The Right of Due Process Guaranteed by the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendment to the US Constitution - Research Paper Example

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The Right of Due Process Guaranteed by the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution Table of Contents Table of Contents 2 Introduction 3 Background 4 What is Due Process? 5 Due Process and the Supreme Court 6 Conclusion 8 References 8 Introduction The United States Constitution is a unique and powerful document the created the system of government within the United States of America…
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The Right of Due Process Guaranteed by the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendment to the US Constitution
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Download file to see previous pages One of the principles that is represented in the Constitution is the right to due process which is given in the Fifth and the Fourteenth Amendments. The Fourteenth Amendment expands on the Fifth applying it to a broader audience. Due process is related to how laws are applied and how they are enforced. For example, if an individual has committed a criminal act for which they need to be penalized, they cannot just be thrown in jail, there has to be the process that is under law. In this case the process involves using a warrant, a trial, and sentencing among other steps. Operating without this process is not only illegal in the example, but it is also unconstitutional. While due process is guaranteed by the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the Constitution, the exact meaning of due process is not clearly established. The ambiguity has meant decisions within the Supreme Court as to the meaning of the phrase and whether it applied to the cases that were being heard at the time. These decisions have helped to shape the current interpretation of the law such as the right of defendants to have representation and for accused to be made aware of their rights before questioning. However, some recent Supreme Court decisions appear to go against the right of due process set forth in the constitution. Background The United States was founded by Europe, and as a consequence was governed by them. Because of the great distance and the disinterest of the British government in its colonists the rule that England exercised over the colonies was mild, at least initially. The desire for change came at the end of the war between the French settlers and the British colonists when the British government demanded taxes from the colonists as payment for the men that it had supplied. The desire to tax the colonists, without allowing them representation in the British courts was one of the reasons for the American Revolution. The revolution began in 1776 and the colonists declared their independence from their founding country, choosing instead to be ruled by law from within. The Constitution promised rights to all Americans regardless of class and rates and detailed the system of government for America, one that served the people rather than serving itself . The Constitution forbids any individual being deprived of “…life, liberty, or property, without due process of the law...” This right is cited both within the Fifth and the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution. The Fifth Amendment applied these rights only to federal courts, while this was expanded for the Fourteenth Amendment to include all states. Due process is not specifically defined within the Constitution, but is generally perceived to mean a judicial procedure that is just and fair, most commonly a trial before peers . It is an important concept and it applies in a wide number of legal cases. What is Due Process? While the Amendments guarantee due process the intention and the legal application of the term is not simple to determine. In particular, the word ‘due’ within the phrase raises significant contention. Is a process ‘due’ if it is within current laws, such as the requirements under law for a trial before ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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