How Is the Law Applied?
Once the court has decided which statutes and precedents apply to the case in front of it, and the finder of fact has decided what the facts are, the statutes and precedents have to be applied to the facts. This is done step by step, and is actually pretty straightforward.
Every statute and every rule of law in a case can be broken down into its most basic parts or steps, which are called “elements.” For example, if someone were being sued for negligently causing a car accident, the plaintiff would have to prove each of the following elements of the rule of law for negligence:
• Breach (or violation of the duty)
The fact-finder applies the rule to the facts of the situation by incorporating ...