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For other uses, see Law (disambiguation) and Legal (disambiguation).
Lady Justice is the symbol of justice. Lady Justice is depicted as a goddess equipped with three symbols of justice: a sword symbolising the court's coercive power; scales representing an objective standard by which competing claims are weighed; and a blindfold indicating that justice is or should be meted out objectively, without fear or favor, regardless of power, money, wealth, or identity.
Law is a system of rules and guidelines which are enforced through social institutions to govern behavior. Laws are made by governments, specifically by their legislatures. The formation of laws themselves may be influenced by a constitution (written or unwritten) and the rights encoded therein. The law shapes politics, economics and society in countless ways and serves as a social mediator of relations between people.
A general distinction can be made between civil law jurisdictions (including Canon and Socialist law), in which the legislature or other central body codifies and consolidates their laws, and common law systems (including Islamic law), where judge-made binding precedents are accepted. In some countries, religion may inform the law. for example in jurisdictions that practice Islamic law, Jewish law or Canon law.
The adjudication of the law is generally divided into two main areas. Criminal law deals with conduct that is considered harmful to social order and in which the guilty party may be imprisoned or fined. Civil law (not to be confused with civil law jurisdictions above) deals with the resolution of lawsuits (disputes) between individuals or organizations. These resolutions seek to provide a legal remedy (often monetary damages) to the winning litigant.
Under civil law, the following specialties, among others, exist: Contract law regulates everything from buying a bus ticket to trading on derivatives...