What Is Law?

Law is a set of rules created by the state that form a framework to ensure a peaceful society. These rules are enforced and if they are broken sanctions can be imposed.

In a society where the rules are enforceable, everyone is treated equally and there is no discrimination on the basis of race, religion, gender or social status. The laws are also designed to prevent the abuse of power, for example checks and balances are in place to limit the ability of those in charge to manipulate and use their position of authority.

The law is usually made by a legislative body resulting in statutes or it may be decided upon through the courts based on prior court decisions, known as case law. Some countries, such as the U.S, have a common law system where the judges decide on each case whereas others have a civil law system, which is written down and cannot be changed by individual judges. The laws can cover a wide range of subjects including business, crime, family, property and health, among others.

A good rule to follow is that the law must be clear and concise. It must be easy for the average person to understand and it must be upheld fairly by all those in charge. There is also the issue of whether a law has moral value, for example some people believe that it is wrong to steal and this belief is reflected in many of the world’s laws.

The laws also provide a way to resolve disputes peacefully, for example if two people argue over who owns a piece of land they can turn to the law and the judge will decide. This keeps peace in society and allows for a fairer distribution of resources.

In some cases, the law reflects the beliefs and values of a culture, for example Islamic law is guided by the Quran. Other laws are based on science, for example environmental laws.

The laws can also be used as a tool to influence public policy, for example the UK government is introducing a carbon tax which will influence businesses to change their ways of working in order to save energy. Another purpose of the laws is to promote freedom, which is a core value of most legal systems. There are also laws that regulate a country’s borders, for example immigration laws are important in maintaining a stable society. Other examples include the laws that govern medical research and the law regarding copyright and intellectual property. There is also a wide range of professions that deal with the law, for example lawyers, solicitors and barristers. The law is an extremely important aspect of society and it is crucial that all those involved in creating and enforcing the laws work together to maintain a fair and stable system. A great way to do this is through law schools, which train individuals for a career in the field of the law.