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Roles and Functions of Law Essay

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Everything that we do in life has some sort of law attached to it and we as citizens have a role. For most average citizen, every day is just like any other day. We tackle our day with the things we need to do like go to work or doing our daily errands. These daily tasks are performed without the law ever crossing our minds. Although we abide by the rules and laws, we sometimes forget that we are doing it. For example, driving to the store seems like a simple task but it actually consists of several laws that we must follow. First, we must obey traffic laws and once we are in the store, there are laws in place to keep the shopping experience safe. Even the swipe of a credit card has several laws attached to it. The roles and functions of law in business and society are made to make our lives safer and fair. Society is to follow a set of rules and conduct that is arranged by a controlling authority that has permissible binding force. The main objective for any law is the intention of protecting citizens. It is a difficult task to write up laws that will cover very important issues.

There are laws that draw the fine lines when it pertains to peacekeeping, economic growth, social justice, personal freedom, etc. Laws are also devised to maintain the operations of a society to be successful and function proficiently. Since law is a broad area of our governmental system, it can be broken down to several classifications to better understand each of them. Perhaps the most important one is Criminal and Civil Law. Criminal Laws are the laws that cover criminal activities such as robbery, murder, kidnapping etc. This is usually between an individual or a group of individuals against society. Civil Law is mort focused on two private parties. The most common type of civil law would be divorces and custody battles. These laws are our underlying written law to understand what is considered to be right and what is considered to be wrong. Substantive and procedural law is another classification that helps our society function properly. A substantive law is used to control and produce people’s rights and responsibilities. On the other hand, procedural laws ensure that substantive laws are fair.

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To better understand between the two, a substantive law would define a drunk driver crashing his/her car and killing a passenger on board is a criminal offense (involuntarily manslaughter) and procedural law defines how the drunk driver can be brought into litigation. Another law classification is statutory and common law. Statutory is at the federal level and common is at the state level. Statutory law examples would be taxes and federal minimum wage. Although statutory laws can be passes at the state level, it has to go through the state’s legislature and ultimately approved or denied by the state governor. The laws that were previously mentioned play and imperative role and function in our society. In essence, it provides the golden rules that all citizens can look upon for almost every aspect of society.

Laws are the centerpiece that holds a society to be functional. It creates stability and for our country and for our fellow citizens. It would be total chaos and uproar without a written rule of conduct. There seems to be a law attached to almost just about anything. For example, at my current employment, there are rules, regulation, and laws in order to have a proficient running business. It is not only there for employee protection, but to also ensure customers are covered as well. The access of information I have at my disposal at my employer deals with Personal Identifiable Information (PII). These PII is very sensitive and can truly damage someone’s life. My company goes through several lectures and meetings throughout the year to ensure that employees are keeping these information confidential and what the consequences are if they were to go into the wrong hands. It is important to have laws intact. Without them, a business would sure to crumble and our society would go into a state of frenzy.


Melvin, S.P. (2011). The legal environment of business: A managerial approach: Theory to practice. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill/Irwin.

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