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What is Law?

Law prescribes acceptable standards of conduct, and breaches of these laws will incur a legal consequence.


What are the sources of law?

Elected Politicians in Parliaments

The decisions of Judges in courts

(Note) Federal and State constitutions contain enabling acts that allow the creation of courts.


What are the classifications of law?

Public - relates to disputes between individuals and the state and may forbid certain conduct that is likely to disrupt social cohesion

Private - affects the rights and obligations of individuals, families, businesses and small groups and exists to assist citizens in disputes that involve private matter.


What are the main types of law?

Constitutional Law

Statutes (legislation or Acts of Parliament)

Delegated legislation – regulations (called subordinate legislation in South Australia)

Case Law


What is a constitutional monarchy?

A constitutional monarchy is a national system in which the head of state is a hereditary monarch who exercises power in accordance with law.


What is a republic?

A republic is a national system of governance in which the head of state attains his or her public office on merit, through election or appointment.


What is the rule of law?

The rule of law is a concept that all people are equal before the law and that government can only exercise power by order of the constitution.


What are the elements of the rule of law?

The Supremacy of the constitution.

Equality before the law.

Respect for fundamental human rights.


What is the Supremacy of the Constitution? (Rule Of Law)

All institutions of government can only exercise power consistent with the constitution.


What is Equality Before the Law? (Rule of Law)

This means all institutions of government must treat people equally before the law.


What is Respect For Fundamental Human Rights? (Rule of Law)

This means, for example, all institutions of government must exercise power in a manner that does not arbitrarily deprive people of their fundamental human rights.


What is the Division of Powers?

The Division of Powers is the constitutional allocation of legislative powers between the commonwealth and the states.


What is the Separation of Powers?

The separation of powers is a doctrine that divides the governance of a nation or state into distinct but related, arms or branches, each with its own institutions and roles. Power is separated into the Legislative Arm, Executive Arm, and Judicial Arm.


What is the Legislative Arm?

The Legislative Arm comprises an elected parliament which makes statute law, referred to as legislation and acts of parliament.


What is the Executive Arm?

The Executive Arm consists of the Government, a collection of ministers and departments, and an array of government agencies created by enabling acts. The executive’s primary role is to enforce and administer the statutes enacted by parliament.


What is the Judicial Arm?

The Judicial Arm is comprised of the courts and judicial tribunals exercising judicial powers to adjudicate legal disputes and bring about lawful conclusions.


What are the fundamental functions and purposes of the Separation of Powers?

To divide governance into three separate but related arms so that power cannot be amassed by and individual or group.

To accommodate a system of checks and balances so that each arm can supervise and review powers exercised by the other arms.


What is meant by the Acronym VADER? Give examples to support your answer.

VALUES – morals or social, political, religious, economic.

ACCEPTABLE STANDARDS OF BEHAVIOUR – what society deems is acceptable, for example using manners when talking to someone

DISPUTES – resolutions via court or alternative dispute resolution

EVOLUTION – an example of evolution is gay marriage and how it is becoming legal in most countries

RIGHTS – an example of rights is the right to remain silent during a trial in court.


What are the 4 categories of crimes in South Australia?

Offences Against Person

Offences Against Property
Offences Against Public Order

Strict Liability Offences


Discuss the 3 classifications of offences in South Australia?

Summary offences
Magistrates Court Max Penalty: Two Years Imprisonment

Minor Indictable Offences
Magistrates or Magistrates or District Court: 5 Years Imprisonment

Indictable Offences
Supreme Court - Max penalty - Life Imprisonment


State the classifications of public and private law.

Public law

Administrative Law
Constitutional Law
Criminal Law
Municipal Law
International Laws

Private Laws

Contract Law
Tort law
Property Law
Succession Law
Family Law


What is Administrative Law?

Administrative Law: Laws that govern government agencies.


What is constitutional law ?

Constitutional Law: Laws that protect citizen’s rights as afforded in constitution.


What is criminal law?

Criminal Law: laws that relate to crime.


What is municipal law?

Municipal Law: Ordinances, regulations and by –laws that govern a city or town.


What is international law?

International Law: Law that oversees relations between nations.


What is contract law?

Contract Law: Govern rights and obligations of those entering into contracts.


What is tort law?

Tort law: Rights, obligations, and remedies provided to someone who had been wronged by another individual.


What is property law?

Property Law: Govern forms of property ownership, transfer and tenant issues.


Succession Law?

Succession Law: Governs the transfer of an estate between parties.