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Legality is the legal admissibility of an act , toleration or omission . The legal term also encompasses the legal existence of legal relationships between people (e.g. legal relationship, legal relationship), between people and property (e.g. legal possession of weapons ) and between people and rights (e.g. permission ). A distinction must be made between this and legitimacy .

Word explanation

The word "legality" comes from the Latin ( Latin lex, legis, legalitas ) and means law / legality, in other words: a law is a collection of generally binding legal norms , which in a formal process by the authorized state body - the Legislature - has been enacted.



According to Immanuel Kant , legality is “the outwardly ascertainable conformity of an action with the law without considering the motive”. The opposite concept is morality , i. H. not just acting in accordance with duty, but acting out of duty.


The opposite of legality is illegality . It denotes a violation of applicable law, regardless of whether by the citizen or the state. As with legality, the relationship to an object is possible. One form of illegality is criminal liability . If a violation of legality has been determined by law as particularly worthy of ostracism, it is a criminal offense. A milder form is an administrative offense .

The legality was also mentioned in connection with parties in the Weimar Republic . In a judgment of February 21, 1930 , the Reichsgericht denied the NSDAP the "character of legality". In modern democracies this is called anti- constitutional .

See also

Web links

Wiktionary: Legality  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Carl Creifelds : Legal dictionary , 21st edition. 2014, ISBN 978-3-406-63871-8 .
  2. Alois Halder: Philosophical Dictionary . (Term legality).
  3. See Rudolf Breitscheid's speech in the Reichstag on February 24, 1932.