The Law Dictionary

Your Free Online Legal Dictionary • Featuring Black’s Law Dictionary, 2nd Ed.

LEGAL REALISM Definition & Legal Meaning

Definition & Citations:

A perspective that legal rules are to benefit the larger society and public policy based on judicial decisions. Neither dogma or supernatural authority applies. A court is expected to determine ‘legal rights’ and ‘legal duties’. In the extreme, a judge considering rights an accused, is in fact deciding what rights this judge is going to let the accused have. It is an absurdity, where the law is not applied.

TLD Example: The judge was accused of engaging in legal realism by seeming to adhere to public policy rather than engaging in a strict interpretation of the law.


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