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Commercial law, also known as mercantile law or trade law, is the body of law that applies to the rights, relations, and conduct of persons and business engaged in
commerce Commerce is the large-scale organized system of activities, functions, procedures and institutions directly and indirectly related to the exchange (buying and selling) of goods and services among two or more parties within local, regional, nation ...
, merchandising, trade, and sales. It is often considered to be a branch of civil law and deals with issues of both private law and public law. Commercial law includes within its compass such titles as principal and agent; carriage by land and sea; merchant shipping; guarantee; marine, fire, life, and accident insurance; bills of exchange, negotiable instruments,
contract A contract is a legally enforceable agreement between two or more Party (law), parties that creates, defines, and governs mutual rights and obligations between them. A contract typically involves the transfer of goods, Service (economics), ser ...
s and partnership. Many of these categories fall within Financial law, an aspect of Commercial law pertaining specifically to financing and the financial markets. It can also be understood to regulate corporate
contract A contract is a legally enforceable agreement between two or more Party (law), parties that creates, defines, and governs mutual rights and obligations between them. A contract typically involves the transfer of goods, Service (economics), ser ...
s, hiring practices, and the manufacture and sales of consumer goods. Many countries have adopted civil codes that contain comprehensive statements of their commercial law. In the United States, commercial law is the province of both the
United States Congress The United States Congress is the legislature of the federal government of the United States. It is Bicameralism, bicameral, composed of a lower body, the United States House of Representatives, House of Representatives, and an upper body, ...
, under its power to regulate interstate commerce, and the states, under their police power. Efforts have been made to create a unified body of commercial law in the United States; the most successful of these attempts has resulted in the general adoption of the Uniform Commercial Code, which has been adopted in all 50 states (with some modification by state legislatures), the District of Columbia, and the U.S. territories. Various regulatory schemes control how commerce is conducted, particularly ''vis-a-vis'' employees and customers. Privacy laws, safety laws (e.g., the Occupational Safety and Health Act in the United States), and food and drug laws are some examples.


History

During
Middle Ages In the history of Europe, the Middle Ages or medieval period lasted approximately from the late 5th to the late 15th centuries, similar to the Post-classical, post-classical period of World history (field), global history. It began with t ...
, Italy was the cradle of many modern institutions at the basis of commercial law. Around the 16th century, the trade of Italian maritime republics was the promoter of the birth of commercial law: the jurist Benvenuto Stracca, (
Ancona Ancona (, also , ) is a city and a seaport in the Marche region in central Italy, with a population of around 101,997 . Ancona is the capital of the province of Ancona and of the region. The city is located northeast of Rome, on the Adriatic S ...
, 1509–1579) published in 1553 the treatise ''De mercatura seu mercatore tractats''; it was one of the first, if not the first, legal imprint dealing specifically with commercial law. This treatise focused on merchants and merchant contracts, practices and maritime rights, to which he soon added extensive discussions of
bankruptcy Bankruptcy is a legal process through which people or other entities who cannot repay debts to creditors may seek relief from some or all of their debts. In most jurisdictions, bankruptcy is imposed by a court order, often initiated by the debt ...
, factors and commissions, third party transfers, and insurance. For this reason, Stracca is often considered the father of commercial law and author of the first Italian treaty about the insurance contract, beyond about the commerce. The legal work of Italian jurists had an impact on
Holland Holland is a geographical regionG. Geerts & H. Heestermans, 1981, ''Groot Woordenboek der Nederlandse Taal. Deel I'', Van Dale Lexicografie, Utrecht, p 1105 and former Provinces of the Netherlands, province on the western coast of the Netherland ...
,
Germany Germany,, officially the Federal Republic of Germany, is a country in Central Europe. It is the second most populous country in Europe after Russia, and the most populous member state of the European Union. Germany is situated between ...
,
England England is a Countries of the United Kingdom, country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Wales to its west and Scotland to its north. The Irish Sea lies northwest and the Celtic Sea to the southwest. It is separa ...
and
France France (), officially the French Republic ( ), is a country primarily located in Western Europe. It also comprises of Overseas France, overseas regions and territories in the Americas and the Atlantic Ocean, Atlantic, Pacific Ocean, Pac ...
. *''Modernisation, National Identity and Legal Instrumentalism'' (Vol. I: Private Law): ''Studies in Comparative Legal History'', Brill, 2019 (p. 118); *Vito Piergiovanni, ''The Courts and the Development of Commercial Law'', Duncker & Humblot, 1987 (p. 14); *Encyclopedia Treccani,
Benvenuto Stracca
'


See also

* Outline of commercial law * Consulate of the Sea


Notes


External links


Hundreds of Answers to Basic Business Law Questions


{{DEFAULTSORT:Commercial Law