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Jurisdiction

The meaning of «jurisdiction»

Jurisdiction (from Latin juris 'law' + dictio 'declaration') is the legal term for the authority granted to a legal entity to enact justice. Colloquially it is used to refer to the geographical area (situs: location of the issue. In federations like the United States, areas of jurisdiction apply to local, state, and federal levels.

Jurisdiction draws its substance from international law, conflict of laws, constitutional law, and the powers of the executive and legislative branches of government to allocate resources to best serve the needs of society.

Generally, international laws and treaties provide agreements which nations agree to be bound to. Such agreements are not always established or maintained. The exercise of extraterritorial jurisdiction by three principles outlined in the UN charter. These are equality of states, territorial sovereignty and non-intervention.[1] This raises the question of when can many states prescribe or enforce jurisdiction. The Lotus case establishes two key rules to the prescription and enforcement of jurisdiction. The case outlines that jurisdiction is territorial and that a state may not exercise its jurisdiction in the territory of another state unless there is a rule that permits this.[2] On that same note, states enjoy a wide measure of discretion to prescribe jurisdiction over persons, property and acts within their own territory unless there was a rule that prohibits this.[3]

Supranational organizations provide mechanisms whereby disputes between nations may be resolved through arbitration or mediation. When a country is recognized as de jure, it is an acknowledgment by the other de jure nations that the country has sovereignty and the right to exist.

However, it is often at the discretion of each nation whether to co-operate or participate. If a nation does agree to participate in activities of the supranational bodies and accept decisions, the nation is giving up its sovereign authority and thereby allocating power to these bodies..

Insofar as these bodies or nominated individuals may resolve disputes through judicial or quasi-judicial means, or promote treaty obligations in the nature of laws, the power ceded to these bodies cumulatively represents its own jurisdiction. But no matter how powerful each body may appear to be, the extent to which any of their judgments may be enforced, or proposed treaties and conventions may become, or remain, effective within the territorial boundaries of each nation is a political matter under the sovereign control each nation.

The fact that international organizations, courts and tribunals have been created raises the difficult question of how to co-ordinate their activities with those of national courts. If the two sets of bodies do not have concurrent jurisdiction but, as in the case of the International Criminal Court (ICC), the relationship is expressly based on the principle of complementarity, i.e., the international court is subsidiary or complementary to national courts, the difficulty is avoided. But if the jurisdiction claimed is concurrent or, as in the case of International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), the international tribunal is to prevail over national courts, the problems are more difficult to resolve politically.

Related Searches

Jurisdiction strippingJurisdiction under the Brussels I RegulationJurisdiction of the International Court of Justice
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Jurisdictional errorJurisdictional factJurisdictional conferences (United Methodist Church)

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