What Is Law?

Categories : Gembing

Law is a collection of rules enforced by a controlling authority and that governs the conduct of people and groups. Among other things, laws determine who has the right to speak and act on behalf of others, what crimes are punishable, and what rights individuals have to property, family, life, and safety. The law is often considered to be one of the foundations of a democratic society.

Law also encompasses the procedures that a judge or jury uses to decide a case and what materials are admissible in court. For example, a lawyer may present evidence in the form of testimony or documents that a court can use to make a decision.

The legal system varies from place to place, but it generally includes a governing body (such as a government) that makes and enforces the laws, judges who hear and rule on cases, and prosecutors who charge people with criminal or civil violations of the law. Lawyers are the main people who practice law. In the United States, for example, lawyers are regulated by a bar association, and they must pass a written exam to become licensed. Law is also a source of scholarly study and provides material for philosophical, economic and sociological analysis. It is different from science, because it focuses on normative statements rather than descriptive or causal statements. Unlike empirical science, such as the law of gravity (Fg = G), laws can change over time as scientific research shows new information and insights.