Criminal law is a system of laws and rules intended to protect the public and deter wrongdoing. The criminal justice system in the United States is a complex and adversarial one, and individuals accused of criminal offenses are typically advised to retain an attorney in order to protect their rights. Penal codes define specific crimes and punishments, which are enacted by legislators at the state and local level. Misdemeanors, on the other hand, involve less serious crimes, and generally only result in fines or community service. Examples of misdemeanors include first-time drunk driving and possession of small quantities of controlled substances.
International law is a branch of law that governs the interactions of nations. It regulates hostilities, the treatment of prisoners, the environment, and global commons. It also regulates world trade and communications.
Administrative law is a body of law that governs government agencies. These agencies have broad jurisdictions, including economic functions and social issues. They are governed by the Administrative Procedures Act of 1946. The purpose of administrative law is to provide a legal basis for the actions of these agencies and ensure that they are conducting their work efficiently.
A statute is a written piece of law that is passed by a legislature. It differs from other types of law, including common law, oral tradition, and regulatory law promulgated by the executive. Statutes may be issued by a national or state legislature, or by a local municipality.
Constitutional law is a branch of law that focuses on the rights of citizens. Its fundamental purpose is to ensure that individuals are treated fairly by political bodies, and protects their rights. It also maintains a system of checks and balances, where government agencies communicate with one another and review legal proceedings. This prevents one branch from becoming too powerful.
Rule of law
The Rule of Law is a system of laws and institutions that govern society. The Rule of Law is an important concept for a variety of reasons. First, it helps reduce the arbitrary power of those in authority. Second, the Rule of Law creates a more predictable and mutual constraint of authority, which helps mitigate the asymmetry of political power.