• Incorporated company is a legal person but not a natural person
  • Criminal law: Society‚Äôs view of what is acceptable or not
    • Crown prosecution service
    • Theft, murder, selling pirated software
    • Prove beyond reasonable doubt
  • Civil law:
    • Relationship between people
    • Compensation, take action or refrain from action. No punishment
    • Using pirated software
    • Balance of probabilities
  • Civil and criminal law are made:
    • Statute law: By act of parliament
      • Green paper, white paper, bill (House of commons), discussed and changed, House of Lords, Commons, Royal Assent
      • Computer Misuse Act 1990
    • Common law: Judges
      • By precedent, previous cases. May be decided to change
      • Can use common law from other countries e.g. USA and Singapore
    • Case law: Interpretation of acts of parliament by judges
    • Secondary legislation:
      • Act of parliament gives government power to introduce regulations (statutory instruments) that are laid before parliament and debated if a member calls for a debate.
      • Copyright and Rihts in Database Regulations 1997
      • Companies Regulations 1992
      • Transfer of Undertakings Regulations 1981
    • EU Law:
      • EU issues directives approved by Euro parliament and Council of Ministers
      • Member states required to enact legislation and give effect to directives
      • Euro court of justice handles interpretation when in question
    • Legal systems in other countries:
      • Distinction between civil and criminal law is universal
      • Common law largely restricted to countries that have been ruled by Britain
      • Euro countries other than UK have legal systems based on Roman law: Written civil and criminal codes
      • Most large countries have bicameral legislature. Small countries have unicameral ones.
      • In some countries (UK) second chamber only has revising function. In some countries (US) they can initiate legislation.
      • Federal states duplicate the legislative structure at the level of individual states. Often tension between state law and federal law.
    • Constitutions:
      • How country is governed
      • Rights of citizens
      • How law is made and enforced
      • With constitution there is a Supreme Court which can strike out legislation contrary to consitution.
      • In the UK, the doctrine of Sovereignity of Parliament means if parliament passes legislation courts cannot block it.