Equity Through the Ages
|Have you ever wondered why many court decisions make no sense? Does it sometimes seem judges lack basic compassion and fairness to hear cases, and reach logical conclusions? Judges are either elected or appointed. This means the most popular person gets the job. This person may not have the most legal talent, and may lack both common sense and compassion. After a judge is elected or appointed, he or she takes an oath to uphold the laws of the state or territory where he or she is located.|
This location is known as the jurisdiction. One judge was recently quoted as stating, "When I took the oath of office, I agreed to uphold all of the laws of the state, not just the ones I agree with." With more and more laws passed each year, somewhere the ideas of equity, equitable justice, and judicial fairness got lost.
In the not so distant past, the local courthouse was the center of all things legal in a community. The common dispute involved arguments with local tradesmen, disputes with neighboring land owners, or other matters big and small of a purely local interest handled under rules passed into law by locally elected officials. Judges had more freedom to exercise equitable justice to reach logical and fair outcomes in local cases. Only individuals involved in foreign trade found themselves dealing with global disputes and strange judicial systems.
With the global expansion of the internet, e-commerce has evolved in ways which were not possible or imaginable twenty-years ago. Everyone who buys or sells anything using the many services available over the internet is involved in e-commerce. All of these transactions involve contracts with individuals or businesses in other states, territories, or countries.
As certain as the sun will rise in the east, disputes will arise in these cross-jurisdiction e-commerce transactions. One might think a new type of justice is needed to handle these disputes, but the ideal system of justice for today's global economy was actually perfected hundreds of years ago.