Q:

What is the definition of "statutory rights" in law?

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Quick Answer

Statutory rights, also referred to as civil rights, are rights that are defined by the laws of the place in which they are granted to citizens, according to US Legal. For example, the rights to vote or hold property are considered statutory rights since they would not exist without a social structure in place that allows for the institutions of democratic voting and the holding of private property.

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Full Answer

According to US Legal, some statutory rights are given on a countrywide level, while others vary from district to district within that country. For example, there are several major U.S. federal laws related to privacy, which secure the privacy of financial records, prohibit credit agencies from sharing information without authorization and bar agencies from using private information for an unspecified purpose. There are also state statutes that govern how people's names and likenesses can be used without their consent.

The term statutory rights is more common in the UK, while the equivalent term in the United States is civil rights. According to the BBC, the phrase began to receive increased attention from consumers when the disclaimer about statutory rights not being affected began to appear on a variety of consumer goods in the context of return policies. Statutory rights remaining unaffected means, for example, that even if a consumer returns an item as defective, that person doesn't waive the right to sue the company for other damages or injuries resulting from the product.

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    The first ten amendments, comprising the Bill of Rights, define the civil rights of all male citizens of the United States. The 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments address the rights of African Americans, and the 19th Amendment grants women's suffrage.

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