Running head: ROLE AND FUNCTIONS OF LAW PAGE \* MERGEFORMAT 1 ROLE AND FUNCTIONS OF LAW PAGE \* MERGEFORMAT 5
Role and Functions of Law
February 03, 2014
Role and Functions of Law
Throughout history law has been defined many different ways. A generally accepted generic definition of the law is a body of rules of action or conduct prescribed by controlling authority, and having legal binding force (College, 2011). The most common distinction of the present state of law is that it forms duties, obligations, and rights that echo accepted views of a paticular society. Most of us think of law as piles of legal books full of codes on a giant bookshelf in an attorney's office. To make law easier to understand we need to think of it in a much broader sense.
There are several sources and levels of law in the United States, but the most common is substantive law, procedural law, criminal law, civil law, common law, and statutory law. Substantive law gives individual citizens rights and creates certain duties within the community, while Procedural laws give a guide line and a set of rules for following substantive rights. Substantive and Procedural laws go hand-in-hand. The purpose of criminal laws is to protect society, when a person or persons violate a criminal law the violator pays a penalty to society of either a fine or imprisonment. You can usually see these laws being enforced on any given day at your local court house. Civil laws are used to pay damages to a person or persons for a loss suffered as a result of another's behavior. It is possible to be found innocent of committing a criminal offense and then found guilty of a related civil offense. Common laws are laws that the House of Representatives and the Senate have not been passed. Common laws are made by the courts and are based on the fundamentals of former cases with comparable circumstances. Statutory law is the frame of law created by the House of Representatives and the Senate and approved by the President.
Laws have several purposes in society and in business. In society laws provide a way for the members of a community to govern themselves in a way that is fair to everyone. Laws dictate how society is to interact and what is considered acceptable behavior in society. If there were no laws society would be in chaos, only the strong would survive. Without laws there would be no way to guarantee or protect our rights, this will eventually lead to the loss of these rights. To really understand how badly it would be for society if there were no laws to govern us, imagine what it would be...