rule of law
rule of law
1: an authoritative legal doctrine, principle, or precept applied to the facts of an appropriate case
adopting the rule of law that is most persuasive in light of precedent, reason and policyWright v. Wright, 904 P.2d 403 (1995)
2: government by law: adherence to due process of law

Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary of Law. . 1996.

rule of law
n.
The belief that a court should make decisions by applying laws or legal and equitable principles to a matter without using discretion in their interpretation and application; also called supremacy of law.

The Essential Law Dictionary. — Sphinx Publishing, An imprint of Sourcebooks, Inc. . 2008.


rule of law
everyone acts under the law. A phrase as old as Aristotle, it has a special meaning in the constitutional law of the UK and in relation to discussions of law and politics everywhere. Perhaps the most practically useful sense in which the doctrine is applied is to demand that the executive must be acting under the law. But even then this authority need not be explicit in a state where everyone is free to do anything unless it is prohibited. In another sense it reflects the view that there is a higher law than that of the government. In the UK no parliament can bind its successor, and it is difficult to see the doctrine operating in this sense, although the supremacy of the law of the European Union has given such a view renewed prominence. The significance of the doctrine in modern times is probably because of the writings of Dicey, who considered that the rule of law involved three issues:
(1) the absence of arbitrary power;
(2) equality before the law; and
(3) liberties and constitutional law generally are the result of law and law made in the courts.
The phrase still has a rhetorical significance, but it is arguable that its technical significance has been overshadowed by the notion of fundamental law or human rights.

Collins dictionary of law. . 2001.


rule of law
n. A substantive legal principle; the prevailing of regular power rather than arbitrary power; the principle that all citizens are subject to the judicial decisions in their states as well as those of the courts of the United States, and that such decisions are the result of constitutional principles.

Webster's New World Law Dictionary. . 2000.


rule of law
Rule according to law; rule under law; or rule according to a higher law.

Dictionary from West's Encyclopedia of American Law. 2005.


rule of law
Rule according to law; rule under law; or rule according to a higher law.

Short Dictionary of (mostly American) Legal Terms and Abbreviations.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • rule of law — A legal principle, of general application, sanctioned by the recognition of authorities, and usually expressed in the form of a maxim or logical proposition. Called a rule, because in doubtful or unforeseen cases it is a guide or norm for their… …   Black's law dictionary

  • Rule of law — stellt ein Konzept dar, das das Regieren auf der Basis von Gesetzen bezeichnet und dem Recht absoluten Vorrang vor anderen Maßstäben oder Begründungen für hoheitliches Handeln einräumt. Es entwickelte sich vor allem vor dem Hintergrund der… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Rule of law — The rule of law, in its most basic form, is the principle that no one is above the law. Thomas Paine stated in his pamphlet Common Sense (1776): For as in absolute governments the king is law, so in free countries the law ought to be king; and… …   Wikipedia

  • rule of law — noun a state of order in which events conform to the law • Topics: ↑law, ↑jurisprudence • Hypernyms: ↑order * * * 1. : a legal rule : a determination of the applicable rule as distinguished from a finding of fact 2. : adherence to due process of… …   Useful english dictionary

  • rule of law —    In a free society, there is a concern to maintain human liberty in the face of increasing state activity. The problem is how on the one hand to provide powers for those in government to operate effectively, yet on the other hand to ensure that …   Glossary of UK Government and Politics

  • rule of law — N SING: usu the N The rule of law refers to a situation in which the people in a society obey its laws and enable it to function properly. [FORMAL] I am confident that we can restore peace, stability and respect for the rule of law …   English dictionary

  • rule of law — a situation in which everyone in a country is expected to obey the laws, including powerful people, military leaders etc Our mission is to uphold the rule of law …   English dictionary

  • rule of law — įstatymo viršenybė statusas T sritis Politika apibrėžtis Konstitucionalizmo principas, kad valstybės valdžią įgyvendinančios institucijos privalo paklusti teisei ir nepažeisti jos nustatytų veikimo ribų. Termino ištakos – Platono, Aristotelio… …   Politikos mokslų enciklopedinis žodynas

  • rule of law — noun 1. the doctrine that all people are equal before the law, and that the government is subject to the law. 2. a concept implying the subordination of the three aims of government (the executive, the legislative and the judiciary) to legal… …   Australian English dictionary

  • rule of law — noun the doctrine that no individual is above the law and that everyone must answer to it. See Also: law and order …   Wiktionary

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