Modern Law in Australia Essay

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Domitus Ulpian said, “Justice is the constant and perpetual will to allot to every man his due.” Justice is what allows a society to operate and function. It is upheld and enforced by a system of rules known simply as the law which are officially recognised and imposed on states to govern behavior. Some form of law has always existed in human history whether it be in an unwritten customary form or in a written format like a constitution (Milgate P, 2013). The law and legal system around the world has developed throughout history to the point that there are many different categories and sub categories of law. In modern day Australia, the legal system has been modelled after the English system. This is a combination of statute and common …show more content…

Modern day common law is adjudicated similarly with it being judged according to available statutes or acts enacted by legislative bodies and decisions made in previous cases after all evidence and facts are attained. The decisions of a court/judge are binding only in a particular jurisdiction (area of control or influence), and even within jurisdiction, some courts have more power than others. Due to this before a decision is made it must be accepted by higher courts (Statute and Common Law, 2014).

When a decision is made for a new dispute, in a common law system, the judgement is passed as a precedent. A precedent is a verdict made by legal authorities for a principle or rule that provides guidance for any future cases having similar issues. Precedents are supported by the doctrine of precedent also known as ‘stare decisis’. ‘Stare decisis’ is a Latin term translating to ‘the decision stands’. This doctrine is a legal principle that judges are obliged to follow and respect (Milgate P, 2013). This implies, that any future cases with similar circumstances should have the same verdict (punishment/decision etc.) as the precedent. Precedents are followed to ensure fair treatment and so that law is developed in a consistent manner providing older cases with the authority and structure for current judges to make their decisions. When there is no precedent a decision is met through existing statute laws

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