Law and Society

Although she is from Penang and married a fine young man from Johor Bharu, they were married in Golok because her father had objected to her marriage. She helped her husband to set up a stall by using her RM10,000 savings. She also actively participated in the business until she gave birth to their twins. Since then, she became a fulltime housewife. Her husband’s business flourished and he had bought a house, a car and share worth RM50,000.

In mid-2003, her husband had an affair with another woman and had neglected her and the children and had not given her any allowances. She was then pregnant. She had informed her husband that if he continued to neglect her and did not give her any allowances, she would go back to her parents and two months ago, she returned to her parents’ house. Recently, her husband was knocked down by a reckless driver in a road accident. The driver left the scene of the accident immediately after the accident.

Last week, Suzana gave birth to a baby girl, Rainah at the Bumiputera Maternity Hospital at 30 weeks old. Being premature, she was kept in an incubator and was given oxygen therapy for three weeks. At the time she was discharged, her parents were not told of any defect in her eyes and subsequently, she was suffered from retrolental fibroplasia and said to have been caused by excessive oxygen administered immediately after birth and prior to the discharge from the hospital. Due to the problems, Suzana refused to pay for the services in the hospital.

Discuss the classification of law involved in this situation.

Answer

1) Suzana and Her Husband

Private law and Civil law – concern matters that affect the rights and duties of individuals amongst themselves, i.e Suzana and her husband - private and civil law that is involved in this case also aims to provide remedies to the aggrieved party, i.e. Suzana. Since Suzana and her husband are muslims (Islamic family law), therefore the case falls under the Syariah law.

2) Suzana’s husband and the Reckless Driver

Private law and Civil law – concern matters that affect the rights and duties of individuals amongst themselves, i.e Suzana’s husband and the reckless driver private and civil law that is involved in this case also aims to provide remedies to the aggrieved party, i.e. Suzana.

3) Suzana and Bumiputera Maternity Hospital

Private law and Civil law – concern matters that affect the rights and duties of individuals amongst themselves, i.e Suzana and Bumiputera Maternity Hospital - private and civil law that is involved in this case also aims to provide remedies to the aggrieved party, i.e. Suzana.

4) Reckless Driver and the State

Criminal law and Public law – the act of the reckless driver leaving the scene of the accident without reporting the accident to the authorities would cause an action being taken against him under the criminal law and thus criminal law falls under public law as the case involves the relationship between an individual (i.e. reckless driver) and the State.

5) Occurred in Malaysia

National law – since all the disputes and problems occurred in Malaysia. The national law is also known as municipal law, i.e. law operative within a particular state.

6) Rights

Substantive law – Suzana’s rights against her husband, her husband rights against the reckless driver, Suzana’s rights against the Bumiputera Maternity Hospital and the crime committed by the reckless driver are concerns substantive laws.

7) Procedure

Procedural law - Civil Procedure Code and Criminal Procedure Code – in pursuing the case in court, all the parties in the fact situation must observe certain procedures. Civil Procedure Code outlines the procedure in the civil cases and Criminal Procedure Code outlines the procedure for criminal case.