Recitals, those 'whereas' clauses, appear in contracts as well as legislation, although not all legislation contains recitals; indeed, recitals are 'against' the precepts of certain styles of legislation.
Klimas, Todas and Vaiciukaite, Jurate
"The Law of Recitals In European Community Legislation,"
ILSA Journal of International & Comparative Law: Vol. 15
, Article 6.
Available at: http://nsuworks.nova.edu/ilsajournal/vol15/iss1/6