Legal

Resources for Improving Legal Department Operations

  • What is Corporate Law?

    The corporate legal group plays a vital role in the overall operation of the company. Legal divisions are responsible not only for litigation, but also for maintaining commitments to clients and shareholders and ensuring compliance with various internal and external policies and regulations. A legal group also helps to protect the firm and the intellectual property that it generates.
  • The History of Corporate Law

    Roman law considered corporations to be legal entities even before the reign of Justinian and the issuance of the Justinian code in 534 AD. Throughout the Middle Ages, civil law continued to recognize the rights and responsibilities of corporations, particularly the Church, universities and some incorporated city and municipal governments. The English common law, later mostly adopted by the United States, similarly recognized corporations as legal “persons” with the same protections and liabilities as “natural persons.” Corporations, just as wealthy individuals, retained lawyers to navigate the increasing litigation of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. By the nineteenth century, the US government expanded the regulation of corporations, especially through the Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890, which was designed to eliminate monopolies. Increasing regulation through the Progressive Era required more substantial development of legal divisions to protect companies from potential liability. Federal regulation during the Great Depression added further standards with which companies had to comply.

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