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""Supreme Court of the Republic of China
"Supreme Court of the Republic of China

"Law is a "system of rules, usually enforced through a set of "institutions. It shapes "politics, "economics and "society in numerous ways and serves as a primary social mediator of relations between people. "Contract law regulates everything from buying a bus ticket to trading on "derivatives markets. "Property law defines rights and obligations related to the transfer and title of "personal (often referred to as chattel) and "real property. "Trust law applies to assets held for investment and financial security, while "tort law allows claims for compensation if a person's rights or property are "harmed. If the harm is criminalised in a statute, "criminal law offers means by which the state can prosecute the perpetrator. "Constitutional law provides a framework for the creation of law, the protection of "human rights and the election of political representatives. "Administrative law is used to review the decisions of government agencies, while "international law governs affairs between "sovereign states in activities ranging from "trade to environmental regulation or military action. Writing in 350 BC, the "Greek philosopher "Aristotle declared: "The "rule of law is better than the rule of any individual."

Legal systems elaborate "rights and responsibilities in a variety of ways. A general distinction can be made between "civil law "jurisdictions, which codify their laws, and "common law systems, where judge made law is not consolidated. In some countries, "religion informs the law. Law provides a rich source of scholarly inquiry, into "legal history, "philosophy, "economic analysis or "sociology. Law also raises important and complex issues concerning "equality, fairness and "justice. "In its majestic equality", said the author "Anatole France in 1894, "the law forbids rich and poor alike to sleep under bridges, beg in the streets and steal loaves of bread." In a typical "democracy, the central institutions for interpreting and creating law are the three main branches of "government, namely an impartial "judiciary, a democratic "legislature, and an accountable "executive. To implement and enforce the law and provide services to the public, a government's bureaucracy, the military and police are vital. While all these organs of the state are creatures created and bound by law, an independent "legal profession and a vibrant "civil society inform and support their progress. ("More…)

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""A wide red building, with numerous pillars and archways, stands in the middle of some gardens. A road runs just in front of the court.

"India's unitary "judicial system is made up of the "Supreme Court of India at the national level, for the entire country and the "24 High Courts at the State level. These courts have jurisdiction over a "state, a "union territory or a group of states and union territories. Below the High Courts are a hierarchy of subordinate courts such as the civil courts, family courts, criminal courts and various other "district courts. High Courts are instituted as "constitutional courts under Part VI, Chapter V, Article 214 of the "Indian Constitution.

The High Courts are the principal civil courts of "original jurisdiction in the state along with District Courts which are subordinate to the High courts. However, High courts exercise their original civil and criminal jurisdiction only if the courts subordinate to the High court in the state are not competent (not authorized by law) to try such matters for lack of pecuniary, territorial jurisdiction. High courts may also enjoy original jurisdiction in certain matters if so designated specifically in a state or Federal law. e.g.: Company law cases are instituted only in a High court. ("more...)

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""A large crowd of predominantly black people are seen on the march.

The "Jena Six were six black teenagers convicted in the beating of Justin Barker, a "white student at "Jena High School in "Jena, "Louisiana, on December 4, 2006. Barker was injured in the assault by the members of the Jena Six, and received treatment for his injuries at an emergency room. While the case was pending, it was often cited as an example of racial injustice in the United States, due to a belief that the defendants had initially been charged with too-serious offenses and had been treated unfairly.

A number of events took place in and around Jena in the months preceding the Barker assault which have been linked to an alleged escalation of racial tensions. These events included the hanging of "nooses from a tree in the high school courtyard, two violent confrontations between white and black youths, and the destruction by fire of the main building of Jena High School. The incidents were often linked in the extensive news coverage regarding the Jena Six. ("more...)

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""A seated barrister
Image by unknown photographer; uploaded by "Cliniic
"Jawaharlal Nehru at the "Allahabad High Court

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"Public Prosecutor v. Taw Cheng Kong is a landmark case decided in 1998 by the "Court of Appeal of Singapore which shaped the landscape of Singapore's "constitutional law. The earlier "High Court decision, Taw Cheng Kong v. Public Prosecutor, was the first instance in Singapore's history that a statutory provision was struck down as unconstitutional. The matter subsequently reached the Court of Appeal when the "Public Prosecutor applied for a criminal reference for two questions to be considered. The questions were:

  1. whether section 37(1) of the Prevention of Corruption Act (Cap. 241, 1993 Rev. Ed.) ("PCA") was "ultra vires the powers of the legislature on the ground that the legislature had, under section 6(3) of the Republic of Singapore Independence Act 1965 (No. 9 of 1965, 1985 Rev. Ed.), been divested of the power to "legislate extraterritorially; and
  2. whether section 37(1) of the PCA was discriminatory against "Singapore citizens and hence inconsistent with "Article 12(1) of the "Constitution of the Republic of Singapore (1992 Reprint) (now the "Singapore Constitution (1999 Reprint)). ("more...)

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""A black and white photograph of Clement Attlee

The "Parliament Acts 1911 and 1949 are two "Acts of the "Parliament of the United Kingdom. The Parliament Act 1911 asserted the supremacy of the "House of Commons by limiting the legislation-blocking powers of the "House of Lords. Provided the provisions of the Act are met, legislation can be passed without the approval of the House of Lords. The 1911 Act also amended the "Septennial Act to reduce the maximum life of a Parliament from seven years to five. The first Parliament Act was amended by the Parliament Act 1949, passed when "Clement Attlee (pictured) was Prime Minister. This further limited the power of the Lords by reducing the time that they could delay bills, from two years to one. The Parliament Acts (which are still in force) have been used to pass legislation against the wishes of the House of Lords on only seven occasions since 1911, including the passing of the Parliament Act 1949. Some constitutional lawyers had questioned the validity of the 1949 Act; these doubts were settled in 2005 when an unusually large panel of nine "Law Lords ruled against a challenge by the "Countryside Alliance to the validity of the "Hunting Act 2004, which had been passed under the auspices of the Act. ("more...)

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