The term due process connotes a number of meanings. Basically, due process is a jurisprudence or principle of law that an individual and the government must always respect with regards to a legal person’s judicial or legitimate rights. These rights include one’s existence, freedom and property which were relatively specified in the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution. According to United States Law, this rationale provides a person with a different power to impose his or her innate rights against all possible forms of offenses. Ultimately, due process is oftentimes understood and accepted as a principle that identifies the restrictions of laws and judicial proceedings in order for the government, criminal justice and even the legislators to ensure important equity or justice and freedom.
Due process is appropriately characterized in just one word: fairness. Historical accounts state that the United States Constitution, legislative acts and legal cases provided a common and impartial treatment of individuals by the federal and state governments. Naturally, these fair and accepted standards are what are known as due procedures. The thought is that laws and judicial proceedings must at all times be fair. In other words, the U.S. Constitution warrants that no person nor the government cannot remove one’s fundamental rights to “life, liberty or property without due process of law” (Rinkle, 2005).
History traced due process from England’s “Magna Carta” where in due process was regarded as “law of the land” and “legal judgment of peers” (Mount, 2008). Hence in U.S.’ context, due process pertains to the manner and reason of law enforcement. Additionally, it refers to all individuals, native or foreign citizens and corporations. In its specific essence, the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution states that due process means “No person shall be … deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law…” while the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution says that “No State shall deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law…” (Mount, 2008).
Generally, it ensures the following rights: right to a just and public legal proceeding which is done in an effective manner; right to attend a legal proceeding; right to a fair jury; right to defend himself or herself; right to a clear and written law wherein a sensible individual can understood the nature of criminal conduct; right to correct usage of taxes such as its utilization for the benefit of the public; right to fair taking of property such as utilization by the government for public purpose, and right to fair compensation of taken belongings (Mount, 2008). Lastly, due process should always serve important purposes such as to create more correct results or avoid the incorrect loss of one’s interest as well as to enable persons to feel fair treatment from the government.
Mount, S. (2008). Constitutional Topic: Due Process. U.S. Constitution Online. Retrieved June 24, 2008 from U.S. Constitution database.
Rinkle, R. (2005). Due Process. Lectric Law Library. Retrieved June 24, 2008 from Lect Law database.