Starting with law: An overview of the law
Starting with law: An overview of the law

Start this free course now. Just create an account and sign in. Enrol and complete the course for a free statement of participation or digital badge if available.

Free course

Starting with law: An overview of the law

Y166 Glossary

Glossary for Y166 Starting with law

Browse the glossary using this index

Special | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z | ALL

Page: (Previous)   1  2  3  (Next)





This is the governing body of a state. It is normally formed by the political party with a majority in Parliament.



This is a term for judges.


Law of succession

This is the branch of law that outlines rules on inheritance.

Law of tort

This term is used to refer to a civil wrong. There are many types of tort, including negligence, nuisance, trespass and defamation. If the wrong is proved then the injured party may be able to claim compensation from the person committing the wrong.

Legal aid

This is a government-funded scheme that provides legal advice, representation and help for people who would otherwise be unable to obtain it (for example due to financial hardship). Civil legal aid is available to those who wish to make or defend a case, provided that they have a reasonable chance of winning the case and that they meet certain means-test requirements. Criminal legal aid is available for any defendant in a criminal case, provided that it is in the interests of justice. Again, a means test exists to decide who qualifies for legal aid.


Mens Rea

Mens Rea  in uk legal context " Guilty state of mind" The thoughts and intentions behind a wrongful act( including knowledge that the act is illegal, often at issue in murder trials


Open court

This is a term used to refer to cases that are held in a courtroom that is open to the public.



In the UK, Parliament consists of the House of Commons and the House of Lords.


(Judicial precedent) This term is used to describe the following of legal principles set out in previously decided cases that had similar facts to the current case.

Page: (Previous)   1  2  3  (Next)

Skip Your course resources

Take your learning further

Making the decision to study can be a big step, which is why you'll want a trusted University. The Open University has 50 years’ experience delivering flexible learning and 170,000 students are studying with us right now. Take a look at all Open University courses.

If you are new to University-level study, we offer two introductory routes to our qualifications. You could either choose to start with an Access module, or a module which allows you to count your previous learning towards an Open University qualification. Read our guide on Where to take your learning next for more information.

Not ready for formal University study? Then browse over 1000 free courses on OpenLearn and sign up to our newsletter to hear about new free courses as they are released.

Every year, thousands of students decide to study with The Open University. With over 120 qualifications, we’ve got the right course for you.

Request an Open University prospectus371