American law and legal systems pdf
Guide to International and Foreign Law Research
The modern Japanese legal system is based on the civil law system, following the model of 19 th Century European legal systems, especially the legal codes of Germany and France. Japan established its legal system when imperial rule to Japan was restored in as part of the Meiji Restoration. The Meiji Constitution was the organic law of the Japanese empire in effect from to After World War II, there was a major legal reform, and the Constitution was drawn up under the Allied Occupation, with significant American influence. The current Japanese legal system is a hybrid of continental and American law. Both the Civil Law concepts and the more recent Common Law influences are all effected by traditional Japanese values.
Law and Politics
Introduction To Common Law Part 1
After reading this chapter, you should be able to do the following:. Law has different meanings as well as different functions. Philosophers have considered issues of justice and law for centuries, and several different approaches, or schools of legal thought, have emerged. In this chapter, we will look at those different meanings and approaches and will consider how social and political dynamics interact with the ideas that animate the various schools of legal thought. Law is a word that means different things at different times. That which must be obeyed and followed by citizens subject to sanctions or legal consequence is a law.
What follows are some of the fundamental principles that comprise the American legal system. Each of these is discussed in greater detail in this and other chapters of this book. They are summarized below in order to give the reader an overview of some of the basics of American common law. The defining principle of common law is the requirement that courts follow decisions of higher level courts within the same jurisdiction. It is from this legacy of stare decisis that a somewhat predictable, consistent body of law has emerged. Court level or hierarchy defines to a great degree the extent to which a decision by one court will have a binding effect on another court.
There are generally considered to be five legal systems in the world today: civil law, common law, customary law, religious law, and mixed legal systems. Civil law systems have their origin in the Roman legal tradition. Civil systems vary widely, both in procedure and substantive law, so conducting research on a particular nation's civil law system should include looking at that nation's specific system of law, but they do have some trademark characteristics. Nations with civil law systems have comprehensive, frequently updated legal codes. Most importantly, case law is a secondary source in these jurisdictions. France and Germany are two examples of countries with a civil law system.