1 December 2023
In law, it is important to distinguish between obligations, permissions, prohibitions, rights, and powers. These categories are called deontic modalities. This paper evaluates the performance of two deontic modality classification models, LEGAL-BERT and a Fusion model, in a low-resource setting. To create a generalised dataset for multi-class classification, we extracted random provisions from European Union (EU) legislation. By fine-tuning previously researched and published models, we evaluate their performance on our dataset against fusion models designed for low-resource text classification. We incorporate focal loss as an alternative for cross-entropy to tackle issues of class imbalance. The experiments indicate that the fusion model performs better for both balanced and imbalanced data with a macro F1-score of 0.61 for imbalanced data, 0.62 for balanced data, and 0.55 with focal loss for imbalanced data. When focusing on accuracy, our experiments indicate that the fusion model performs better with scores of 0.91 for imbalanced data, 0.78 for balanced data, and 0.90 for imbalanced data with focal loss.