Legal, in its broadest sense, is the application of laws to conduct that have legal validity. As in civil profession or to attorneys, in the legal profession. Etymology: From the Latin verb legal, relating to lawyers. Having its source in the legal law, including the corpus of the legislation. The corpus of laws that comprises the body of legislation commonly referred to as “the law”.
The civil law jurisdictions are those countries that were established after the dissolution of the former Holy Roman Empire of the European Medieval period, that were under the Western Roman Empire in Europe. Other common law jurisdictions include England and Ireland. While the main article of this article is “law”, it is understood to cover all matters that fall under the jurisdictions defined as “law courts”. Within the jurisdiction of the courts there are three levels of courts.
There are no international instruments that define the jurisdiction of the courts within any of the common law jurisdictions. For example, there is absolutely no certainty that the jurisdiction of the federal district court will extend to a state court within a state. This is because jurisdiction and venue are determined by the laws of the states. Each state has the power to define what it does not permit within its sovereign borders. Each state is also responsible for determining whether it is a crime or not within its jurisdiction and thus each state has a criminal justice system that is separate from and inferior to the system that exists in the common law jurisdictions.
The federal system of the United States is a confederal system. Although it is widely thought that the US Congress has concurrent jurisdiction over civil law matters outside of its territories, the US Congress alone possesses the power to change laws within its territory. Furthermore, the US Supreme Court shares power with the Federal Trade Commissions of the individual states in creating regulations and rulings that bind those states. Because of this tie between the federal government and the states, the main article on jurisdiction is essentially not resolved.
Common law jurisdictions have been recognized as legal systems outside of the United States since International law was created in the nineteenth century. This includes the entire body of judgments and opinions from common law jurisdictions that bind the people of the United States. There are two categories of judgments: federal and criminal. A federal decision is legally binding upon all citizens within the United States while a criminal decision is only legally binding on one party to the decision (i.e. the person who is accused of committing the crime).
The issue of the nature of legality has been a long running one. The argument that the existence of the United States as a nation-state is not founded on legality is often cited most frequently in support of a claim of separation of powers. The lack of a common law system means that there are no universal legal rules that apply across all states. No international law exists that binds the citizens of the United States, nor does any single interpretation of international law apply to all individuals within the United States. This is a vast topic that are the subject of many books and articles, and I do not intend to present all of the arguments in detail here. My intent is to provide a quick overview of some of the most common arguments regarding the nature of legality and their relationship to international law.