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Offering Services for Multiple Jurisdictions-
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American Common Law Foundations
Anglo Saxon and Anglo Norman Law in England
- Justice was served via self help and vengeance based upon custom - the offended party was free
to exercise retribution upon the offender within bounds set by custom.
- Self help was available if wrongdoer was apprehended in the commission
of the act or could be tracked from the scene of the crime; otherwise, justice
meted out by the Moot or tribal council.
- The Christian church arrived and brought with it the
- Right of Sanctuary
wherein a defendant might seek refuge in a place of worship.
- Trial by Compurgation - both the accuser and the accused presented
compurgators (character witnesses) and the burden of proof relied upon the strength of their testimonials.
LATE EARLY PERIOD
The Trial by Ordeal gained acceptance:
- Trial by Water:
- Cold - the accused was cast into a lake or river; if they floated they
- Hot - the accused had a limb plunged into boiling water and innocence
was determined by the wounds ability to heal.
- Trial by Fire - the accused was made to grasp a hot iron or walked across burning plowshares and innocence was determined by the wounds ability to heal.
- The Accursed Morsel - accused is made to eat a piece of bread or other
dry substance, over which certain prayers had been made, without the aid of any liquid to wash it down; if the accused choked he
Doom System - established by king Ethelbert in 600A.D., the Doom system created a list of offenses and corresponding fees to be paid as compensation to the victim in lieu of vengeance. If compurgatory evidence
was insufficient, determination of guilt was made by the moot.
Hierarchy of Judicial System
Shire Court or Moot
Merchant Courts were established to rule upon these particular
kinds of cases.
1066 A.D. - William the Conqueror established the Aula
Regis a.k.a Curia Regis or King's Court composed of the concilium
ordinarium who became circuit justices.
1200 A.D. - 3 separate common law courts of jurisdiction had been
|Court of the Exchequer
presided over matters of taxes and dues
|Court of Common Pleas
over civil matters
1677 A.D. - Parliament enacted the Statute for The Prevention of Frauds and
Perjuries and recognized property rights in patents, copyrights, debts and
1695 A.D. - The preparation of law reports by authorized individuals was
Licensing of legal practitioners was instituted.
1730+ A.D. - Under the influence of Lord Mansfield the body of
commercial law developed by the merchant courts became a part of English
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