What is law? That is the question that has preoccupied attorneys and legal scholars for many centuries now. Ever since the Magna Carta in the thirteenth century, the concept of law and its various disciplines have been at the center of political discussion and human endeavor. In modern times, law has assumed the role of a highly respected body of knowledge whose impact has transcended across different generations. A critical thinker by nature, lawyer enjoys a lively intellectual interaction with colleagues, providing them with rich insights into how the world works.
Law is an organized system of rules developed and enforced by legislative bodies, with its own specific definition a point of longstanding debate. It is also commonly defined as the art and science of justice, exercised by the courts. Within the jurisdiction of the court, there exist common law jurisdictions and mixed law jurisdictions- jus ad bellum (in the area of action only), jus bello (in the area of defense only), and ex-delicia jurisdictions (in the area of criminal law).
The common law jurisdictions are those where the state recognizes a system of laws derived from the common law of the country. Common law has evolved through the interpretation and application of English common law and civil law jurisdictions over the centuries. Civil law courts tend to take civil cases that arise out of a common law basis and, in doing so, apply the same law definition and scope as applied by the Common Law.
For example, if a person is convicted of a crime in a state other than his state, he would not be entitled to an automatic stay against his arrest based upon the theory that a state statute provided for such a suspension.
Criminal law is a body of law whose definition is understood to include judicial proceeding against individuals who violate specific criminal laws. Criminal laws are not identical to civil law but the jurisdictions within which criminal cases are processed and dealt with have much in common with civil law. Almost all crimes can be punished by a fine or by imprisonment. In addition, most crimes require proof beyond a reasonable doubt to establish guilt and to be found guilty.
Difficulty of what is law? is the situation in which one innocent victim is put on trial for the crime of another. If such a case came up before a court, the two jurymen would have to choose between punishing the one innocent victim and sparing the other. It seems that either of these options would be unacceptable.
There are some problems with the idea of what is law? One difficulty is that the definition of law changes from time to time. For example, during World War II, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black referred to theocuments of the law as “absurdic”. He said that there were “no rules of civil or criminal law which could be satisfied by a resort to force or the sword.” Because there are no established rules of law, lawyers must interpret and apply the laws according to their own preferences and feelings.
An issue that arises in this regard is whether a person has a “right to the presumption of innocence” – in other words, the person accused of a crime has the” presumption of innocence” that most people have, i.e., the presumption that he did not commit the crime. Arguments for this view are that it simply a question of common sense and that in any event, if there is a crime being committed, someone should be able to be said to be “innocent”. Arguments against this view are that if this were so, why would anyone want to arrest someone on a suspicion that they are guilty without knowing or even if they have been able to prove that they are not guilty?
Another problem with what is law? When we speak of crime, we typically think of criminal law, i.e., the area of criminal law that addresses crimes against persons and property. This includes murder, rape, theft, arson, embezzlement, corporate fraud, pornography, sexual abuse, kidnapping and more. There are several exceptions to this generalization, however, and we use “what is law?” to describe the problem, when we speak of crimes against society or the environment.