Law is a system of rules that governs the actions of individuals and communities. It shapes politics, economics, history and society in various ways.
The word law is derived from the Latin verb legis, meaning to govern. It is also the term for a government or authority that makes and enforces laws, which citizens must follow.
Legal systems vary widely across the world, and are influenced by many different factors. Often the word “law” refers to a specific type of law, such as criminal law, family law or tax law.
Generally speaking, laws can be divided into two main groups: those that are made by governments and those that are made by citizens. The former are called legislative laws, and the latter are known as administrative or executive laws.
Some governments make laws themselves, while others have an independent judiciary that judges people accused of breaking the law. Depending on the country, the laws that are made by the government can either be strict or loose.
In most countries, there are certain things that you cannot do unless the government has made it illegal for them to do. Examples are stealing or murder, and you might be fined if you break these laws.
In the United States, there are many laws that have been passed by Congress and signed into law by the President. Some of these laws are criminal laws, while others are civil (noncriminal) laws. Some laws may be specific to individuals, while others may apply to a business or an agency within the executive branch of government.