What Should You Do After A Car Accident?

The Common Law

Here in the United States, we have a tradition that goes back to the founding of the individual colonies in regards to law. We apply the common law in many of our cases. This tradition is one brought over from England by colonists and has been continually used since then.

The common law is legal precedent made through the decisions of judges and courts over the years. It involves applying the holdings from appeals cases and other situations to the specific circumstances of the case before the court. This is different from countries that apply codes in that there could very well be a complete lack of statute on a topic.

Even if there is a statute, defining the terms of the statute can be based on the common or case law. So, for example, if a statute or rule has something about a statement, like the Federal Rule defining “hearsay,” it falls to the courts to determine what is and is not a statement for hearsay purposes. The same idea can be applied to a wide variety of terms in statutes and even in the Constitution.

In the Constitution, there is the phrase under the powers of Congress in Article I saying that Congress can “regulate commerce.” Almost from the beginning, there has been debate as to what exactly it means to “regulate commerce” and what “commerce” means as well. As a result, there is a robust amount of case law and rules from various decisions that can be applied to future questions about “commerce” and its regulation. Congress has never passed a statute saying what “commerce” is but we have definitions now through the actions of judges across the country.

Contact a Jacksonville Personal Injury Lawyer

If you have been injured by someone’s intentional or negligent actions, contact a Jacksonville personal injury lawyer from the Law Offices of Donald Guthrie at 904-296-1088.

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