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The legal system of the United States of America is very similar, almost to the point of being identical, to the legal system of the English-speaking Caribbean.”Discuss.
The legal system of the United States of America and the English speaking Caribbean are predominantly common law legal systems. Both legal systems share a number of similarities; however, there are quite a number of pronounced differences that would make it impossible for one to conclude that both systems are similar to the point of being identical. This common law legal tradition is based on case law which incorporates the doctrine of judicial precedents. The doctrine is based on the Latin maxim ‘stare decisis’ which means 'let the decision stand. This means that once a ruling was made in a higher court and the facts of the case before the court is sufficiently similar to that previously decided case, then the precedent set out by the earlier case must be followed, and the law applied in the same way. The common law system was very harsh and rigid and was later mitigated by equity. This is a branch of law that was developed alongside common law in order to remedy some of its defects in fairness and justice. In the United States of America there is a federal system as well as fifty (50) state systems. Cases decided in the state systems are binding on that state only and persuasive in other states. However, in the English speaking Caribbean there is only one system in each country and as such decisions made in higher courts are binding on lower courts in that particular country. It is important to note however that a decision made in a Caribbean territory maybe be persuasive in a neighbouring country.
One distinctive feature of the common law legal system is the jury system. This is a system whereby a group of "peers" tries a defendant to determine the facts and establish the guilt or innocence of the defendant. This is done through an adversarial process, that is, an exchange of arguments and

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