The Common Law System of Precedent

Precedent Common Law System

Common law is the law of the body that is customarily deployed upon judicial decisions and incorporates reports of cases that have been decided. The courts in England have managed the Common Law since some days back. It has emitted the legal system found in British courts and Wales. The Common law has now spread widely in European and other continents. In international law, the United Kingdom is a hegemon state that comprises the legal system. England, Scotland, and Wales are the countries with the primary legal system. In history, England’s standard law system has influenced Ireland directly while Scotland partially. The legal system in the United Kingdom encountered integration into the system of the European Union law.

The United Kingdom quit the European Union a few years ago. The rights of the human regime represented by the European Convention on Human rights have examined similar sway in the United Kingdom since the passage by parliament of the human rights. Common law sways the decision-making process in unusual cases where the results cannot be considered deployed on existing statutes. Common law is very relevant since it inspects the actual responses. The law is much more responsive than the parliamentary law. Common law replies rapidly to the community, thus altering values.

The Common Law Doctrine of Precedent

The precedent doctrine needs the lower courts to follow the decision made up by the higher courts. The judicature follows the earlier decision of themselves or either of other courts with a similar level, for instance, Matthews, the master leading in the Chancery Division of the High Court judge. With the presence of his less power, he concluded that a leader deploying the jurisdiction of the High Court is consolidated by decisions significant in the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court. The master route to conclusion offers a significant general view of the development steps. Additionally, the master argued that both judges are in the same jurisdiction. Matthews notes that a master has more and adequate experience in some types of disputes. These masters were the officers in the court; hence they were not judges.

Even though the master gives the entire overview, by declining this argument, he said that the claimant’s representative would have been aware that the judges had picked the opposite view in the same situation. Furthermore, the master noted that a High Court judge would follow the decision of a fellow High Court judge until been convinced that the first decision was wrong. According to the claimant, a master is made up of the decisions of a High Court judge. The claimant conveys that the decisions of judges of the High Court are binding on other judges who are at the low level of the hierarchy of authority. Moreover, that particular master can perform all the judicial functions of the High Court. Thus occupies an office at a lower level instead of the High Court Judge in the hierarchy of authority.

The Importance of Precedent in Common Law

In the system of common law, judges are the ones to make the policies that are meant to be observed. They make the policies consistent with judicial decisions on a similar subject. The constitution accepted the English common law as the beginning point for the law of Britain. The situations that encompassed the rules, policies, and regulations also arose. Each case that the common law court decided becomes a precedent for the subsequent decisions encompassing disputes that are the same. The decisions fail to bind the legislature, which can give outlaws to overrule the decisions of the unpopular court. If the unconstitutional Supreme Court considers these laws, the United Kingdom will seize the common law precedent cases. To better understand how the common law works, assume that there is a hypothetical drug. Thus, it is addictive and makes the user lose interest in heading to their work. As a result, this has ensured that the rules and laws are observed and abided by.

Furthermore, the value of a common-law system is that the law can be well linked to situations that are not contemplated by the legislature. There are two disadvantages of the standard law system. The first demerit is that the judge must follow the precedent cases. If they fail to, it becomes impossible to predict the law. The second demerit is challenging to maintain the relevant decision with the hundreds of cases being decided daily. It is not unusual for several courts to be making decisions on cases on similar subjects simultaneously. Therefore, these courts will reach different conclusions about the law. For instance, the court in Wales might prohibit using the zone out in working places, while the court in North Ireland might allow it. The medical care providers between the two different zones face challenges that can only be curbed when the Scotland Supreme Court resolves the issue. This type of situation also happens between the federal courts of appeal. The alternative to common law is referred to as the civil law system.

In countries with civil law, the legislature gives out particular statutes that the court applies. Each judge who decides on a case looks to the statute instead of the previous cases for guidance. In ambiguous cases, every judge is free to reinterpret the statute to fit the facts of the specific case. This interpretation needs no figures on the previous decisions by other judges. Civil law judges try to ensure consistency in applying the law by considering the court’s previous decisions. For example, North Ireland retains some logical civil law steps before joining the United Kingdom.

Moreover, the precedent provides ideas on how the court will decide the cases. Thus it aids in the provision of decisions to the judges. It offers the decisions and the procedures and guidance to being observed. As a result, it has ensured fairness by providing consistent decisions within the law. At a lower level than the House of Lords in the hierarchy of courts, the Court of Appeal was compelled to decisions made by the House of Lords. However, the Court of Appeal attempted to challenge this authority in England and the latter case of Wales. Even so, the House of Lords rejected the trials. It conveys that the Court of Appeal, with other lower courts in the hierarchy, does not exercise any power related to the doctrine of precedent. The Court of Appeal is also obligated to its own decisions.

The System of the Common Law and Civil Law

The terms Common law system and Civil law system are used to differentiate between legal systems and approaches to law. Common law refers to all legal systems which have adopted the English legal system, which is historic. The United Kingdom and other countries that are Commonwealth embrace the standard law system. Civil law refers to the other jurisdictions espoused by the European continental law system. The distinction between the two systems is that the standard law system is case-centered thus judge-centered. On the other side, the Civil law system seems to obtain a codified body, therefore controlling the exercise of judicial circumspection. However, the European Court of Justice is not compelled by the doctrine’s operation.


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