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Researching Foreign Customary Law

The purpose of this lesson is to provide an introduction to customary law systems and to offer suggestions for researching the laws of countries where customary law is still being practiced. Because customary law is not written down and is therefore very difficult to research, the lesson will discuss the importance of secondary source, non-legal sources, government, IGO, and NGO reports, and case law or codifications reflecting principles of customary law as might be found in a mixed legal system.

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