Laws and Our Society

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6.58 MB   |   25 pages

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In the Criminal Justice System, the people were represented by two separate yet equally important groups: the ___________, who investigated crime, and the ______________________________, who prosecuted the offenders. These are their stories…
Watching: Law and Order
On a piece of paper:
Summarize the episode. (Identify the crime—the law being broken, the offender, the prosecutors, and the penalty)
Evaluate: Do you think the offender has been properly prosecuted? If not, what would do justice?
Vocabulary: Write down any terms that you are unfamiliar with during the show.

16.1 Why We Have Laws

16.2 Where Our Laws Come From
A legal code is a written collection of laws gathered over time and often organized by subject.
Legal codes have existed in many cultures.
American legal codes mainly show the influence of English law with some elements of French and Spanish law.
Constitutions are one form of legal code. They include the basic rules for how governments are run.

Laws change over time.
Some change because people’s values change.
Other disappears because they are out of date
or hard to understandable by the majority of the people.
16.3 Kinds of Law
Laws and our Society

Please download the Preview File for the PPT corresponding worksheet.

PPT Slide Content:

There are two major kinds of law – criminal law and civil law.
A crime is any behavior that is illegal because it harms people or society.
Criminal law is the group of laws that tells which acts are crimes, how accused people should be tried, and how crimes should be punished.
Types of Crime: Misdemeanor
A crime for which the penalty is a jail sentence of not more than one year, a fine, or a combination of both.
Example: littering or driving without a license, is punishable with a fine or a short jail sentence.

Types of Crime: Felony
A crime for which the penalty is imprisonment for more than one year, a fine, or a combination of both.
Example: Murder or kidnapping.


Congress decides what acts are crimes throughout the nation.
States and local governments can pass criminal laws that reflect state and local beliefs and needs.
Gambling may be illegal in one state but legal in another.
Drunk driving may be a felony in one state but a misdemeanor in another.

Civil law helps settle disagreements between people.
In civil suits, one citizen must bring suit against another. The government will not automatically get involved, as it does with crimes.

Situation: A drunk driver who has no insurance severely injures someone.
criminal law punishes a drunk driver involved in an accident;
civil law forces the driver to pay the medical expenses of persons injured in the accident.
Evaluate: What is one law that you think should be changed? Explain why.
Total Pages
25
Answer Key
N/A
Teaching Duration
N/A

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Laws and Our Society
Laws and Our Society
Laws and Our Society
Laws and Our Society
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