Whether you’re a lawyer or a non-lawyer, it’s important to understand the role of law in society. Law is the set of rules that is enforced by governmental institutions and social organizations. It shapes the way we think about politics, economics, and history.
Laws can be divided into three categories: civil law, common law, and international law. Each of these categories has its own set of rules that can be applied to a variety of situations.
Common law is a legal system that explicitly acknowledges that courts make decisions that are “law.” These decisions are also binding on other courts. In a common law system, the courts will hear both sides of a controversy in a courtroom. Often, the judge determines the relevant law in a case.
Common law systems include the doctrine of precedent, which means that a decision by a court binds the lower courts. Another important feature of common law systems is argumentative theories. These theories are based on the idea that the law is not fixed in advance. The law may be overturned or amended.
A civil law legal system requires less detail in judicial decisions. In the United States, for example, the US Uniform Commercial Code codifies common law commercial principles.
Some common legal issues include immigration, family law, consumer rights, and housing. These issues can arise from unexpected events or problems at work. Often, courts will hear grievances from minority groups.
International law is a category of law that can refer to private international law and public international law. It includes international agreements and conflicts of laws.