The Fundamental Functions of Law


Law is an important part of society. It shapes society, politics, and economics. Law also plays an important role in the formation of constitutions. It also serves as a mediator in relationships between individuals. Throughout history, laws have shaped people and nations. Read this article to learn more about the fundamental functions of law.

Rule of law

The Rule of Law is an important part of a country’s political system. But it can be undermined by legislation, which purports to remove legal accountability for state actions or preclude judicial review of executive actions. Such legislation can also be controversial, as people may wonder about the content of a particular enactment. The problem with legislation is that it can turn the rule of law into a rule of men.

While many legal philosophers focus on the formal elements of Rule of Law, it is often the case that the most important element is the absence of corruption, independence of the judiciary, and the presumption of liberty that people value.

Functions of law

Law serves various functions in a society. These include ensuring order and maintaining social peace, resolving disputes, and protecting individual rights. Laws are also important in preventing the abuse of power by public officials. The 1999 US Constitution created the legislature, executive branch, and judiciary to perform these roles. The purposes of law are not limited to these four areas, but they do constitute some of the fundamental functions of law.

The basic function of law is to regulate behaviour. This is done by preventing undesirable behaviour and ensuring desirable behavior. Other important functions of law include redistribution of goods and services, regulating human relationships, and establishing the procedure for changing the law.

Characteristics of a rule of law system

A rule of law system is a system in which citizens respect and accept legal norms and determinations. This prevents arbitrary use of power by the state and other entities. It also ensures that the same rules apply to everyone. People benefit from this because they can plan their lives more effectively and know what will happen legally.

There are two main types of rule of law systems. One type is a primarily legislative system. This system has laws that express rights and duties and provides remedies for citizens. These rules are published in advance and are accessible to citizens. Some voids in the laws may be filled through equity, general principles, and the spirit of law.


Precedents in law are the decisions of prior courts in a particular area of law. Precedents are very important in law and are used in many different ways by lawyers and legal critics. Precedents are also important to students studying law because they can give them a sense of what has been done before. They can also serve as indicators of what the courts are likely to rule on in the future. However, precedents have their downsides.

The use of precedents is controversial in some circles. For example, precedents may become anti-canonical if a new public official takes over. This is because new decision makers may seek to differentiate themselves from their predecessors by overturning a precedent.

Courts as source of law

There are three main sources of law in the United States: the US Constitution, state constitutions, and case law. Constitutions, which are generally created by states, regulate government action, and case law interprets statutes. The US Constitution sets forth the rules and standards for the legal system, which includes federal and state laws.

Besides statutes, courts can also cite scholarly literature. These writings are often helpful in interpreting a statute. For example, legal scholars analyze statutes before they are referred to courts, and many courts use these analyses in interpreting statutes.

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