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  1. Hanka
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    #1

    Tenses

    Hello, could you please tell me what´s the difference between these two sentences?

    It was stated that it was a document by which it IS not possible to prove the citizenship.

    It was stated that it was a document by which it WAS not possible to prove the citizenship.

    Are they both correct? Can both sentences refer to present? Where is the difference?

    Thank you very much

    Hanka

  2. RonBee's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Tenses

    Quote Originally Posted by Hanka
    Hello, could you please tell me what´s the difference between these two sentences?

    It was stated that it was a document by which it IS not possible to prove the citizenship.

    It was stated that it was a document by which it WAS not possible to prove the citizenship.

    Are they both correct? Can both sentences refer to present? Where is the difference?

    Thank you very much

    Hanka
    Meaning is determined by context. Thus context is always helpful. Both sentences are in the past tense. (How far back in the past it is impossible to tell.) Without more context it is impossible to tell what the difference is between the sentences (if any).



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    #3

    Re: Tenses

    It is a court decision and the context is as follows:

    The Interior Minister has decided on the basis of the appeal lodged by XY against a part of the Interior Ministry decision dated February 10, 2004 on the basis of which it was DECLARED that the certificate of citizenship issued by the Municipal District Office for XY WAS a null act by which it IS (OR WAS ????) not possible to prove the citizenship, as follows: etc.....

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    #4

    Re: Tenses

    As the first verb is in the present perfect, I'd be tempted to use 'is' here, as this is a new decision.


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    #5

    Re: Tenses

    Should I then use "IS" only in the second part of the sentence "by which it IS not possible to prove citizenship" or also in the first part "it was declared that the certificate of citizenship IS a null act"? If the sentence starts with "it was declared that", the present tense should be changed to past, shouldn´t it? But in which parts of the sentence? I am a bit confused ....

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    #6

    Re: Tenses

    Can you give me the next few lines to get it clear about the nature of the decision- it could be taken two ways.


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    #7

    Re: Tenses

    The Interior Minister has decided on the basis of the appeal lodged by XY against a part of the Interior Ministry decision dated February 10, 2004 on the basis of which it was DECLARED that the certificate of citizenship issued by the Municipal District Office for XY WAS a null act by which it IS (OR WAS ????) not possible to prove the citizenship, as follows:

    According to Section 59, paragraph 2 of the Administrative Procedure Code the appeal is d i s m i s s e d and the Interior Ministry decision dated February 10, 2004 is c o n f i r m e d in the statement part: “The certificate of citizenship issued for the above-named on December 20, 2003 by the Municipal District Office is a null act by which it is not possible to prove citizenship.”

    And then there are about 4 pages containing the grounds for this decision.

  3. RonBee's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: Tenses

    Quote Originally Posted by Hanka
    The Interior Minister has decided on the basis of the appeal lodged by XY against a part of the Interior Ministry decision dated February 10, 2004 on the basis of which it was DECLARED that the certificate of citizenship issued by the Municipal District Office for XY WAS a null act by which it IS (OR WAS ????) not possible to prove the citizenship, as follows:

    According to Section 59, paragraph 2 of the Administrative Procedure Code the appeal is d i s m i s s e d and the Interior Ministry decision dated February 10, 2004 is c o n f i r m e d in the statement part: “The certificate of citizenship issued for the above-named on December 20, 2003 by the Municipal District Office is a null act by which it is not possible to prove citizenship.”
    The use of was would indicate that things have changed. The writer wishes to say that the certificate of citizenship is (not was) a null act. The writer wishes to say that it is not possible to prove citizenship (not that it was not). Use is to indicate something that is true now.


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