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Ch 4: American Legal Systems: Help and Review

About This Chapter

The American Legal Systems chapter of this College-Level Introductory Business Law Help and Review course is the simplest way to master an understanding of American legal systems. This chapter uses simple and fun videos that are about five minutes long, plus lesson quizzes and a chapter exam to ensure students learn the essentials of American legal systems.

Who's it for?

Anyone who needs help learning or mastering college business material will benefit from taking this course. There is no faster or easier way to learn college business topics. Among those who would benefit are:

  • Students who have fallen behind in understanding the court system or working with the three levels
  • Students who struggle with learning disabilities or learning differences, including autism and ADHD
  • Students who prefer multiple ways of learning business content (visual or auditory)
  • Students who have missed class time and need to catch up
  • Students who need an efficient way to learn about American legal systems
  • Students who struggle to understand their teachers
  • Students who attend schools without extra business learning resources

How it works:

  • Find videos in our course that cover what you need to learn or review.
  • Press play and watch the video lesson.
  • Refer to the video transcripts to reinforce your learning.
  • Test your understanding of each lesson with short quizzes.
  • Verify you're ready by completing the American Legal Systems chapter exam.

Why it works:

  • Study Efficiently: Skip what you know, review what you don't.
  • Retain What You Learn: Engaging animations and real-life examples make topics easy to grasp.
  • Be Ready on Test Day: Use the American Legal Systems chapter exam to be prepared.
  • Get Extra Support: Ask our subject-matter experts any American legal systems question. They're here to help!
  • Study With Flexibility: Watch videos on any web-ready device.

Students will review:

This chapter helps students review the concepts in an American legal systems unit of a standard college business course. Topics covered include:

  • Public vs. private law
  • Criminal vs. civil law
  • Substantive law vs. procedural law
  • Three levels of the Federal Court System
  • Jurisdiction over property

30 Lessons in Chapter 4: American Legal Systems: Help and Review
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
Public Law vs. Private Law: Definitions and Differences

1. Public Law vs. Private Law: Definitions and Differences

The simple difference between public and private law is in those that each affects. Public law affects society as a whole, while private law affects individuals, families, businesses and small groups.

Criminal Law vs. Civil Law: Definitions and Differences

2. Criminal Law vs. Civil Law: Definitions and Differences

There are two main classifications of law. Criminal laws regulate crimes, or wrongs committed against the government. Civil laws regulate disputes between private parties. This lesson explains the main differences between criminal and civil law.

Substantive Law vs. Procedural Law: Definitions and Differences

3. Substantive Law vs. Procedural Law: Definitions and Differences

Substantive law and procedural law work together to ensure that in a criminal or civil case, the appropriate laws are applied and the proper procedures are followed to bring a case to trial. In this lesson, we'll discuss the differences between the two and how they relate to the legal system as a whole.

The Court System: Trial, Appellate & Supreme Court

4. The Court System: Trial, Appellate & Supreme Court

There are three separate levels of courts in our legal system, each serving a different function. Trial courts settle disputes as the first court of instance, appellate courts review cases moved up from trial courts and supreme courts hear cases of national importance or those appealed in the court of appeals.

The 3 Levels of the Federal Court System: Structure and Organization

5. The 3 Levels of the Federal Court System: Structure and Organization

The federal court system has three main levels: U.S. District Court, U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and the U.S. Supreme Court. Each level of court serves a different legal function for both civil and criminal cases.

Overview of the US Supreme Court

6. Overview of the US Supreme Court

The U.S. Supreme Court justices reside over cases involving original jurisdiction under certain circumstances and appellate jurisdiction when a decision from a lower court involving constitutional law is at issue. Appellate cases require a writ of certiorari requesting permission to address this court.

State Court System: Structure & Overview

7. State Court System: Structure & Overview

There is no uniform structure to the State Court System. Each state has its own system but most states operate similarly to the Federal Court System in that there are several levels of courts including trial courts, intermediate appellate courts and supreme courts.

Long Arm Statute: Definition & Example

8. Long Arm Statute: Definition & Example

Long-arm statute refers to the jurisdiction a court has over out-of-state defendant corporations. International Shoe v. State of Washington was a landmark case that set precedent for establishing the right for government to use the long-arm statute to bring an action against a defendant corporation.

Court Functions: Original and Appellate Jurisdiction

9. Court Functions: Original and Appellate Jurisdiction

Courts exercise two types of jurisdiction over cases: original jurisdiction and appellate jurisdiction for cases previously heard in a lower court. Judges have the option, when hearing an appeals case, to reverse or remand a decision based on a violation of law like abuse of discretion.

Subject Matter Jurisdiction: Federal, State and Concurrent

10. Subject Matter Jurisdiction: Federal, State and Concurrent

One of the ways a court determines whether a case will be heard is based on subject matter jurisdiction. We will explore several factors that determine subject matter jurisdiction in state and federal courts, including concurrent subject matter jurisdiction.

Jurisdiction over Property: Definition & Types

11. Jurisdiction over Property: Definition & Types

In rem and quasi in rem jurisdiction give a court power over property. The court's power over the property can be used as leverage or as a means of satisfying a civil action against a defendant. The conditions that are required determine the court's ability to exercise both types of jurisdiction of property.

What is the Jurisdiction of the Supreme Court?

12. What is the Jurisdiction of the Supreme Court?

The U.S. Supreme Court exercises a right to preside over specific cases and is considered the court of original jurisdiction based on subject-matter jurisdiction. It is considered an appellate court for cases involving constitutional law under certain circumstances.

How Venue is Determined for a Court Case

13. How Venue is Determined for a Court Case

Venue is the location where a civil or criminal case is decided. The venue is decided similarly in civil and criminal trials. However, the venue is decided differently in state and federal courts.

Civil Suits: Definition & Types

14. Civil Suits: Definition & Types

In this lesson, we will define civil suits and explore how they are different from criminal suits. We will also discuss different types of civil suits. In addition, there will be a short quiz at the end of the lesson.

Judicial Activism: Definition, Cases, Pros & Cons

15. Judicial Activism: Definition, Cases, Pros & Cons

After you finish this lesson, you will understand what constitutes judicial activism. Moreover, you will review a key case involving judicial activism. Finally, you will examine the pros and cons of judicial activism.

What Is Common Law? - Definition & Examples

16. What Is Common Law? - Definition & Examples

After you complete this lesson, you will understand what constitutes common law. Moreover, you will learn the doctrine of stare decisis and review an example where common law is utilized.

Basic Legal Terminology: Definitions & Glossary

17. Basic Legal Terminology: Definitions & Glossary

When dealing with legal matters or starting an education in law, there are basic terms that can help you understand courtroom and legal documents. Read on to find out more.

Criminal Threat: Definition, Levels & Charges

18. Criminal Threat: Definition, Levels & Charges

This lesson will provide the definition for criminal threat. The different levels of criminal threat and the charges associated with them will also be covered. In addition, examples will be provided to promote understanding.

Information Disclosure Statement & Patents

19. Information Disclosure Statement & Patents

In this lesson, we will explain information disclosure statements and patents and how they are used to protect ideas or inventions. At the end, you should have a good understanding of these legal instruments.

Imminent Danger: Legal Definition & Examples

20. Imminent Danger: Legal Definition & Examples

Imminent danger is a legal term that is frequently used in law enforcement and judicial matters. This lesson will provide the legal definition for imminent danger, discuss imminent danger, and the right to use force.

Homeland Security Advisory System: Colors & History

21. Homeland Security Advisory System: Colors & History

In this lesson, we will review the workings and history of the Department of Homeland Security's former Homeland Security Advisory System. This was a way of communicating potential terrorist threats to government agencies and the public.

Confidential Information: Legal Definition & Types

22. Confidential Information: Legal Definition & Types

In this lesson, discover the meaning of confidential information. Learn the different types of confidential information and the importance of a confidentiality form. Experience examples of bad confidentiality scenarios, along with examples of the correct way to protect confidential forms.

Confidential Business Information: Definition & Laws

23. Confidential Business Information: Definition & Laws

Have you ever wanted to know the process for keeping business information confidential? This lesson covers all you need to know about what confidential business information is and what laws keep that information from being disclosed.

What is the Difference Between a Misdemeanor & a Felony?

24. What is the Difference Between a Misdemeanor & a Felony?

What does calling someone a ~'felon~' mean? Are there only certain offenses that earn the title? This lesson will explore the differences between misdemeanor and felony level offenses, including degrees of severity and sentencing limits.

What is Retributive Justice? - Definition & Examples

25. What is Retributive Justice? - Definition & Examples

Retributive justice is a criminal justice theory that has historical roots, with references to it that go far back into ancient times. In this lesson, we'll learn the meaning of retribution with a definition and examples.

Retributive Justice vs. Restorative Justice

26. Retributive Justice vs. Restorative Justice

Retributive justice is a perspective that focuses on punishment for offenders, while restorative justice focuses on the relationship between the offender and the victim. In this lesson, we will explore their differences and how both play a part in our judicial system.

What is Punitive Justice? - Definition & Examples

27. What is Punitive Justice? - Definition & Examples

Punishment has been a central focus of the United States criminal justice system since its inception.This lesson will look at punitive justice by distinguishing it from restorative justice and look at examples of each to add clarification.

What Does Distinguish Mean in Law?

28. What Does Distinguish Mean in Law?

This lesson will define the term ''distinguish'' as it pertains to the legal world. Upon completion, the reader should have a firm grasp of this term, along with how it applies to the legal world specifically.

Legalese: Definition & Examples

29. Legalese: Definition & Examples

In this lesson, we will learn the meaning of legalese. We'll examine different legalese terms and phrases as well as What they look like in the context of a legal document.

The Federal Arbitration Act (FAA)

30. The Federal Arbitration Act (FAA)

In this lesson, you will learn about the Federal Arbitration Act— its provisions, enforcement, and how it interacts with state laws and international conventions.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
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