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19. Civil Law

Civil LawIn the United States, the term civil law has two meanings. The first meaning refers to a legal system prevalent in Europe that is based on written codes. Civil law in this sense is contrasted with the common-law system used in England and most of the United States, which relies on prior case law to resolve disputes rather than written codes.

The second meaning of “civil law” means the laws related to disputes between individuals or businesses as opposed to public offenses which relate to the government and penal codes – that is, civil law as opposed to Criminal Law.