common law

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common law

or

case law

laws based upon the outcome of previous court cases which serve as a precedent in guiding the judgement of present court cases. Where important legal principles are involved in a particular court case, the plaintiff or defendant may appeal against the judgement of a court to a higher court such as the High Court and then the House of Lords in the UK and finally the European Court of Justice. Compare STATUTE LAW.

common law

the body of law built up over many years as a result of previous court decisions interpreting legislation. These establish legal precedents that then need to be followed consistently in subsequent court cases. Compare STATUTE LAW.

common law

A law derived from common usage, ancient customs, or the pronouncements and interpretations of courts.Contrast with code law,or civil law,which relies on statutory enactments for the articulation of rights and responsibilities, and then judicial interpretation of those statutes. English law,and almost all American law,is based on common law.The law in France is based on the Napoleonic code,and the law in Louisiana is based on that code also.(Because of the completely different underpinnings of Louisiana law,it is rare to find a lawyer or real estate agent outside the state who will offer an opinion regarding real estate law within the state.) When reading definitions of words,one should pay attention to whether the definition recites “at common law” or “at civil law.”

References in periodicals archive ?
In the common law system, the bundle of right theory focuses on the use interests and the estate system directs our attention only to certain legal interests.
The conclusion from the citation data is obvious--judicial citation, at least in Canada, reaches out almost exclusively to common law systems, bijuralism notwithstanding.
common law system where laws may be purposefully vague and judges have great interpretive license.
The Wong Kim Ark decision, however, was based on the mistaken premise that the Fourteenth Amendment adopted the common law system of birthright citizenship.
210) International law purists condemn the expansion of robust international courts and stare decisis--those aspects of the common law system invading the traditional civil law.
After discovering just how foreign a transplanted common law system could be to experienced Afghan lawyers, we quickly realized that any new legal system would have to be recognizable to Afghan practitioners if it were to have any lasting value.
Far from the Anglo-Saxon common law system of "precedents," our system does not allow us to treat the holding of the French Supreme Court as stating an immutable principle of interpretation of the idea of "normal exploitation of the work.
However, the common law system of compensating injured workers was not completely eliminated when these laws were enacted because workers compensation laws are not applicable to certain employers, categories of employment and legal actions.
The traditional role of the appeals process in the American common law system has not been to give disputants a whole new second trial, but to review the lower court's methods to ensure fairness, impartiality, and--usually on the state level, for cases originating in state courts--an avenue to consider new evidence that may have been discovered.
The former colony retained its common law system after its political changeover from Britain to China on July 1, 1997.
Zimmerman, chief representative and partner in the Beijing office of international law firm Squire Sanders & Dempsey LLP, agreed, adding that Hong Kong's legal system is based on the English common law system, while on the mainland, a civil law system dominates.