Government Law




What is Government Law? This topic covers a broad area in the legal field. U.S. Federal Government Law addresses government interactions on a national scale, and is largely composed of administrative law and constitutional law. While State and Local Government Law (state and municipal government law) deals largely with how government operates on the state and local level, with state and city governments and agencies, as well as interactions with businesses and private citizens.

The U.S. Federal Government is composed of three branches: the legislative branch creates law; the judicial branch interprets the law; and the executive branch administers, or “executes” the law. This government is established by the U.S. Constitution.

The Federal Government shares control of the United Sates with individual U.S. State governments. State governments are made up of their own legislative, judicial and executive branches and are given a fair share of autonomy to create laws for their individual states, although federal law holds precedence. State law also establishes and regulates local government for cities, towns, counties, and other communities.

Local Government Law addresses a variety of issues, topics and legal areas. These include, but are not limited to, the following: Sunshine laws for public access to government records and processes; municipal planning for land use and zoning law; licensing and regulatory law; labor rights, discrimination, wage laws and FLSA, FMLA, ADA and more with regards to employment and personnel law for government workers and employers; utilities and telecommunication law for government entities such as gas, water & electric companies, cell phone towers and easements; property taxes, assessments, user fees and other taxation law for city revenues; eminent domain law; environmental law as it applies to government regulations; HRA’s and other housing agencies for development, redevelopment and affordable housing issues; tax abatements and other forms of public finance; and government contracts.

Additionally, there is Tribal Government law. This involves Native American tribes and the powers and authority granted to them as members of various Indian nations, tribes, bands, etc. Tribal Government law deals with the individual tribal governments, rules and laws, as well as their interactions with the U.S. Federal government and state governments. Copyright HG.org

Know Your Rights!

  • Federal, State, or Local: Who has Jurisdiction?

    We often discuss jurisdiction, or hear it used in TV crime shows, but what does “jurisdiction” mean? For that matter, when is something a federal, state, or local matter and who can enforce which laws? How is this determined?

Articles on HG.org Related to Government Law

  • How Federal Debts May Affect Your SSD Paycheck
    Now that you’ve gone through the Social Security disability process and started receiving your monthly benefits, you are free to use the money however you’d like. In most cases, the payments are deposited into your bank account, put onto a prepaid card, or sent to your home by check.
  • Texas Legislation: "Knife Reform" Passed
    When the right to keep and bear arms is debated, the attention is usually focused on firearms. However, a growing “knife reform” movement is bent on removing laws that restrict the kinds of knives someone may legally carry. The Texas Legislature is the latest state body to have passed a knife reform bill and sent it for the signature of Gov. Gregg Abbott.
  • Getting the Government on Your Side as a Whistleblower
    A whistleblower is a person who brings to light information that uncovers fraud, criminal activity or other wrongdoing. Whistleblower claims are the legal avenue which whistleblowers take to report this fraud. Many of the individuals who file these claims do so on behalf of the government, meaning that they are coming forward with information about fraud that drains taxpayer money.
  • The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department's Funding Problem
    In theory, as well as in public support, Texas Parks and Wildlife funding is essential. The funds are garnered through a sporting good sales tax with 94 percent of the revenue slated for ongoing park and wildlife maintenance and 6 percent going to the Texas Historical Commission for maintenance of historical sites throughout the state.
  • Will Your Bill Survive Doomsday in the Texas Legislture?
    As the Texas Legislature enters the end of its session, some bills sit undisturbed, and could very well remain that way for all eternity. Although there are many ways a bill can die, from being voted down in the House or Senate to being vetoed by the governor, one of the easiest ways for a bill to face death is by doing absolutely nothing at all with it. These bills die quietly in committee for reasons that are discussed below.
  • How to Establish a Connection between Your Military Service and Your Disability
    Filing a claim with the Veterans Affairs (VA) for disability compensation for an illness or disability that resulted from your military service? In an ideal world, Houston area Veterans would be able to receive benefits from the VA simply and painlessly; unfortunately, VA disability benefits are quite complicated, the process can take a fair amount of time, and there is a lot of preparation involved.
  • An Introduction to the Davis-Bacon Act
    Contractors working on Federal Projects typically must meet minimum wage requirements. Sometimes, the prevailing wages on Federal projects are higher than required on state public works projects or private project. It's important to know the minimum wage-rate prior to bidding on any government projects.
  • Is There Such a Thing as a Federal Defamation Claim?
    Defamation cases are often either clearly obvious or difficult to determine. There are a number of elements that must be proven in court for a defamation case to be successful in the United States. Certain facts about the victim must have either been published or broadcast in some manner. This may also include false statements provided in the same way.
  • FTC’s Role in Promulgating Laws about Digital Marketing
    Digital marketing and an online presence are utilized by many companies to take advantage of the growing need for the internet connection to an increasing e-commerce world. Because of this, the Federal Trade Commission is pressed to implement guidelines and strategies that are morally and ethically responsible.
  • What Is an OIG Investigation? How Much Trouble Am I In?
    The Office of Inspector General investigations deal with various instances of fraud, waste, abuses situations and misconduct in regards to federal employees, contracted workers and entities that have business with the Federal Trade Commission.
  • All Government Law Articles

    Articles written by attorneys and experts worldwide discussing legal aspects related to Government including: administrative law, case law, election and political law, federal law, government contracts, local, municipal and state law, military law, public law, regulatory law, US federal courts.

Government Law - US

  • ABA - State and Local Government Law Section

    The ABA Section of State and Local Government Law is the premier association for lawyers involved in urban, state, and local government law and policy. Lawyers representing countless government agencies from across the country turn to the ABA Section of State and Local Government Law to access the latest expert information on issues that relate to their practice and share ideas and best practices with colleagues.

  • The U.S. Constitution

    The U.S. Constitution establishes a federal government in which each branch operates independently of the others (separation of powers) but in which the powers of each are restricted by the others and power is not concentrated in any one branch (checks and balances).

  • U.S. Federal Executive Branch

    The executive branch of the government is responsible for enforcing the laws of the land. The president, vice president, department heads (cabinet members), and heads of independent agencies carry out this mission.

  • U.S. Federal Judicial Branch

    Courts decide arguments about the meaning of laws and how they are applied. They also decide if laws violate the Constitution—this is known as judicial review, and it is how federal courts provide checks and balances on the legislative and executive branches.

  • U.S. Federal Legislative Branch

    Article I of the Constitution establishes the legislative or law making branch of government. It has a two-branch Congress—the Senate and the House of Representatives—and agencies that support Congress.

  • Unites States House of Representative

    The chief function of Congress is the making of laws. The legislative process comprises a number of steps, and much information is available from this page concerning the legislation introduced and considered in the 111th Congress.

  • USA.gov

    As the U.S. government's official web portal, USA.gov makes it easy for the public to get U.S. government information and services on the web. USA.gov also serves as the catalyst for a growing electronic government. In June 2000, President Clinton announced the gift from the Federal Search Foundation, a nonprofit organization established by Brewer, and instructed that an official U.S. web portal be launched within 90 days.

Organizations Related to Government Law

  • Department of Justice - Enforcement of Government Law

    Mission: To enforce the law and defend the interests of the United States according to the law; to ensure public safety against threats foreign and domestic; to provide federal leadership in preventing and controlling crime; to seek just punishment for those guilty of unlawful behavior; and to ensure fair and impartial administration of justice for all Americans.

  • G8 Information Center

    Since 1975, the heads of state or government of the major industrial democracies have been meeting annually to deal with the major economic and political issues facing their domestic societies and the international community as a whole. The six countries at the first summit, held at Rambouillet, France, in November 1975, were France, the United States, Britain, Germany, Japan and Italy (sometimes referred to as the G6). They were joined by Canada at the San Juan Summit of 1976 in Puerto Rico, and by the European Community at the London Summit of 1977.

  • The United Nations

    The United Nations is an international organization founded in 1945 after the Second World War by 51 countries committed to maintaining international peace and security, developing friendly relations among nations and promoting social progress, better living standards and human rights. Due to its unique international character, and the powers vested in its founding Charter, the Organization can take action on a wide range of issues, and provide a forum for its 192 Member States to express their views, through the General Assembly, the Security Council, the Economic and Social Council and other bodies and committees.

Publications Related to Government Law

  • Blogs - America.gov

    Blogs at America.gov offers readers a place to discuss designated topics with experts from the United States and around the world, and to share their comments and reactions with the broader Internet public.

  • Government Law Online

    Welcome to Government Law Online, a clearinghouse service of the Government Law Center of Albany Law School. This site contains a collection of government law and public policy articles, studies, papers, and reports written by the faculty, staff, and students of Albany Law School. This site also contains reports, papers, transcripts and materials from Government Law Center programs.

  • How Our Laws Are Made

    First published in 1953 by the Committee on the Judiciary of the House of Representatives, this 24th edition of ''How Our Laws Are Made'' reflects changes in congressional procedures since the 23rd edition, which was revised and updated in 2003. This edition was prepared by the Office of the Parliamentarian of the U.S. House of Representatives in consultation with the Office of the Parliamentarian of the U.S. Senate.

  • Library of Congress - Law Library

    Congress established its Law Library in 1832, recognizing its need for ready access to reliable legal materials. The Law Library has grown over the years to




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