Law is the system of rules that a society or government develops in order to deal with crime, business agreements and social relationships. It is also used to refer to the people who work in this system.
Some of the purposes for which law is formulated are to keep the peace, maintain the status quo, preserve individual rights, protect minorities against majorities, promote social justice and provide for orderly social change. Some legal systems serve these purposes better than others, and the way in which a nation complies with these rules is often a key part of its identity.
There are three primary categories of law: civil, common and criminal, each with its own distinct set of concepts, laws, and processes. Each is rooted in the governing institutions of that country, and each entails a complex set of issues and challenges.
Civil law, also known as continental or Romano-Germanic law, is the predominant legal system in most countries and covers about 60% of the world’s population. It is based on the concepts, categories and rules that originated in Roman law, supplemented or modified by local custom or culture.
The governing institutions of civil law are mainly the parliament or legislature, and the judiciary, which handles disputes between parties whose interests are in dispute. The judiciary is primarily responsible for interpreting the law and determining its meaning, but it can also make adjustments to accommodate new needs or developments in the society and its people.
Common law is a body of rules developed through the judgments of courts, and it is constantly evolving as a result. It is generally adapted to the needs of the people by legislation and through a system of interpretation by judges and lawyers.
In some cases, however, case law is based only on decisional law (laws that have been established through the course of previous trials), or on constitution-based laws that are outlined in a state’s or federal’s constitution. In these cases, the judge must decide whether or not the statute in question is consistent with constitutional law and fundamental fairness.
Evidence law deals with the materials that can be used to build a case in court, such as testimony, documents and transcripts. It also concerns the procedures for trial, hearings and appeals.
There are many types of evidence, including testimony, documentary evidence and expert testimony. Some of these are admissible in court and can be a useful basis for a decision, while other materials cannot.
Other examples of evidence include witness statements and transcripts, which are oral or written accounts of events. The latter may be taken by an officer authorized to administer oaths or signed as a record of the proceedings.
A law is a set of rules that governs a particular nation or community and is accepted as a guiding authority by its citizens. These rules can be created by a country’s legislature or imposed by a government through the actions of its police and judicial systems.