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Primary And Secondary Sources Of Law

Primary and Secondary Sources of Law

Primary and Secondary Sources of Law


In law there are two sources through which research can be conducted and evidence can be collected. The sources are divided into primary and secondary sources of law. The primary sources of law are further divided into two categories: 1) is legislation for example rules, statutes, orders-in-council and regulations, and 2) is the law cases for example decisions announced by courts and tribunals on different cases registered. On the other hand secondary sources are the resources used in the background to find evidence or conduct research work. There are several kinds of secondary resources for example the legal text books, journals, dictionaries, encyclopedias and summaries of previous cases. Secondary sources are used as a source of reference along with the primary sources but unlike primary resource, a secondary resource cannot affect the legal right. Secondary Resources unlike primary resources a source of starting the legal research for any case and it assists the legal researchers. Primary resource is the first hand resource for the legal researcher and is not outdated like secondary legal resource. The following assignment will further explain the differences between the primary and the legal sources of law; and will also explain with example of documents that either it belongs to the primary source of law or secondary source of law.


Primary resources are the source for the local bodies to make the laws but a law cannot be made by using a secondary resource. It is also possible that primary resource can have an effect on the legal right of a citizen but a secondary source does not have any effect on any legal right. The legal researchers can use a variety of secondary resources like legal words & phrases, legal dictionary, annotated law reports, legal periodicals, legal treaties, restatements, legal directories and etc. On the other hand primary sources include: personal correspondence and diaries, works of art and literature, audio and video recordings, photographs and posters, laws and legislative hearings and etc.

A secondary resource lacks the familiarity to the primary resource and thus it is the material that is collected after an event has happened but a primary source of law collects data before an event happens. Primary source of law is simply collection of direct evidence or first-hand information related to a topic or an investigation whereas in a secondary source of law information is gathered from the previously collected facts and figures. This the reason why primary source of law is more reliable as compared to the secondary source of law.

Primary source of law represents information from the witnesses or the bearers of the event and secondary source of law relies on the event described by the people in the past. Primary sources of law are through which rules and regulations or constitutions are designed in a country. The makers of the constitution, rules and regulations uses secondary source to bring improvement in the law made by the help of the primary ...

Law Assignment: District School Issues In Legal Framework

Law Assignment: District School Issues in Legal Framework

Law Assignment: District School Issues in Legal Framework

Federal District Court Location

I live in the Southern District of Texas and the federal district court is located downtown.

Federal Circuit Court Of Appeals Location

The federal circuit court of appeals for the Southern District of Texas is located in Fifth Circuit, which is in New Orleans i.e. U.S. COURT OF APPEALS, FIFTH CIRCUIT (New Orleans, LA).

Federal and State Laws Conflict; Federal Law Supersedes State Law

According to the Supremacy clause (Article VI, Clause 2) of U.S. Constitution, federal law is the ‘supreme law of the land’, that is, as long as the federal law is valid (constitutional), state law is inferior to it ( However, the Constitution has set up a split jurisdiction between state and federal sovereignty, which emphasis on Supremacy clause. This states that federal law is not always responsible for certain areas, i.e. state courts are solely reserved in certain areas of the states to regulate and any federal law in that area is unconstitutional. For example, education curriculum is establish by the states, where, the federal law can offer grants if any other criteria is met, but the final decision about the curriculum of schools is up to the states. So, in this way certain legal areas are reserved as the authority of state courts and education curriculum is one of them. However, Constitution cannot be violated by any state law, like a state cannot mandate any religion teachings in their schools, as it would clearly violate the first amendment to the constitution. Thus, states are allowed to rule but within certain areas and with some limitations as well. In case, the state law violates U.S. constitution, the federal law then supersedes state law. Further, the federal law and U.S. constitution can supersede state law when regulating the same activity (Vaillancourt & Rossen, 2012). This can be represented by a good example of Jim Crow laws in the 60’s or laws that called for segregation of schools. These were the general state laws which then overturned by the Supreme Court. Thus, the idea of federal law supremacy and preemption refers to the concept that laws of state and local courts should not conflict with federal laws, since federal law is considered as the supreme law that can always supersedes the local or state law.

Evolution of Legal System since the Last 20 Years and Its Impact

Since the last 20 years, the legal system has evolved significantly and has seen major changes that have all been aimed at taking the nation at higher notch. In the U.S., several laws have been made by legislative bodies, where, the Constitution of United States provides authority to enact federal laws in certain areas, however, it does not delegate Congress all the power and reserved some for the states. Therefore, several laws have proposed by both, federal as well as state courts during last 20 years and most of them have significantly impacted on legal framework ...

World’s 5 Major Legal Systems

World’s 5 Major Legal Systems

World’s 5 Major Legal Systems


Every society contains a combination of people following the right or wrong path. Therefore, it is important to ensure that individuals who are found guilty of any wrongdoings are punished for their actions. To achieve this aim, all the societies form various bodies that in turn propose, finalize and enforce a set of legal framework for the accountability of the guilty. However, these legal frameworks are meant to achieve goals far more important in the longer run. These include warning the individuals who might attempt to commit any crime, establishing accountability of all the guilty without any bias, establishing justice and ultimately maintaining the peace in the society. Therefore, in order to achieve these goals, many different regions on the planet follow different Legal Systems.


There are many different Legal Systems adapted and practiced in different regions of the world. However, the five largest and most practiced Legal Systems of the world include civil, common, customary, Muslim, and Talmudic. Each of these legal systems has its own significance however all these are meant to prevail peace and justice in the society.


All these legal systems were originated as result of special circumstances and therefore each has a strong reflection of those circumstances.


The civil legal had its roots vested way back as it is a combination of 6th century’s Justinian law and the classical Roman law. The system went through several stages of development under the impact of the Cannon legal system and laws in late middle ages. The doctrines of Justinian Code provided the civil legal system with sophisticated frameworks for contracts, wills, family law, and a constitutional system for monarchy (David, 1978). Whereas the different perceptions of Roman law in different countries, is also reflected in the civil legal system. The system in its period of birth also took its inspiration for the Codification practiced in ancient Babylon practiced in BC, 18th century.


Influenced majorly by the Anglo-Saxon law, the Common legal System was originated in England. The system also possesses light shades of the England’s Norman Conquest that introduced concepts form the Norman law which in turn was originated from Salic law (David, 1978). Initially inherited by Commonwealth Nations with every former British Empire colony later adopting it with the exception of Malta.

Customary Law

It is also known as "unwritten law," "primitive law," "folk law," and "indigenous law." There exists no such single history of the laws of customary legal systems such as that known to be found in English common law, Roman civil law, Napoleonic Civil Code or Islamic law. However, what is known is that the earliest systems and frameworks of law in history of human societies were customary. Usually, these systems were developed in small hunter-gatherer communities.

Islamic Law

Also known as “Sharia”, the Islamic legal system was basically derived from the sacred book of Islam which is Quran, word of God. The Sharia also extracts it’s clause from the Prophet Muhammad's interpretations and ...