A lawyer or attorney is a person who practices law, as an advocate, attorney at law, barrister-at-law, bar-at-law, civil law notary, counselor, counselor at law, chartered legal executive, or public servant preparing and applying law, but not as a paralegal or charter executive secretary. Working as a lawyer involves the practical application of abstract legal theories and knowledge to solve specific individualized problems, or to advance the interests of those who hire lawyers to perform legal services; the role of the lawyer varies across legal jurisdictions, so it can be treated here in only the most general terms. In practice, legal jurisdictions exercise their right to determine, recognized as being a lawyer; as a result, the meaning of the term "lawyer" may vary from place to place. Some jurisdictions have two types of lawyers and solicitors, whilst others fuse the two. A barrister is a lawyer. A solicitor is a lawyer, trained to prepare cases and give advice on legal subjects and can represent people in lower courts.
Both barristers and solicitors have gone through law school, completed the requisite practical training. However, in jurisdictions where there is a split-profession, only barristers are admitted as members of their respective bar association. In Australia, the word "lawyer" can be used to refer to both barristers and solicitors, whoever is admitted as a lawyer of the Supreme Court of a state or territory. In Canada, the word "lawyer" only refers to individuals who have been called to the bar or, in Quebec, have qualified as civil law notaries. Common law lawyers in Canada are formally and properly called "barristers and solicitors", but should not be referred to as "attorneys", since that term has a different meaning in Canadian usage, being a person appointed under a power of attorney. However, in Quebec, civil law advocates call themselves "attorney" and sometimes "barrister and solicitor" in English, all lawyers in Quebec, or lawyers in the rest of Canada when practising in French, are addressed with the honorific title, "Me." or "Maître".
In England and Wales, "lawyer" is used to refer to persons who provide reserved and unreserved legal activities and includes practitioners such as barristers, solicitors, registered foreign lawyers, patent attorneys, trade mark attorneys, licensed conveyancers, public notaries, commissioners for oaths, immigration advisers and claims management services. The Legal Services Act 2007 defines the "legal activities" that may only be performed by a person, entitled to do so pursuant to the Act.'Lawyer' is not a protected title. In Pakistan, the term "Advocate" is used instead of lawyer in The Legal Practitioners and Bar Councils Act, 1973. In India, the term "lawyer" is colloquially used, but the official term is "advocate" as prescribed under the Advocates Act, 1961. In Scotland, the word "lawyer" refers to a more specific group of trained people, it includes advocates and solicitors. In a generic sense, it may include judges and law-trained support staff. In the United States, the term refers to attorneys who may practice law.
It is never used to refer to patent paralegals. In fact, there are statutory and regulatory restrictions on non-lawyers like paralegals practicing law. Other nations tend to have comparable terms for the analogous concept. In most countries civil law countries, there has been a tradition of giving many legal tasks to a variety of civil law notaries and scriveners; these countries do not have "lawyers" in the American sense, insofar as that term refers to a single type of general-purpose legal services provider. It is difficult to formulate accurate generalizations that cover all the countries with multiple legal professions, because each country has traditionally had its own peculiar method of dividing up legal work among all its different types of legal professionals. Notably, the mother of the common law jurisdictions, emerged from the Dark Ages with similar complexity in its legal professions, but evolved by the 19th century to a single dichotomy between barristers and solicitors. An equivalent dichotomy developed between procurators in some civil law countries.
Several countries that had two or more legal professions have since fused or united their professions into a single type of lawyer. Most countries in this category are common law countries, though France, a civil law country, merged its jurists in 1990 and 1991 in response to Anglo-American competition. In countries with fused professions, a lawyer is permitted to carry out all or nearly all the responsibilities listed below. Arguing a client's case before a judge or jury in a court of law is the traditional province of the barrister in England, of advocates in some civil law jurisdictions. However, the boundary between barristers and solicitors has evolved. In England today, the barrister monopoly covers only appellate courts, barristers must compete directly with solicitors in many trial courts. In countries like the United States, that have fused legal professions, there are trial lawyers who specialize in trying cases in court, but trial lawyers do not have a de jure monopoly like barristers.
In some countries, litigants have the option of arguing pro
In law, a trial is a coming together of parties to a dispute, to present information in a tribunal, a formal setting with the authority to adjudicate claims or disputes. One form of tribunal is a court; the tribunal, which may occur before a judge, jury, or other designated trier of fact, aims to achieve a resolution to their dispute. Where the trial is held before a group of members of the community, it is called a jury trial. Where the trial is held before a judge, it is called a bench trial. Hearings before administrative bodies may have many of the features of a trial before a court, but are not referred to as trials. An appellate proceeding is generally not deemed a trial, because such proceedings are restricted to review of the evidence presented before the trial court, do not permit the introduction of new evidence. Trials can be divided by the type of dispute at issue. A criminal trial is designed to resolve accusations brought against a person accused of a crime. In common law systems, most criminal defendants are entitled to a trial held before a jury.
Because the state is attempting to use its power to deprive the accused of life, liberty, or property, the rights of the accused afforded to criminal defendants are broad. The rules of criminal procedure provide rules for criminal trials. A civil trial is held to settle lawsuits or civil claims—non-criminal disputes. In some countries, the government can both be sued in a civil capacity; the rules of civil procedure provide rules for civil trials. Although administrative hearings are not ordinarily considered trials, they retain many elements found in more "formal" trial settings; when the dispute goes to judicial setting, it is called an administrative trial, to revise the administrative hearing, depending on the jurisdiction. The types of disputes handled in these hearings is governed by administrative law and auxiliarily by the civil trial law. Labor law is the body of laws, administrative rulings, precedents which address the legal rights of, restrictions on, working people and their organizations.
As such, it mediates many aspects of the relationship between trade unions and employees. In Canada, employment laws related to unionized workplaces are differentiated from those relating to particular individuals. In most countries however, no such distinction is made. However, there are two broad categories of labour law. First, collective labour law relates to the tripartite relationship between employee and union. Second, individual labour law concerns employees' rights through the contract for work; the labour movement has been instrumental in the enacting of laws protecting labour rights in the 19th and 20th centuries. Labour rights have been integral to the social and economic development since the industrial revolution. There are two primary systems for conducting a trial: Adversarial: In common law systems, an adversarial or accusatory approach is used to adjudicate guilt or innocence; the assumption is that the truth is more to emerge from the open contest between the prosecution and the defense in presenting the evidence and opposing legal arguments with a judge acting as a neutral referee and as the arbiter of the law.
In several jurisdictions in more serious cases, there is a jury to determine the facts, although some common law jurisdictions have abolished the jury trial. This polarizes the issues, with each competitor acting in its own self-interest, so presenting the facts and interpretations of the law in a deliberately biased way; the intention is that through a process of argument and counter-argument, examination-in-chief and cross-examination, each side will test the truthfulness and sufficiency of the opponent's evidence and arguments. To maintain fairness, there is a presumption of innocence, the burden of proof lies on the prosecution. Critics of the system argue. Further, the results are to be affected by structural inequalities; those defendants with resources can afford to hire the best lawyers. Some trials are—or were—of a more summary nature, as certain questions of evidence were taken as resolved. Inquisitorial: In civil law legal systems, the responsibility for supervising the investigation by the police into whether a crime has been committed falls on an examining magistrate or judge who conducts the trial.
The assumption is that the truth is more to emerge from an impartial and exhaustive investigation both before and during the trial itself. The examining magistrate or judge acts as an inquisitor who directs the fact-gathering process by questioning witnesses, interrogating the suspect, collecting other evidence; the lawyers who represent the interests of the State and the accused have a limited role to offer legal arguments and alternative interpretations to the facts that emerge during the process. All the interested parties are expected to co-operate in the investigation by answering the magistrate or judge's questions and, when asked, supplying all relevant evidence; the trial only takes place after all the evidence has been collected and the investigation is completed. Thus, most of the factual uncertainties will be resolved, the examining magistrate or judge will have resolved that there is prima facie of guilt. Critics argue that the examining magistrate or judge has too much power in that he or she will both investigate and adjudicate on the merits of the case.
Although lay assessors do sit as a form of jury to offer advice to the magistrate or judge at the conclusion of the trial, their role is subordinate. Further, because a professio
Law is a system of rules that are created and enforced through social or governmental institutions to regulate behavior. It has been defined both as "the Science of Justice" and "the Art of Justice". Law is a system that regulates and ensures that individuals or a community adhere to the will of the state. State-enforced laws can be made by a collective legislature or by a single legislator, resulting in statutes, by the executive through decrees and regulations, or established by judges through precedent in common law jurisdictions. Private individuals can create binding contracts, including arbitration agreements that may elect to accept alternative arbitration to the normal court process; the formation of laws themselves may be influenced by a constitution, written or tacit, the rights encoded therein. The law shapes politics, economics and society in various ways and serves as a mediator of relations between people. A general distinction can be made between civil law jurisdictions, in which a legislature or other central body codifies and consolidates their laws, common law systems, where judge-made precedent is accepted as binding law.
Religious laws played a significant role in settling of secular matters, is still used in some religious communities. Islamic Sharia law is the world's most used religious law, is used as the primary legal system in some countries, such as Iran and Saudi Arabia; the adjudication of the law is divided into two main areas. Criminal law deals with conduct, considered harmful to social order and in which the guilty party may be imprisoned or fined. Civil law deals with the resolution of lawsuits between individuals and/or organizations. Law provides a source of scholarly inquiry into legal history, economic analysis and sociology. Law raises important and complex issues concerning equality and justice. Numerous definitions of law have been put forward over the centuries; the Third New International Dictionary from Merriam-Webster defines law as: "Law is a binding custom or practice of a community. The Dictionary of the History of Ideas published by Scribner's in 1973 defined the concept of law accordingly as: "A legal system is the most explicit, institutionalized, complex mode of regulating human conduct.
At the same time, it plays only one part in the congeries of rules which influence behavior, for social and moral rules of a less institutionalized kind are of great importance." There have been several attempts to produce "a universally acceptable definition of law". In 1972, one source indicated. McCoubrey and White said that the question "what is law?" has no simple answer. Glanville Williams said that the meaning of the word "law" depends on the context in which that word is used, he said that, for example, "early customary law" and "municipal law" were contexts where the word "law" had two different and irreconcilable meanings. Thurman Arnold said that it is obvious that it is impossible to define the word "law" and that it is equally obvious that the struggle to define that word should not be abandoned, it is possible to take the view that there is no need to define the word "law". The history of law links to the development of civilization. Ancient Egyptian law, dating as far back as 3000 BC, contained a civil code, broken into twelve books.
It was based on the concept of Ma'at, characterised by tradition, rhetorical speech, social equality and impartiality. By the 22nd century BC, the ancient Sumerian ruler Ur-Nammu had formulated the first law code, which consisted of casuistic statements. Around 1760 BC, King Hammurabi further developed Babylonian law, by codifying and inscribing it in stone. Hammurabi placed several copies of his law code throughout the kingdom of Babylon as stelae, for the entire public to see; the most intact copy of these stelae was discovered in the 19th century by British Assyriologists, has since been transliterated and translated into various languages, including English, Italian and French. The Old Testament dates back to 1280 BC and takes the form of moral imperatives as recommendations for a good society; the small Greek city-state, ancient Athens, from about the 8th century BC was the first society to be based on broad inclusion of its citizenry, excluding women and the slave class. However, Athens had no legal science or single word for "law", relying instead on the three-way distinction between divine law, human decree and custom.
Yet Ancient Greek law contained major constitutional innovations in the development of democracy. Roman law was influenced by Greek philosophy, but its detailed rules were developed by professional jurists and were sophisticated. Over the centuries between the rise and decline of the Roman Empire, law was adapted to cope with the changing social situations and underwent major codification under Theodosius II and Justinian I. Although codes were replaced by custom and case law during the Dark Ages, Roman law was rediscovered around the 11th century when medieval legal scholars began to research Roman codes and adapt their concepts. Latin legal maxims were compiled for guidance. In medieval England, royal