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Flashcards in B141 Deck (25)
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Define what law is.

Law is a set of rules that allows us to do certain things and prevents us from doing others.


Why do we need law?

- law helps to create public order by setting limits of what is acceptable.
- it helps to protect individual liberties by giving people rights when they are charged with criminal offences.
- it helps to regulate relationships between people so there is fairness and equality
- it sets standards, particularly for those who owe responsibilities to other people.
- it provides remedies for wrongs suffered so that people can be compensated in civil law and those who break the criminal law can be punished.


What are the 5 most common types of civil law?

- contract
- consumer
- tort
- family
- employment


What is the purpose of civil law?

The purpose of civil law is to settle disputes between individuals and/or businesses.


Describe contract law

When individuals or businesses enter into an agreement both parties generally want the other to carry out what they have agreed in the way that they have agreed it.
If the parties intended to be legally bound by the agreement, then usually this is called a contract.
If either party fails to carry out their obligations, then the other party can seek help through the courts under contract law.


Describe consumer law

Consumer law allows customers to purchase goods and services in a safe and secure manner with the knowledge that if anything goes wrong with the goods or services, they have rights that will be protected under the law.
Much of this law is driven by EU legislation.


Describe tort law

A tort is a civil 'wrong' and in many cases complements criminal law. The criminal law will punish the defendant, but tort law can financially compensate the injured party.
A claim under tort law usually arises where someone is injured as a result of another person's carelessness, or 'negligent act'.
There are many types of tort, but negligence is the most common.


What is family law?

Family law deals with areas such as marriage and divorce, death and inheritance.


What is employment law?

The Law provides rules and boundaries that employers and employees must adhere to.


Who starts a case in criminal law?

Following a police investigation, the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) is the main organisation responsible for taking the case to court on behalf of the state.


Who starts the case in civil law?

Civil cases are brought by individuals. They are know as the claimant. The person who they are bringing the allegations against is called the defendant.


Where are criminal cases heard?

All criminal cases start in the Magistrates' court. The most serious cases are referred to Crown Court.


Where are civil cases heard?

Most civil claims start in County Court or High Court. If the claimant is claiming large amounts of compensation, then the case would be heard in the High Court.


What standard of proof is needed in a criminal case in order to find a defendant legally responsible (guilty)?

The magistrate or Crown Court Judge must be satisfied that the evidence proves beyond reasonable doubt that the defendant committed the crime.


What standard of proof is needed in a civil case for the defendant to be found legally responsible?

The claimant has to prove on a balance of probabilities that the defendant has broken or breached his agreement and therefore owes him some form of compensation , or, simply to carry out the agreement as planned.


In England and Wales the law comes from different sources. What are the 4 main sources of law?

1. Acts of Parliament
2. Delegated legislation
3. European law
4. Judicial Precedent (judge-made law)


Identify 3 powers from the list below which the police have under the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 in respect of a suspect held at a police station.
- grant bail
- conduct searches
- detain suspect
- sentence
- convict
- take samples

-conduct searches
-detain suspect
-take samples(but not intimate ones)


Which 3 items of clothing can a police officer ask a suspect to remove if they are to be searched in a public place?

- outer coat
- jacket
- gloves


How does the law try to balance individual rights with police powers through PACE84 and Codes of Practice?

PACE and the Codes of Practice mean police behaviour is better regulated and they aerial accountable. This protects both the police and the individual. Having clear powers for the police helps us all feel safer, especially in relation to crimes of serious violence or terrorism.


How does the law try to balance individual rights with police powers through the Complaints Procedures?

If an individual feels the police have exceeded their powers there are several ways in which they can complain, such as the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC), speaking to the Duty Officer at any police station, talking to the Citizen's Advice Bureau, a solicitor or the local MP.


How does the law try to balance individual rights with police powers through the Human Rights Act 1998?

The Human Rights Act 1998 guarantees basic individual rights are protected and other laws ensue that individuals cannot be subject to discrimination by the police.


How are laws made in Parliament?

A bill is normally started in the House of Commons, but can also be started in the House of Lords going through the same stages.
1. First reading
2. Second reading
3. Committee stage
4. Report stage
5. Third reading
6. The House of Lords
7. The Royal Assent


What is the pre-legislative process?

Before a new law is debated in Parliament, the Government will usually put ideas together in a Green Paper asking for the public's opinions.
This is the consultation period.
The Government can use suggestions and make changes before publishing a White Paper which says what the Government wants to do to change the law.
The proposed Act is written by lawyers on behalf of the Government. This is called a bill. The bill is debated through the variety of stages in Parliament before becoming an Act.


Name the different types of bill

Public bill
Private Members' bill
Private bills
Hybrid bill


What are the criticisms of Parliament made laws

1. It takes a long time for a bill to pass through all the stages and become an Act of Parliament.
2. Difficult language - can cause confusion/ambiguity
3. European influence on legislation- the UK can only pass laws that are compatible with existing EU law.
4. There are thousands of Acts of Parliament so it can be difficult to find the Act you are looking for.