Understanding the 9 Types of Laws and Their Examples with the 5 Sources of Laws


 Laws govern our society and help maintain order. They come in various forms and can be derived from different sources. Understanding the different types of laws and where they come from is crucial in understanding how to navigate the legal landscape. In this article, we’ll dive into the 9 types of laws and their examples along with the 5 sources of laws.

Criminal Law

Criminal law is the type of law that deals with criminal offenses. It covers anything from theft to murder. Criminal law has several sources, including common law, statutory law, and regulatory law. Examples of criminal law include drunk driving, assault, and embezzlement.

Civil Law

Civil law deals with legal disputes between parties and can cover a broad range of issues, including property disputes, breach of contract, and personal injury. In civil law, the party that brings the lawsuit (plaintiff) seeks financial compensation or specific actions to be taken. Examples of civil law include divorce, breach of contract, and medical malpractice.

Family Law

Family law deals with matters relating to family relationships, such as marriage, divorce, child custody, and adoption. Family law is derived from a mix of common law and statutory law. Examples of family law include prenuptial agreements, child custody cases, and divorce settlements.

Constitutional Law

Constitutional law refers to laws related to the constitution and how it affects the government and its citizens. Constitutional law is derived from the U.S. Constitution and state constitutions. Examples of constitutional law include the right to free speech, the right to bear arms, and abortion laws.

Administrative Law

Administrative law handles the relationship between government and citizens. It deals with the rules and regulations set by agencies and departments of the government. Administrative law is derived from executive orders, agency rules and regulations, and administrative decisions. Examples of administrative law include zoning laws, environmental regulations, and tax codes.

International Law

International law governs the relationships between nations. It consists of rules and regulations on trade, diplomacy, and human rights that are agreed upon by multiple nations. International law is derived from treaties, customary law, and international court decisions. Examples of international law include trade agreements, the Geneva Conventions, and the United Nations Charter.

Labor Law

Labor law deals with the relationship between employers and employees and covers issues such as wages, working conditions, and labor unions. Labor law comes from a mix of statutory law, administrative law, and case law. Examples of labor law include minimum wage laws, workers’ compensation, and union contracts.

Property Law

Property law covers issues concerning ownership, property rights, and the use of real estate. It is derived from a mix of common law and statutory law. Examples of property law include land use regulations, zoning laws, and easements.

Tort Law

Tort law deals with civil wrongs where one party has caused harm to another. It covers issues such as negligence, intentional harm, and product liability. Tort law is derived from a mix of case law and common law. Examples of tort law include car accidents, medical malpractice, and defamation.

Sources of Laws:

Common Law

Common law refers to law created by judges through judicial decisions. It is often used in cases where there is no specific statute or constitutional law that directly applies.

Statutory Law

Statutory law is written law created by legislative bodies at the local, state, and federal levels. It can cover a broad range of issues and is often used to change or clarify existing laws.

Case Law

Case law is law established by court decisions and can be either common law or statutory law. It is often used to interpret laws that are unclear or to apply legal principles to new situations.

Administrative Law

Administrative law is the body of law that governs the activities of administrative agencies. It includes rules, regulations, and decisions made by agencies and is often used to enforce rules and regulations in areas such as environmental policy, health care, and labor practices.

Constitutional Law

Constitutional law refers to laws related to the U.S. Constitution and state constitutions. It is often used to determine whether laws and government action are consistent with the principles laid out in those documents.


Laws are a vital component of society, and understanding the different types of laws and their sources is crucial in navigating legal matters. From criminal law to tort law, each type has its source and unique characteristics. The five sources of law, including common law and constitutional law, shape the legal landscape. By understanding the different types of laws and their sources, we can better comprehend the legal system and make informed decisions.


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