who is authorized to administer a decedent's estate.
“Physician assistant” means a person licensed as a physician assistant under subch. IX of ch. 448
NOTE: The cross-reference to subch. IX of ch. 448 was changed from subch. VIII of ch. 448 by the legislative reference bureau under s. 13.92 (1) (bm) 2. to reflect the renumbering under s. 13.92 (1) (bm) 2. of subch. VIII of ch. 448.
Physician, surgeon or osteopath.
surgeon" or “osteopath" means a person holding a license or certificate of registration from the medical examining board.
“Population" means that shown by the most recent regular or special federal census.
“Preceding," when used by way of reference to any statute section, means the section next preceding that in which the reference is made.
“Promulgate," when used in connection with a rule, as defined under s. 227.01 (13)
, means to repeal; renumber; consolidate, renumber and amend; renumber and amend; amend; repeal and recreate; or create.
“Property" includes real and personal property.
“Psychologist” means a psychologist who is licensed under s. 455.04 (1)
, is exercising the temporary authorization to practice, as defined in s. 455.50 (2) (o)
, in this state, or is practicing under the authority to practice interjurisdictional telepsychology, as defined in s. 455.50 (2) (b)
“Publication" in a newspaper of any notice or other matter indicated to be for a stated number of weeks means one insertion each week, unless specifically stated to be for more than one day in each week.
“Qualified", when applied to any person elected or appointed to office, means that such person has done those things which the person was by law required to do before entering upon the duties of the person's office.
“Railroad corporation" and “railroad company" include any person managing, maintaining, operating or in possession of a railroad, whether as owner, contractor, lessee, mortgagee, trustee, assignee or receiver.
Real estate or real property.
“Real estate" or “real property" includes lands, tenements and hereditaments and all rights thereto and interests therein.
If any instrument is required to be recorded by any officer or in any office it must be recorded in a suitable book kept for that purpose unless otherwise expressly directed.
“Registered nurse" includes a registered nurse who holds a multistate license, as defined in s. 441.51 (2) (h)
, issued in a party state, as defined in s. 441.51 (2) (k)
Except for the sealing of instruments by persons required to have and use official seals, “seal" includes the word “seal", the letters “L S" and a scroll or other device intended to represent a seal, if any is affixed in the proper place for a seal, as well as an impression of a seal on the instrument. An instrument executed in the corporate name, by the proper officers of a corporation, under any seal is sealed even though the corporate seal is not used. If the seal of any court or public officer is required to be affixed to any paper issuing from such court or officer “seal" includes an impression of such official seal made upon the paper alone.
If the signature of any person is required by law it shall always be the handwriting of such person or, if the person is unable to write, the person's mark or the person's name written by some other person at the person's request and in the person's presence, or, subject to any applicable requirements under ch. 137
, the electronic signature of the person.
“State," when applied to states of the United States, includes the District of Columbia, the commonwealth of Puerto Rico and the several territories organized by Congress.
“Sworn" includes “affirmed" in all cases where by law an affirmation may be substituted for an oath.
“Town" may be construed to include cities, villages, wards or districts.
“Town board" means the town board of supervisors.
“United States" includes the District of Columbia, the states, the commonwealth of Puerto Rico and the territories organized by congress.
“Village" means incorporated village.
“Week" means 7 consecutive days.
“Will" includes codicils as well as wills.
Written or in writing.
“Written" or “in writing" includes any representation of words, letters, symbols or figures. This subsection does not affect any law relating to signatures.