Types of Law

Posted on Thursday, June 21, 2012 by Farida Palupi

A glance at the history of law suggests that rules or enactments or rather the law of land was made by the monarchs or the local chief in the interest of the public. In ancient Rome for a certain period of time, it was also framed by the representatives of the people. In the modern era, especially after the industrial revolution, Parliaments and other legislative bodies have taken up the procedure of framing different types of law.

The field of law is so enormous that one specific law degree cannot cover its entire scope. Hence, based upon the classification of law, different law careers have also evolved. Lawyers and attorneys represent people in front of the court of law. Solicitors frame the important legal documents and Judges dispense appropriate justice. In addition to that the paralegals assist all the people working in the filed of law. These professionals, however, specialize and excel in one specific domain of law. The domain is basically a classification or a segment of a set of laws. Corporate law for example is a set of laws that governs business organizations and their workings.

Major Branches of Law

The following are some important classifications of laws and enactments.

Criminal Law: Criminal law is often governed by a penal code and deals with hardcore crime cases. In such enactments there is genuine involvement of police department and law enforcers. On the whole studying such a type of law is not at all a pleasant task as it deals with anything from theft to murder. Proceedings of such enactments is often prolonged and in certain cases, dangerous. Lawyers and attorneys, who deal with such laws and cases related thereof, are often termed as criminal lawyers.
Corporate Law: The steep rise in business and commerce all around the world has led to the development of what is known as a 'corporate world'. The corporate world compromises of all companies and business organizations that operate for profit. Due to their enormous financial capabilities, these organizations are to be governed by a set of laws which are at largely referred to as corporate law.
Consumer Rights: Consumerism is an important feature of modern era, and so is the phenomenon of their rights. In the last fifty years, the popularization of consumer goods has also led to the development of consumer rights and their protection. Consumer laws protect these rights of consumers and consumer right lawyers fight cases for the aggrieved consumers.
Labor and Employment Laws: The labor and employment laws are basically framed to protect employees from the unlawful practices and decisions of the authorities of organization where they work. Such laws started to coming into prominence after the industrial revolution. Labor and employment laws are closely related to both criminal as well as corporate laws.
Environmental Laws: In the 20th century, pollution, concern about the environment and global warming has led to genuine environmental concerns which has led to passing of some important environment protection laws that are imposed on all citizens and also business organizations.

Though, these types are considered to be the prominent ones, there are some other laws that are equally necessary such as banking and insurance laws and even marine laws. Another strict feature of laws is the civil rights procedures that forms the basis of a democratic nation. It is important that we obey and honors all these laws and also use them to the best ethical benefit. 

Pepper Spray Laws

Posted on Sunday, June 10, 2012 by Farida Palupi

Pepper spray is a self defense, 'easy to handle' device which is made up of an active ingredient called OC (Oleoresin Capsicum) and other inert ingredients. When you use the spray, its effects last for about 20 to 90 minutes, giving you plenty of time to escape the frightening situation.

How Does a Pepper Spray Work

The effect of pepper spray can be noticed instantly. As soon as the OC comes in contact with the mucous membranes (eyes, nose, throat, and lungs), it immediately causes dilation of the eye capillaries which in turn results in temporary blindness. It also causes inflammation of the breathing tube tissues leading to difficulty in breathing. However, the victim can breathe. Thus the short-term effects of these sprays are quite effective. You can choose the best pepper spray from various models available in the market, such as spray pens, spray lipsticks, etc.

Self Defense with Pepper Spray

Laws on pepper spray vary from state to state. In Canada, pepper spray, tear gas and mace are forbidden. The spray is classified as 'arms' under the laws of Hong Kong. Before you buy a pepper spray, you should consult your local law enforcement agency to find out the specific laws applicable to your area. Dog and bear pepper sprays are considered legal in all U.S. states. In most states, the spray is legal against bears but using mace and tear gas is not legal. (Mace is a brand name associated with pepper spray products. Mace is similar to tear gas.)

Pepper Spray Laws by State

The information provided below is by no means a legal advice. Consult a local agency to know the details about the legal use of pepper spray if you wish to use it for self defense.

Alaska: According to the section 11.61.200, any explosive, incendiary or noxious gas is listed under 'prohibited weapon' and as the spray is considered a noxious gas, it is illegal. Also, a person is said to commit the crime of misconduct involving weapons in the third degree, if the person manufactures, possesses, transports, sells, or transfers a prohibited weapon.

Arkansas: According to the section 5-73-124, concerning tear gas and pepper spray, carrying and using the spray 'only for self defense' is lawful but the capacity of the cartridge or container should not exceed 150 cubic centimeters.

District of Columbia: Despite the provisions of § 7-2501.01(7)(C), a person 18 years of age or older may possess and use a self-defense pepper spray but only if it is propelled from an aerosol container, labeled with or accompanied by clearly written instructions as to its use, and dated to indicate its anticipated useful life.

Florida: According to section 790.001(3)(b), self-defense chemical spray should be carried solely for self-defense and the device should be compact in size and should not contain more than two ounces of chemical. (in California 'more than 2.5 ounces net weight of aerosol spray' is considered illegal).

Hawaii: According to §134-1 definitions, no person is allowed to use pepper spray for self defense unless and until the person has procured from the chief of police of the county of the person's place of business, a permit to acquire the ownership of a pepper spray (which is referred to as fire-arm device).

Massachusetts: Chapter 140: Section 129B which deals with firearm identification cards, conditions and restrictions states that pepper spray (except animal repellents) can only be sold by licensed firearms dealers within the state only. A firearm identification card shall be valid for the purpose of purchasing and possessing the spray.

Michigan: Section 750.224d about self-defense spray device states that self defense spray is a device which carries and ejects or emits either a solution containing not more than 2% oleoresin capsicum or not more than 35 grams of any combination of ortho chloro benzamalo-nitrile and inert ingredients.

There are innumerable clauses and conditions regarding use of a pepper spray. These were just a few examples. The laws also regulate the manufacturing process, transportation and selling process of these sprays. There are restrictions regarding the ingredients of the spray, size of the content, label printing, user's age, etc. But it can be concluded that pepper spray is legal with restrictions in all the states. Penalties for the misuse of the spray may vary from $100 to $1000, depending upon the laws of the state.

Most of the states have made it compulsory for the manufacturers to print the name of the manufacturer and a serial number applied by him along with the expiry date on the label and insert printed instructions for use which should include directions for use, first aid information, safety and storage information, and explanation of the legal consequences of improper use of the spray container or the product. Many states like California, New York have made it compulsory for the manufacturers to print a label on every pepper spray stating: "WARNING: The use of this substance or device for any purpose other than self defense is a crime under the law. The contents are dangerous-use with care."

Whether you can buy paper spray on-line or not is also determined by the state governments. If you are confused about where to buy the spray, you should first check the rules and regulations of your state. In New York, no more than two sprays can be sold at any one time to a single purchaser.

Police also uses specially manufactured sprays for law enforcement. Law enforcement pepper spray is very beneficial for the police as it can be used as a close-quarter personal defense weapon. In Hungary, the spray is allowed for law enforcement only.

A pepper spray immediately incapacitates an assailant. But along with pepper spray laws, you have to keep it in mind that a person harassing you with a lethal weapon can injure you mortally in less time than it takes you to draw and aim the spray. Moreover, there is always a chance that an assailant may be able to take your canister away from you and use it against you. It is possible that the spray can be ineffective in terms of range in wind and rain and the spray could backfire at you in wind. Therefore, you should use the spray very cautiously.