Legal Systems - Guide to International and Foreign Law Research - Deepstash

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Legal Systems - Guide to International and Foreign Law Research

Legal Systems - Guide to International and Foreign Law Research

guides.law.sc.edu

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Quick Primer on the World's Legal Systems

There are generally considered to be five legal systems in the world today: 

  • Civil law
  • Common law
  • Customary law
  • Religious law
  • Mixed legal systems.

  • They have their origin in the Roman legal tradition.
  • Civil systems vary widely, both in procedure and substantive law, so conducting research on a particular nation's civil law system should include looking at that nation's specific system of law, but they do have so...

  • While they often have statutes, common law systems rely more on precedent, judicial decisions that have already been made.  
  • Common law systems are adversarial, rather than investigatory, with the judge moderating between two opposing parties.  

  • They are based on patterns of behavior (or customs) that have come to be accepted as legal requirements or rules of conduct within a particular country.  
  • The laws of customary legal systems are usually unwritten and are often dispensed by elders, passed do...

These are the systems where the law emanates from texts or traditions within a given religious tradition.  

Many Islamic nations have legal systems based in whole or in part on the Quran.

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