Christmas Angel by Lisa Marie Rice

By Lisa Marie Rice

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Currently, there is widespread discussion about how bankers should be regulated. Here too regulation is argued to be justified on the grounds that it fi lls gaps left by market failure. Indeed, it has long been recognized that untrammelled capitalist activity contains its own contradictions. There is an inexorable tendency for capitalists to accumulate market position and, if possible, dominate that position through the exercise of monopoly power. However, the shift from competition to monopoly poses a fundamental threat to the operation of the market.

18 introduction to the english legal system The regulation of human relationships Another important function of law is the regulation of the nature and extent of human relationships. The definition of and the formalities relating to the creation of marriage (and more recently civil partnerships between same-sex couples) are determined by legal rules, often supplementing different religious rules. Law provides a framework for the distribution of assets on the breakdown of marriage and civil partnership.

To give a simple example, if women are excluded from the workforce, 50 per cent of the available talent is thereby excluded. 1 Legal system explained The Equality Act 2010 The Equality Act replaces previous anti-discrimination laws with a single Act aiming to make the law simpler and to remove inconsistencies. The Act covers nine ‘protected characteristics’, which cannot be used as a reason to treat people unfairly. As every person has one or more of the protected characteristics, the Act potentially protects everyone against unfair treatment.

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