Law is the set of rules, customs and policies prescribed by a community to control and govern its members. It is a field that covers almost everything people do and creates the foundation for societies. Law shapes politics, economics and history in many ways. It is usually split into criminal and civil law, which cover different aspects of a society’s order. In some jurisdictions, the legislature codifies laws and in others, judges make up the law through case precedent. Traditionally, religious laws have also been influential in settling disputes.
The law is the subject of many academic disciplines, including history, philosophy, economic analysis and sociology. It is a rich source of controversy and scholarly debate. In the United States, law is an important career choice for many students. Lawyers, judges and legal scholars often write about the law. They may critique recent changes in legislation or delve into controversial issues. Articles on the law can be found in a variety of media, including newspapers, journals and books.
Unlike some other topics, legal writing can be very technical and use footnotes for references. This is especially true of articles written for lawyers and judges. Lawyers and legal scholars also tend to avoid jargon when writing for general audiences, as this can confuse readers. The legal profession also has its own lingo that is used frequently in courtrooms and the offices of attorneys.
The most common legal subjects are contract law, criminal law and civil law. These encompass the laws that regulate transactions and controversies among individuals. Contract law relates to agreements that exchange goods or services, such as purchasing a bus ticket or trading shares on the stock market. Criminal law deals with conduct deemed harmful to social order and can result in fines or imprisonment. Civil law addresses lawsuits between parties.
Other branches of law include terrorism, taxation and property law. These laws address issues that are important to the public, such as securing freedom and privacy or minimizing damage from terrorist attacks.
Besides writing about these subjects, law articles can also discuss administrative and procedural matters. These laws determine how courts function, and how they handle a specific type of case. Procedural law includes the rules that judges and lawyers must follow when deciding cases. It is based on the principle that all parties are entitled to due process and impartiality. Administrative law, on the other hand, refers to government regulations that control certain areas of the economy, such as regulating health care and insurance companies. Procedural law also involves the procedure for screening applicants for pretrial release and monitoring convicted offenders who are released under supervision. The law of evidence outlines which materials are admissible in court for a case to be built. This subject is important in criminal, civil and family law cases. It is also relevant for prosecutors and defenders in determining whether to introduce a particular piece of evidence. It also explains what the jury pool is and how a lawyer chooses the actual jurors in a case.