The Basics of Law
Law is a system of rules that governs human activities, such as business agreements, social relationships, and crime. The people who work in the system are called lawyers and judges.
Lawyers are experts in the law. They help resolve disputes and represent their clients in court. They use a variety of legal methods and tactics to resolve issues and win cases.
Trial – A hearing where one party pleads “not guilty” to a crime, and the other parties present evidence against him or her. This process is usually conducted by a judge or a jury, and can be used to find a defendant guilty or not.
Jury – A group of men and women chosen by the plaintiff’s attorneys to serve as a panel to determine if a person is guilty or not of a certain crime. This group is selected through a process called voir dire.
Precedent – A previous case with facts and law similar to the current dispute before the courts. Some precedents are binding, while others may be considered influential but not legally required.
The court tries to make its decision according to precedent, but this does not always happen. Sometimes a judge will disagree with an earlier decision and rule on the basis of new evidence or other considerations.
Discovery – Lawyers examine facts and documents in possession of their opponents to prepare for trial. They can also obtain the help of a court reporter, who records all the events and testimony that takes place in the trial.
Jury pool – The members of the jury are selected from a pool of potential jurors, which is typically drawn from voter registration banks.
Torts – Civil wrongs or breaches of duty resulting in harm to another person as defined by law. This area of law covers many different types of claims, such as negligence, recklessness, wrongful death and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
Criminal defense – The right of an individual to avoid being convicted for a crime if they can prove that the conduct they committed was necessary, necessary in order to avoid a greater amount of harm, or duress.
Law reflects morality as well as nature, and the two concepts are often seen as conflicting. Jeremy Bentham, for example, was an advocate of utilitarianism, while Jean-Jacques Rousseau, another philosopher, believed that law reflected essentially moral and unchanging laws of nature.
In the past, most Western cultures viewed law through the lens of a scientific and rational framework, and modern judicial systems have inherited this perspective. But non-modern systems are more widely used around the world, and some of these systems use a more natural and indigenous approach to defining law.
Inuit culture, for instance, explains law in terms of experience and perceptions rather than science and logic, and the system is rooted in a philosophy of governance that does not divide reality into natural and non-natural/human.
The concept of law is important to many cultures and societies. It is essential for social order and stability, regulating behavior, rights, contracts and conflicts. It also provides the foundation for civil justice, such as monetary compensation for injuries and property damage.