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Concept of Law: Primary Sources of Law

"The Concept of Law is an analysis of the relation between law, coercion, and morality, and it is an attempt to clarify the question of whether all laws may be properly conceptualized as coercive orders or as moral commands". H. L. A. Hart

Primary Sources of Law

Primary sources of law in legal research vocabulary are the texts of enactments by governments containing rules that govern a state jurisdiction.

 Each branch of government, both at the federal and provincial level, produces law.  Understanding the overall landscape of the legal sources, it is helpful before beginning research of one source or one area of law. The chart below is a simplified overview of federal law, listing the major types of law publications of each branch.  Provincial governments produce laws in a similar set-up.

 

The Constitution
↓ ↓ ↓


 

Branch of Govt.

 

Judicial

 

Legislative

 

Executive

Type of Law Produced

 

Case Law

 

Statutes

 

Regulations

Chronological Publication of Law

 

Case Law Reporters

 

Session Laws (Federal Laws)

 

The Gazette of Pakistan

Publication of Law By Subject

PLD, ScMR    etc.

Pakistan Code

Gazette Notifications

Note that each government branch produces law that is published chronologically.  The public laws and regulations are then published in Pakistan code by subject.  Case law is not published by subject (thus, research case law requires a “finding tool” to locate cases by subject).