Public Law vs. Private Law: Definitions and Differences


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Joe is suing the car repair shop because his muffler fell off within minutes of having it installed. Prior to payment, he signed a viable document with the repair shop which gave him a 6 month guarantee, but the shop claims they never managed to process the paperwork for the contract. Why would this be a matter of contract law?

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1. Jimmy is an Asian-American. He wanted to attend a local public college but his application was rejected and he suspects it was because of his ethnic origin. He filed suit against the college. Why is constitutional law applied in such a case?

2. How does private law differ from public law?

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About This Quiz & Worksheet

There are many parts to public law and private law and these resources will help test your knowledge of them. You will be quizzed on specific types of public and private law.

Quiz & Worksheet Goals

Use these assessment tools to assess your knowledge of the following law categories:

  • Criminal
  • Private
  • Public
  • Contract
  • Constitutional

Skills Practiced

This worksheet and quiz let you practice the following skills:

  • Reading comprehension - ensure that you can draw the most important information about public law and private law from the related lesson
  • Distinguishing differences - explore the differences between private law and public law
  • Knowledge application - use your knowledge to answer questions about the different types of laws

Additional Learning

To learn more about public and private law, review the lesson titled Public Law vs. Private Law: Definitions and Differences. This lesson has the following objectives:

  • Analyze specific examples of cases based on public law and private law, such as Brown v. Board of Education and Carvajal v. Hillstone Restaurant Group, Inc.
  • Discuss different public law categories, like administrative law and international law
  • Explore the different types of private law, such as tort law and property law