When it comes to the sources of law, some countries apply a greater weight to specific types than others, including judicial decisions. Basically, there are 2 key types of legal systems in the world, common and civil laws, which most countries adopt nowadays. You should understand that there are both differences and similarities between them, and that’s why it’s worth making a detailed comparison.
First, take a look at common law concepts, and the main thing that should be studied is that those countries that follow them are the ones that were former British protectorates or colonies, such as the US. The most important features of this legal system include the fact that there can be no written codified laws or constitution and judicial decisions are bindings so that they can be overturned only by the same court. Don’t forget about the extensive freedom of contract because there are only a few provisions that are implied into contracts by laws. This means that everything is allowed that is not expressly banned by them.
Another important aspect that should be understood is that common law concepts are less prescriptive than civil law rules. Therefore, the government may want to enshrine certain protections to its citizens in a specific legislation. As an example, it may want to prohibit given service providers from cutting off the electricity or water supply of bad payers, or it may require the documents related to transactions to be disclosed under the freedom of information acts. Besides, pay attention to the legal requirements that must be met when it comes to any contract in equal bargaining provisions where one side is in a better bargaining position than the other one. There are certain provisions implied into contracts according to common law concepts so that you need to check all the relevant terms to end up with a contract that is longer than the one if civil law regions.
When it comes to civil law concepts, those countries that follow them include the ones that were former German, Dutch, French, and other protectorates and colonies, including a big part of South and Central America. It’s interesting that most East Asian, Eastern and Central European countries follow this kind of legal system which is codified and takes origins from Roman laws. In conclusion, its important features include a written constitution that is based on specific codes and courts don’t follow previous judicial decisions.
When it comes to the sources of law, some countries apply a greater weight to specific types than others, including judicial decisions. Basically, there are 2 key types of legal systems in the world, common and civil laws, which most countries adopt nowadays.