Half the world is composed of the people who have something to say and can't and the other half who have nothing to say and keep on saying


JOKES ABOUT LAWYERS Lawyer: Judge, I wish to appeal my client's case on the basis of newly                  discovered evidence. Judge: And what is the nature of the new evidence? Lawyer: Judge, I've discovered that my client still has $500 left.   An elderly man 82, just returned from the doctors only to find he didn't have long to live. So he summons the three most important people in his life (his doctor, his priest, his lawyer) to say, «Well today I've found out I don't have long to live. So I asked you three here, because you are the most important people in my life. And I need to ask a favour. Today I am going to give each of you an envelope with $50,000 dollars in it. When I die, I would ask that all three of you throw the money in my grave.» Well, a few days later the man passed on. The doctor said, «I have to admit I kept $10,000 dollars of his money, he owed me lots of medical bills. But I threw the other $40,000 in.» The Priest said, «I have to admit also I kept $25,000 dollars for the church. It's all going to a good cause. And I threw the rest in.» Well, the Lawyer just couldn't believe what he was hearing, «I am surprised at you two. I wrote a check for the whole amount and threw it in.»

Task 7. Study the text below, making sure you fully comprehend it. Where appropriate, consult English-Russian dictionaries and/or other reference & source books on law.


Common law is a term used to refer to the main body of English unwritten law that evolved from the 12th century. The name comes from the idea that English medieval law, as administered by the courts of the realm, reflected the «common» customs of the kingdom. This system of law prevails in Britain and in those countries, such as Canada and the United States, that were originally colonized by English settlers.

The common law is based on the principle of deciding cases by reference to previous judicial decisions, rather than to written statutes drafted by legislative bodies. Common law can be contrasted to the civil-law system, based on ancient Roman law, found in continental Europe and elsewhere. Whereas civil-law judges resolve disputes by referring to statutory principles arrived at in advance, common-law judges focus more intently on the facts of the particular case to arrive at a fair and equitable result for the litigants.

General rules or precedents are guidelines for judges deciding similar cases in the future. Subsequent cases, however, may reveal new and different facts and considerations, such as changing social or technological conditions. A common-law judge is then free to depart from precedent and establish a new rule of decision, which sets a new precedent as it is accepted and used by different judges in other cases. In this manner, common law retains a dynamic for change. As the U.S. Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. wrote in his book, The Common Law (1881): «The life of the [common] law has not been logic; it has been experience.»

Civil law is a term applied to a legal tradition originating in ancient Rome and to the contemporary legal systems based on this tradition. Modern civil law systems, which were originally developed in Western European countries, have spread throughout the world. The term civil law also applies to all legal proceedings that are not criminal. Under this definition laws regulating marriage, contracts, and payment for personal injury are examples of civil law.

The most obvious feature of a civil law system is the presence of a written code of law. The code is a systematic and comprehensive compilation of legal rules and principles. Although the contents of codes may vary widely from country to country, all codes are intended as a blueprint of social regulation that attempts to guide individuals through society from birth to death.

The civil law tradition makes a sharp distinction between private and public law. Private law includes the rules governing civil and commercial relationships such as marriage, divorce, and contractual agreements. Public law consists of matters that concern the government: constitutional law, criminal law, and administrative law. In many countries with civil law systems, two sets of courts exist—those that hear public law cases and those that address matters of private law.

The role of judges in civil law jurisdictions differs considerably from that of judges in common law systems. When different facts or new considerations arise, common law judges are free to depart from precedent and establish new law. The civil law tradition views judges as government officials who perform essential but uncreative functions. Civil law judges administer the codes that are written by legal scholars and enacted by legislators. They may also consult legal treatises on the issue in question. The civil law system assumes that there is only one correct solution to a specific legal problem. Therefore, judges are not expected to use judicial discretion or to apply their own interpretation to a case.


1. What does the term common law refer to?

2. In what countries does common law system prevail?

3. In what way can common law be contrasted to the civil-law system?

4. What is the main principle of the common law legal system?

5. What is the difference in resolving disputes between common-law judges and civil-law judges?

6. What is precedent?

7. When can a judge depart from the precedent?

8. What are the two meanings of the term civil law?

9. In what countries is civil law system used?

10. What is the distinction between private and public law?

11. What is the difference in the role of judges in civil law jurisdictions and in common law systems?

 Task 8. Find in the text above the English equivalents for the following words and expressions:

решать дело, ссылаясь на предыдущие судебные решения

составленные законодательными органами

разрешать споры

ссылаясь на предписанные законом принципы

добиться честного и справедливого результата для сторон

отклониться от прецедента и установить новую правовую норму

движущая сила для перемен

всеобъемлющий сборник правовых норм и принципов

программа социального регули-

правовые трактаты

свободный выбор судьи

Task 9. Fill in the gaps with the words and word combinations from the box:

evidence, legislators, differs substantially, changed, information, prior judicial decisions, hearings, advice


Civil law systems do not have any process like the common law practice of discovery — the pretrial search for _____ conducted by the parties involved in the case. The trial of a case under civil law also _______ from a common law trial, in which both parties present arguments and witnesses in open court. In civil law systems the judge supervises the collection of _____ and usually examines witnesses in private. Cross-examination of witnesses by the opposing party's attorney is rare. Instead, a civil law action consists of a series of meetings, _______, and letters through which testimony is taken, evidence is gathered, and judgment is rendered. This eliminates the need for a trial and, therefore, for a jury.

Systems of common law and civil law also differ in how law is created and how it can be _______. Common law is derived from custom and precedents (binding judgments made by _____________). In the common law system, the precedent itself is law. Therefore, the judges who decide which party will prevail in any given trial are also the creators of common law. Civil law, on the other hand, is made by ______ who try to supplement and modernize the codes, usually with the _____ of legal scholars. Civil law judges administer the law, but they do not create it.


1. How do trials under civil law differ from those under common law?

2. How is law created?

3. How can law be changed in both systems?

Task 10. Study the information below, making sure you  fully comprehend it. Answer the questions.

Criminal law is a branch of law that defines crimes and fixes punishments for them. Criminal law includes rules and procedures for preventing and investigating crimes and prosecuting criminals, as well as the regulations governing the constitution of courts, the organization of police forces, and the administration of penal institutions.

In general, the criminal law of most modern states classifies crimes as offenses against the safety of the state; offenses against the public welfare; offenses against property; and offenses threatening the lives or safety of persons.

In the US criminal law has a number of unique features. In determining the criminal law, the federal government and each of the state governments are sovereign within the limits of their authority as defined by the US Constitution. In many particulars the criminal law varies from state to state. The federal government and a number of states have formulated codes of criminal law.



1. What is criminal law? What does it include?

2. What kinds of offences are criminal?

3. What are the unique features of the US criminal law?


Task 11. Find the appropriate definitions of the offences listed in the left column of the table using the word combinations form the right column:


offence  правонарушение
burglary  кража со взломом
arson поджог
murder / homicide (преднамеренное) убийство
malice aforethought злой умысел
manslaughter убийство по неосторожности (непреднамеренное убийство)
tort деликт, гражданское правонарушение
felony тяжкое уголовное преступление
misdemeanor мелкое преступление, судебно наказуемый поступок
treason измена
theft / larceny кража, воровство
robbery ограбление (с применением насилия), грабёж
Terms Definitions
1) Burglary   2) Arson   3) Murder   4) Manslaughter   5) Tort   6) Offence   7) Felony   8) Misdemeanor   9) Treason   10) Theft   11) Robbery   a) is the unlawful killing of a person without malice. b) is a general category of violations of the rights of individuals. c) is an offence of unlawfully setting fire to property*. d) is any unlawful entry** or remaining in any building, with intent to commit any crime***. e) is an illegal act or omission****, or event, whether or not it is also a tort, a breach of contract or a breach of trust.***** f) is unlawful killing of another human being with malice. g) is taking another’s property unlawfully, with the intention of depriving the owner of its use. h) is a crime involving adherence to the enemy and rendering him aid and comfort. i) is a less serious crime such as driving without a valid license and creating a disturbance. j) is taking another person's property by violence or by putting him in fear. k) is a serious crime such as murder or arson.

* to set fire to property - поджечь собственность

** unlawful entry - незаконное проникновение

*** with intent to commit a crime - с намерением совершить преступление

**** an act or omission - действие или бездействие

***** a breach of contract - нарушение контракта

a breach of trust - нарушение доверенным лицом своих обязательств


Task 12. Study the information below, making sure you fully comprehend it. Answer the questions.



In the US and Great Britain the most serious crime is treason.

Treason is a criminal offense involving the attempt, by open acts, to overthrow the government to which the offender owes allegiance, or to betray the state to a foreign power.

Treason in English Law

Two grades of treason existed in early English law: high treason, which was directed against the Crown, and petty treason, which consisted of a crime against a subject, such as a wife killing her husband, or a servant murdering his master.

In early English statutes the most serious offenses were compassing or imagining the death of the sovereign, adhering to the sovereign's enemies and giving them aid and comfort, and levying war against the sovereign. Statutes were changed from time to time between the reign of Edward III and that of Elizabeth I. After the Restoration the Stuart judges used «constructive treason» to discourage resistance to the Crown. They extended the offenses to include words as well as deeds. In 1663, a writer was convicted of treason for writing an article suggesting that the king was accountable to the people.

Treason in US History

Article III, Section 3, of the U.S. Constitution follows the English law: «Treason against the United States shall consist only in levying war against them, or in adhering to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort. No person shall be convicted of treason unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or on confession in open court.»

At the end of the 17th century colonial law followed the English law of treason. During the French and Indian War some colonies considered trading with the enemy treasonous. Massachusetts in 1706 declared «correspondence» with the enemy to be treason. During the 1680s, Virginia attempted to punish the destruction of young tobacco plants, in order to control prices, as treason. In colonial days the penalty for conviction of treason followed the English law, providing for attainder, forfeiture, or loss of property, and the loss of all rights of inheritance. The sentence included the practice of hanging and quartering. Often, however, the colonial governor received a reversal of the judgment from the Crown.

During the American Revolution, charges of treason were brought against American supporters of the British government. Congress authorized the death penalty for American soldiers who supported King George III. Several men were hanged for enlisting soldiers in the king's army and for various other violations, such as furnishing supplies to the British. Many convicted traitors were pardoned.

In 1790, Congress fixed the penalty for treason as death by hanging. The accused was to enjoy certain procedural rights: a copy of the indictment; a list of jurors and witnesses at least three days before trial; representation by counsel; compulsory process for witnesses on behalf of the accused; and peremptory challenge of 35 members of the jury panel.

The first Americans convicted and executed for treason in peacetime were the engineer Julius Rosenberg (1918—53) and his wife Ethel Rosenberg (1915—53). The Rosenbergs, both members of the Communist party, were found guilty in 1951 of transmitting atomic military secrets to a Soviet spy, in a controversial trial. After several appeals to the U.S. Supreme Court and a refusal of clemency by President Eisenhower, the Rosenbergs were executed at Sing Sing Prison in Ossining, N.Y.


1. What is treason?

2. What grades of treason in early English law do you know?

3. What were the most serious offenses in early English statutes?

4. What kind of actions were treasonous in the US in the 17th century?

5. What were the penalties for these actions?

6. What were the rights of a person accused of treason in the 18th century?

7. What do you know about the Rosenberg trial?

Task 13. Find the appropriate definitions:

Attainder the loss of property or money because of a breach of a legal obligation
Traitor to change to the contrary
Reversing one who betrays another's trust or is false to an obligation or duty
Petty a challenge of a juror made as of right without assigning any cause
Forfeiture extinction of the civil rights and capacities of a person upon sentence of death or outlawry usually after a conviction of treason
Pardon the excusing of an offense without exacting a penalty
Peremptory challenge a challenge of a juror made with assigning a cause when the lawyer has a specific reason for thinking that the juror would not be able to be impartial
Challenge for cause having secondary rank or importance




Study the information below and give your opinion on animals as defendants.

Animals as defendants

Today, if an animal kills a human being, it is often «put to sleep» so it doesn't injure someone else. In medieval times, a killer animal was put on trial for similar «crimes.» Sounds weird? It gets more interesting. Animals who got in trouble the most were pigs. In 1266, a pig was tried in Fontenay-aux Roses (near Paris) and convicted of killing a child. Its sentence? Death by burning. Another pig that got in trouble was dressed in men's clothes and publicly executed in a French village. The year was 1386. The trial was held in Falaise on account of a child who had been injured in the face and arms. The accused, wearing a waistcoat, breeches, and white gloves, was sentenced to being mangled and maimed in the head and arms before being garroted and hanged at the village scaffold. The torture and punishment in itself is not so odd, considering the year; the peculiarity of the case is that the accused was a pig.

In seventeenth-century Russia, a goat butted a child down a flight of stairs, and was sentenced to one year in a prison camp in Siberia. In 1734, Franciscan friars in Brazil brought a suit against the termites that were damaging their houses. But the defense attorney spoke of the industriousness of the termites, and pointed out that they lived in Brazil before the monks. The court resolved it by ordering the monks to provide the termites with a reservation, and ordering the termites to leave the monastery and to live only within the reservation.

Some folks think stories about these trials are just folk tales. It is impossible to understand how a prosecutor could prove «criminal intent» on the part of an animal defendant! How would a non-thinking being suddenly become capable of thinking?

On the other hand, a respected French jurist and criminal lawyer wrote about animal trials in 1531. Bartholomew Chassenee recorded the kind of legal analysis applied during the centuries when the practice was used. People thought Satan was acting through animals when they destroyed human life. Sometimes the guilty animals were even excommunicated by the Catholic Church. In 1559, the Saxon vicar Daniel Greysser excommunicated the sparrows that infested his church.

Edward Payson Evans, in The Criminal Prosecution and Capital Punishment of Animals, theorized that the Church instigated such trials in order to unite the parishioners and inspire confidence in the authority and power of the church. There is likely to be some truth in this, but it should be noted that such trials were not restricted to the Middle Ages.

Lest we in the «modern» age get too smug about «unenlightened» medieval people, it's useful to keep in mind that the last known cases of a defendant animal «standing» trial happened in the 20th century, e.g., in 1906, in Switzerland. In 1926, a stray German Shepherd in Kentucky was charged with the attempted murder of a small child; it was sentenced to death and executed in the electric chair. In 1974, a judge in Tanzania sentenced a goat that had grazed on a private lawn to four days in jail. And in 1991, an Argentinean dog killed a child and was sentenced to lifetime imprisonment.

Modern sensibilities would, for the most part, see such trials as absurd. How, then, are we to understand such trials?


FUNNY LAWS ABOUT ANIMALS In Zion, it is illegal for anyone to give cats, dogs, or other domesticated animals a lighted cigar. In Indianapolis, no horse shall be driven or ridden on any street in the city at a speed in excess of ten (10) miles per hour. In Baltimore, it is illegal to take a lion to the movies. In Alaska, you may hunt a bear safely but it is illegal to wake a bear and take a picture for foto opportunities. In Arizona, US, donkeys cannot sleep in bathtubs and you may be imprisoned for 25 years for cutting down a cactus. It is illegal to chain an alligator to a fire hydrant in Alabama. It is illegal to carry a comb in your pocket in the state of Alabama In France, it is illegal to sell dolls and toys that do not have human faces. If an elephant is left tied to a parking meter, the parking fee has to be paid just as it would for a vehicle in Florida, USA. In Charleston, all carriage horses must wear nappies.

Task 14. Use the verbs related to legal matters given in the box to complete the sentences:

to withhold, to acquit, to drop (the case against smb), to serve, to award x 2, to return (a verdict), to appeal, to legislate


(1) The policeman warned him that it was illegal to ________ evidence.

(2) After consideration, the plaintiff _______ the case against his neighbour.

(3) He ______ two years in a local prison.

(4) The court ________ the plaintiff $20,000 in damages plus costs.

(5) Three of the men were sent to prison, but the judge _______ the fourth.

(6) The defendant says he cannot pay the amount the court has ______.

(7) After three hours deliberation the jury _______ a verdict of not guilty.

(8) She says she is innocent and she is going to ______ to the supreme court against the decision.

(9)Parliament has ______ against the sale of drugs.

Task 15. Study the table and give your own definitions to the crimes named below. Consult the dictionary if necessary.

Crime Criminal Criminal act
abuse abuser to abuse
Arson arsonist to set fire
Theft thief to steal
treason traitor to betray
assault assaulter to assault, to attack, to act in such a way as to make a victim believe he or she will be hurt
assault and battery assaulter to assault and inflict injury
assassination assassin to assassinate, to kill for political reasons
bigamy   bigamist to marry illegally, being already married
blackmail blackmailer to blackmail
bribery bribe-taker to bribe
burglary burglar to break into a house
mugging   mugger to mug, to attack in the street, to snatch handbags and telephones
robbery robber to rob
smuggling   smuggler to bring goods into a country illegally without paying tax
drug smuggling drug smuggler to carry drugs into another country illegally
drug dealing drug dealer to buy and sell drugs
embezzlement embezzler to embezzle, to peculate
espionage spy to spy, to get secret information
extortion extortioner to extort
forgery   forger to forge, to make false money or signatures
Fraud crook, fraud to fraud
fratricide murderer to kill a brother
hijacking hijacker to hijack, to take control of a vehicle by force
murder murderer to murder
homicide murderer to commit homicide
hooliganism   hooligan to cause damage or disturbance in public places
human trafficking     to buy and sell people and children and people's organs
kidnapping kidnapper to kidnap
Libel false accuser to libel, to publish a libel
manslaughter murderer to manslaughter, to kill by accident
stowaway stowaway to get a free journey
terrorism terrorist to use violence for political reasons, to organize explosions in public places
patricide murderer to kill parents
perjury perjurer to perjure
pickpocketing pickpocket to steal from people's pockets
Shop-lifting shop-lifter to steal in a supermarket
piracy pirate to copy copyrighted works
slander slanderer to make false accusation
vandalism vandal to inflict damage to property, to cause damage to property deliberately



Read the following paragraph. What is the difference between 'slander' and 'libel' (клевета)?


           The door opened quickly. Denise Vanech with her tan skin and white hair pushed her head through the door. "I'll sue you for libel."

           "Slander. Libel is for the printed word. Slander is for the spoken. You mean slander. But either way, you'd have to prove what I'm saying is untrue. And we both know better."

(After Harlen Coben. No second chance. P. 295)



Task 16. Make as many word combinations as possible matching the left and right columns:

to betray a crime
to break Unfairly
mitigating Evidence
a false a case
jury Punishment
to commit red-handed
to inflict Injury
selected at random
suspended Sentence
to be brought Verdict
to be caught Law
capital Accuser
to withhold your country
to treat Circumstances
to hear before the judge


FUNNY LAWS In Los Angeles, it is not legal to bathe two babies at the same time in the same tub. In Walnut, no person shall wear a mask or disguise on a public street without a permit from the sheriff. Colorado Water laws prohibit the use of rain barrels or any methods to catch rain for use. They claim the rain has already been legally allocated to the state and individual may not capture and use water to which he/she does not have a right. In Nebraska, it is not legal for a tavern owner to serve beer unless a nice kettle of soup is also brewing. In New York, it is against the law to throw a ball at someone's head for fun. In Carmel, a man cannot be seen in public while wearing a jacket and pants that do not match. In Greece, during a concert, it is illegal to eat peanuts and walk backwards on the sidewalks. In Ocean City, it is illegal to eat in the street in residential neighborhoods, and the only beverage you can drink on the beach is water in a clear plastic bottle. In Ocean City, it is illegal for men to go topless in the center of town. According to a British law that was passed in 1845, suicide was considered a capital offense that was punishable by hanging. In Thailand, it is illegal to leave your home without underwear. In Switzerland, it is illegal to leave your car keys inside an unlocked vehicle.

 Task 17. Translate the following text into English and comment on the stupidest law:

Самые странные законы разных стран

Законы Венеции (Италия) запрещают кормить голубей, находиться в общественном месте без рубашки, забираться в фонтаны и есть бутерброды на пешеходном переходе. Штраф за кормление голубей — $600. А в Риме нельзя нырять в фонтаны.

В Германии остановка на автобанах запрещается даже в том случае, если у водителя закончился бензин. Кроме того, нельзя идти по трассе пешком. Штраф за нарушение этих правил может достигать $100.

В Таиланде запрещено ездить в машине или на мотоцикле без рубашки. Штраф доходит до нескольких сот бат (около $10).

Во Франции и Англии нельзя целоваться на железнодорожных вок-
залах. Впрочем, за это не штрафуют.

В Гренаде опасно разгуливать по городу в купальном костюме. Штраф — $270.

В Дании обязательно нужно включать автомобильные фары, иначе штраф — $100.

Столько же с вас возьмут в Сингапуре, если вы жуете жвачку, кормите птиц, плюете на улице или забудете спустить воду в общественном туалете.

(По материалам информагентств и туристических сайтов)


 Task 18. Translate the following text into Russian in written form. Answer the questions after the text.

Kinds of Law

There are a lot of types of law except Criminal and Civil Law. The most common kinds of law are the International Law, Civil Law, Criminal Law, Tort Law, Property Law, Labor Law, Commercial Law and so many others.

International Law

Traditionally, International Law consisted of rules and principles governing the relations and dealings of nations with each other, though recently, the scope of international law has been redefined to include relations between states and individuals, and relations between international organizations. Public international law, concerns itself only with questions of rights between several nations or nations and the citizens or subjects of other nations. In contrast, Private international law deals with controversies between private persons, natural or juridical, arising out of situations having significant relationship to more than one nation. In recent years the line between public and private international law has become increasingly uncertain. Issues of private international law may also implicate issues of public international law, and many matters of private international law have substantial significance for the international community of nations.

International Law includes the basic, classic concepts of law in national legal systems — status, property, obligation, and tort (or delict). It also includes substantive law, procedure, process and remedies. International Law is rooted in acceptance by the nation states which constitute the system. The following are major substantive fields of International Law: International Economic Law; International Security Law; International Criminal Law; International Environmental Law; Diplomatic Law; International Humanitarian Law or Law of War; International Human Rights Law.

Customary law and conventional law are primary sources of international law. Customary international law results when states follow certain practices generally and consistently out of a sense of legal obligation. Recently the customary law was codified in the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties. Conventional international law derives from international agreements and may take any form that the contracting parties agree upon. Agreements may be made in respect to any matter except to the extent that the agreement conflicts with the rules of international law incorporating basic standards of international conduct or the obligations of a member state under the Charter of the United Nations. International agreements create law for the parties of the agreement. They may also lead to the creation of customary international law when they are intended for adherence generally and are in fact widely accepted. Customary law and law made by international agreement have equal authority as international law. Parties may assign higher priority to one of the sources by agreement. However, some rules of international law are recognized by international community as peremptory, permitting no derogation. Such rules can be changed or modified only by a subsequent peremptory norm of international law.

General principles common to systems of national law is a secondary source of international law. There are situations where neither conventional nor customary international law can be applicable. In this case a general principle may be invoked as a rule of international law because it is a general principle common to the major legal systems of the world and not inappropriate for international claims.

Traditionally, states were the main subject of international law. Increasingly, individuals and non-state international organizations have also become subject to international regulation.

International law imposes upon the nations certain duties with respect to individuals. It is a violation of international law to treat an alien in a manner which does not satisfy the international standard of justice. However in the absence of a specific agreement an individual cannot bring the complaint. Only the state of which he is a national can complain of such a violation before an international tribunal. The state of nationality usually is not obligated to exercise this right and can decide whether to enforce it.

Tort Law

Torts are civil wrongs recognized by law as grounds for a lawsuit. These wrongs result in an injury or harm constituting the basis for a claim by the injured party. While some torts are also crimes punishable with imprisonment, the primary aim of tort law is to provide relief for the damages incurred and deter others from committing the same harms. The injured person may sue for an injunction to prevent the continuation of the tortious conduct or for monetary damages.

Among the types of damages the injured party may recover are: loss of earnings capacity, pain and suffering, and reasonable medical expenses. They include both present and future expected losses.

There are numerous specific torts including trespass, assault, battery, negligence, products liability, and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

Torts fall into three general categories: intentional torts (e.g., intentionally hitting a person); negligent torts (e.g., causing an accident by failing to obey traffic rules); and strict liability torts (e.g., liability for making and selling defective products). Intentional torts are those wrongs which the defendant knew or should have known would occur through their actions or inactions. Negligent torts occur when the defendant's actions were unreasonably unsafe. Strict liability wrongs do not depend on the degree of carefulness by the defendant, but are established when a particular action causes damage.

There are also separate areas of tort law including nuisance, defamation, invasion of privacy, and a category of economic torts.

Property Law

Property law is the area of law that governs the various forms of ownership in real property (land as distinct from personal or movable possessions) and in personal property, within the common law legal system. In the civil law system, there is a division between movable and immovable property. Movable property roughly corresponds to personal property, while immovable property corresponds to real estate or real property, and the associated rights and obligations thereon.

Labor Law

The goal of labor laws is to equalize the bargaining power between employers and employees. The laws primarily deal with the relationship between employers and unions. Labor laws grant employees the right to unionize and allow employers and employees to engage in certain activities (e.g. strikes, picketing, seeking injunctions, lockouts) so as to have their demands fulfilled.

Commercial Law

Commercial law governs the broad areas of business, commerce, and consumer transactions. Specific law has developed in a number of commercial fields. These include:

Bankruptcy (Bankruptcy law provides for the development of a plan that allows a debtor, who is unable to pay his creditors, to resolve his debts through the division of his assets among his creditors. This supervised division also allows the interests of all creditors to be treated with some measure of equality. Certain bankruptcy proceedings allow a debtor to stay in business and use revenue generated to resolve his or her debts. An additional purpose of bankruptcy law is to allow certain debtors to free themselves (to be discharged) of the financial obligations they have accumulated, after their assets are distributed, even if their debts have not been paid in full.)

Consumer credit (credit allows consumers to finance transactions without having to pay the full cost of the merchandise at the time of the transaction. A common form of consumer credit is a credit card account issued by a financial institution. Merchants may also provide financing for products which they sell. Banks may directly finance purchases through loans and mortgages.)

Contracts (contracts are promises that the law will enforce. The law provides remedies if a promise is breached or recognizes the performance of a promise as a duty. Contracts arise when a duty does or may come into existence, because of a promise made by one of the parties. To be legally binding as a contract, a promise must be exchanged for adequate consideration. Adequate consideration is a benefit or detriment which a party receives which reasonably and fairly induces them to make the promise/contract. For example, promises that are purely gifts are not considered enforceable because the personal satisfaction the grantor of the promise may receive from the act of giving is normally not considered adequate consideration. Certain promises that are not considered contracts may, in limited circumstances, be enforced if one party has relied to his detriment on the assurances of the other party.)

Debtor and creditor (debtor-creditor law governs situations where one party is unable to pay a monetary debt to another. There are three types of creditors. First are those who have a lien against a particular piece of property. This property (or proceeds from its sale) must be used to satisfy the debt to the lien-creditor before it can be used to satisfy debts to other creditors. A lien may arise through statute, agreement between the parties, or judicial proceedings. Secondly, a creditor may have a priority interest. A priority arises through statutory law. If a creditor has a priority his debt must be paid when the debtor becomes insolvent before other debts. The final type of creditor is one who has neither a lien against the debtor's property or is the subject of a statutory priority.)

Mortgages (A mortgage involves the transfer of an interest in land as security for a loan or other obligation. It is the most common method of financing real estate transactions.)



1. What is the difference between public and private international law?

2. What subjects of international law do you know?

3. What general categories do torts fall into? What is the difference between them?

4. What separate areas of tort law are there?

5. What areas does commercial law govern?




Read the text below to discuss the situation with your peers,             answer the questions and give your opinion on the problem.

Дата: 2019-02-02, просмотров: 52.