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Administrative Law

The body of law created by administrative agencies ( in the form of rules, regulations, orders, and decisions) in order to carry out their duties and responsibilities.


The failure to perform a legal obligation.


A reference to a publication in which legal authority - such as a statute or a court decision - or other source can be found.

Civil Law

The branch of law dealing with the definition and enforcement of all private or public rights, as opposed to criminal matters.

Common Law

The body of law developed from custom or judicial decisions in English and U.S. courts, not attributable to a legislature.

Constitutional Law

The body of law delivered from the U.S. Constitution and the constitutions of the various states.

Criminal Law

Law that defines and governs actions that constitute crimes. Generally, criminal law has to do wrongful actions committed against society for which society demands redress.


One against whom a lawsuit is brought; the accused person in a criminal proceeding.


The science or philosophy of law.


A regulation enacted by a city or county legislative body that becomes part of the state's statutory law.


One who initiates a lawsuit.


A court decision that furnishes an example of authority for deciding subsequent cases involving identical or similar facts.


The relief given to an innocent party to enforce a right or compensate for the violation of a right.

Stare Decisis

A common law doctrine under which judges are obligated to follow the precedents established in prior decisions.

Statute of Limitations

A federal or state statute setting the maximum time period during which a certain action can be brought or certain rights enforced.

Statutory Law

Body of law enacted by legislative bodies (as opposed to constitutional law, administrative law, or case law.

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