United States Legal System Three Branches of Government

Report
United States
Legal System
Three Branches of Government
Multiple Sovereignties
United States Legal System
Sources of Law-Federal and State
Constitution
United States Legal System
Constitution
Judicial
United States Legal System
Constitution
Legislative
United States Legal System
Constitution
Executive
Executive
United States Legal System
Constitution
Judicial
Case Law
United States Legal System
Constitution
Legislative
Statutes
Public Laws
Public
U.S.C.
Laws
Statutes
Indiana Code
Acts
United States Legal System
Constitution
Executive
Rules and Regulations
Proclamations
Administrative Decisions
Executive Orders
Primary and
Secondary Authority
Primary Authority
• Primary authority is the law itself.
– Constitutions
– Statutes
– Administrative regulations issued pursuant to
enabling legislation
– Case law
Secondary Authority
• Secondary Authority is all legal materials
that are not primary authority or finding
aids. Secondary authority includes
-encyclopedias
-law reviews
-treatises
-ALR
• Secondary authority is never binding on a
court.
Court System
Final Appellate Court
Law
Intermediate
Appellate Court
Fact & Law
Trial Court
Path of a Court Case
• Trial Court
– complaint, indictment, information
– pre-trial activities
– trial
– decision
• Intermediate Appellate Court
– Briefs
– Argument
– Decision
Path of a Court Case
• Highest Court
Briefs
Arguments
Decision
Mandatory vs.
Persuasive Authority
MANDATORY
• Authority that a court MUST follow
• Typically, a higher court in the jurisdiction.
Example:
– All IN trial courts must follow the IN Supreme Court
and the IN Court of Appeals
– IN Court of Appeals must follow IN Supreme Court
• On U.S. Constitutional matters only, even
state courts must follow US Supreme Court
US Supreme
Court
Regarding
Constitutional
Matters
Indiana
Supreme
Court
Indiana
Court of
Appeals
Indiana
Trial
Court
Mandatory
Kentucky
Supreme
Court
Kentucky
Court of
Appeals
Kentucky
District
Court
PERSUASIVE
• Authority which carries some
weight but is not binding or
mandatory.
• Can be primary or secondary
authority.
– Based on opinion of sister court (primarypersuasive) OR
– Legal scholar (secondary- persuasive)
US Supreme
Court
Persuasive
US Court of
Appeals
Kentucky
Supreme
Court
Kentucky
Court of
Appeals
Kentucky
Trial Courts
Indiana
Supreme
Court
Indiana
Court of
Appeals
Indiana
Trial Court
Review
• The Constitution is the supreme law of its
jurisdiction and 51 major jurisdictions in the U.S.
• Three branches of government in each
jurisdiction - Executive, Legislative, and Judicial.
Each branch produces legal materials.
• Primary Authority and Secondary Authority
• The court systems of the United States and of
each of the states.
• Mandatory and persuasive authority

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