Public law refers to the relationship between individuals and the government. Public law is important because of the unequal relationship between the government and the public. The government is the only body that can make decisions on the rights of individuals and they must act within the law. A citizen can ask for judicial review if they are unhappy with a decision of an authoritative body. These areas of law are slightly different.
Public law is that part of law which governs relationships between individuals and the government , and those relationships between individuals which are of direct concern to society. In public law, mandatory rules prevail. Laws concerning relationships between individuals belong to private law. The relationships public law governs are asymmetric and unequal — government bodies central or local can make decisions about the rights of individuals. However, as a consequence of the rule of law doctrine, authorities may only act within the law secundum et intra legem. The government must obey the law.
To save this word, you'll need to log in. Log In Definition of public law 1 : a legislative enactment affecting the public at large 2 : a branch of law concerned with regulating the relations of individuals with the government and the organization and conduct of the government itself — compare private law Examples of public law in a Sentence Recent Examples on the Web Earlier this month, Akron Law became the first public law school in Ohio to accept GRE scores from applicants, in additional to the traditional LSAT. Smith a PhD in in the field of public law and government.
Jowitt's Dictionary of English Law describes public law as having several branches, as follows:. Public law can be distinguished from private law , which regulates the private conduct between individuals, without direct involvement of the government. Private law and public law can overlap. For example, an unsolicited punch in the nose would constitute a crime for which the government would prosecute under criminal law but for which there would also be a private legal action possible by the injured party under tort law, which is private law although governments can be held responsible under tort law.