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Business Law Chapter 1 2


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Definition of Law
"a rule of civil conduct prescribed by the supreme power in a state, commanding what is right, and prohibiting what is wrong" (Blackstone)
Functions of Law
To maintain stability in the social, political, and economic system through dispute resolution, protection of property, and the preservation of the state while simultaneously permitting ordered change
Laws and Morals
Different but overlapping: law provides sanctions while morals do not
Law and Justice
Separate and distinct concepts; justice is the fair, equitable, and impartial treatment of competing interest with due regard for the common good
Legal capacity to require another person to perform or refrain from performing an act
Legal obligation requiring a person to perform or refrain from performing an act
Substantive Law
The basic law creating rights and duties
Procedural Law
Rules for enforcing substantive law
Public Law
The law dealing with the relationship between government and individuals
Private Law
The law involving relationships among individuals and legal entities
Civil Law
The law dealing with the rights and duties of individuals and legal entities
Criminal Law
The law that involves offenses against the entire community
To begin a lawsuit in court
The person against whom a legal action is brought
The person who initiates a civil suit
To bring a criminal proceeding
Fundamental law of a government establishing its powers and limitations
Judicial Review
Authority of the courts to determine the constitutionality of legislative and executive acts
Common Law System
Body of law originating in England and derived from judicial decisions
Adversary System
System in which opposing parties initiate and present their cases
Civil Law System
Body of law dirived from Roman law and based upon comprehensive legislative enactments
Inquisitorial System
System in which the judiciary initiates, conducts, and decides cases
Stare Decisis
Principle that courts should apply rules decided in prior cases in deciding substantially similar cases
Body of law based upon principles distinct from common law and providing remedies not available at law
Decision of a court of equity
Specific Performance
Decree ordering a party to perform a contractual duty
Decree ordering a party to do or refrain from doing a specified act
Equitable remedy rewriting a contract to conform with the original intent of the contracting parties
An equitable remedy invalidating a contract
A general legal principle
An agreement between or among independent nations
Executive Order
Legislation issued by the president or governor
Administrative Law
Law dealing with the establishment, duties, and powers or agencies in the executive branch of government
Party who appeals

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