What Is Law?


Law is a system of rules and regulations that governs the way people behave in society. These laws regulate social relationships, crime, business, and property, among other things.

Law can be made by a legislature or by a single legislator, resulting in statutes; by the executive through decrees and regulations; or established by judges through precedent, usually in common law jurisdictions. Some countries have a system of private contracts that may be used to resolve legal disputes in alternative ways to standard court litigation.

Statutes and bills enacted by governments are often based on a study that is conducted over a period of time, such as a year or more, by a commission or committee designated by the President or a member of the Cabinet. They can also be drafted by congressional committees.

Administrative Procedure Act and the Uniform Code of Military Justice are two examples of enactments that resulted from these studies.

The drafting of statutes requires considerable skill, knowledge, and experience. Occasionally, Congress may use an agency to do the drafting.

pleadings – Written statements of the parties in a civil case of their positions (complaint and answer). These are usually filed in federal courts.

witnesses – Individuals who are called by the government or the plaintiff in a lawsuit to testify about the facts of the case. They are generally called witnesses to the case and are often required to answer questions in writing under oath.

injunction – A temporary order issued by a judge that prohibits a party from doing something that could cause irreparable damage or injury.