What are the five types of law?

Five Types of Law

Common law is law that is established by previous decisions, setting precedents for future cases of similar issue. This is an important element of the way that the American system works, which was borrowed from the English tradition. Often it is referred to as “judge-made” law.

Statutory law is law that is formally established by a legislative body, and is somewhat the opposite of common law. Constitutional law is law that comes from specific interpretations of the Constitution of the United States. This kind of law is particularly important in considering the supreme law of the land, both federally and state, and is controlled in large part by the decision-making of the Supreme Court. Administrative law is something that is more of a modern phenomenon. Agencies in the federal bureaucracy will typically establish these kinds of laws that exist more so in the form of regulation.

Criminal and civil law combines to cover a large area of the legal system. While criminal law consists of actions that are taken against the public’s trust, civil law is offenses from one party against another. Infringing on either the social order or the personal rights of another party is subject to criminal and civil law.