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Answers to legal questions are often highly specific to the jurisdictional context that the OP is asking. Do we need to make a location specific tag required (at least a country) when asking questions?

  • 1
    I would say yes. It would help people answering find geographic areas they can answer questions for more efficiently. – Fernando May 26 '15 at 22:01
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    @JohnFx : as it has been discussed on Area51, I suggest to require a at least one locale tag. – user4 May 26 '15 at 22:14
  • The only extensible jurisdiction tagging scheme with global scope that I know if is the Legal Resource Registry. Not sure if it will be taken as a disclosure or a plug, but the LRR is maintained in connection with the Juris-M reference manager, a Zotero variant that I maintain for use by students in the law faculty where I work (and the world at large). The LRR is set up to export data in various formats - feel free to fork and remix for use on the site. – Frank Bennett May 31 '15 at 11:36
  • Would be interesting to have the questions 100% un-localized and for each location could have a valid answer. That way we could have one question and simply select your location of interest to get the valid answer for that location. – Patrick W. McMahon Jun 15 '15 at 21:37
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In my opinion, tags are the ideal way to limit questions to specific jurisdictions. On Stack Overflow, you can ask an object initialization question that will have very different answers depending on whether it's tagged , , or . There might be some overlaps, but it's better to be very specific about the domain of the question. In the same way, I expect that most legal questions depend primarily on jurisdiction. There might be answers that apply across legal domains other than jurisdiction such as Common law, Civil law, International law, Admiralty Law, etc. So those seem like useful tags as well.

What I can't imagine being very useful is a question that does not specify some jurisdiction or domain.

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    I absolutely agree. It would also be great if the tags can recognize greater/lesser levels of abstraction. For example, if the "Delaware" jurisdiction tag is used, then searches using the "Third Circuit" tag should include "Delaware." – JSW189 May 26 '15 at 22:38
  • So is there a way to tag a tag so that we can require at least one jurisdiction tag? – Chad May 27 '15 at 0:20
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I suspect most questions on this site will have jurisdictional differences, and may in many cases not even be settled law. I would urge us not to parochialize the site unnecessarily. I.e., whenever possible let's allow people to ask questions without specifying a locale, and provide answers that include nuances specific to locales. Even if the OP specifies a locale, an answer that applies to a different locale should still be allowed, and encouraged if it would illuminate others interested in the general question.

E.g., I live in Pennsylvania, and I may have a burning question peculiar to my township's ordinance. While I would love an official opinion from my town's solicitor, and would certainly mark that as "the answer," I am on this site expecting to hear how the subject is or has been legally addressed throughout the country and the civilized world.

  • So you mean that for this question, for example, an answer saying "In the US, it is like this ..." should be allowed, even if it doesn't mention UK in any way? – Petr Hudeček May 27 '15 at 9:59
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    @PetrHudeček Yes. I'm quite interested in comparing and contrasting, and as posed the question will attract people searching for the answer in other locales. Now if the question title said, "In the UK when do I have to show ID..." that would get awkward, so in such a case I would advocate editing it to allow for answers covering any locale while making it clear that the OP is interested in the answer for the UK. (Consider the alternative: We have a copy of that same question tagged for each locale. I don't think such a proliferation is as useful.) – feetwet May 27 '15 at 14:55
  • If you are interested in comparing law, you should use the (comparative-law) tag. The same question for each locale is useful. As a user, if I am searching for a question similar to mine, I will most definitely put the jurisdiction (e.g. united-states) in my search. That makes US answers on UK questions not only pointless, but counter-productive – Andrew Jul 1 '15 at 19:11
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There are too many locations and there will be too few people on this site. The original poster can specify a location via a tag but answers that offer how it works elsewhere should not be considered incorrect, i.e. should not be downvoted on the basis that they don't answer the question.

For example, laws are very similar across Europe but there are differences. It would, of course, be better for the asker to receive an answer specific to his country but an answer explaining how it works elsewhere might also help him. It is unlikely that for each question, there will be an active visitor of this SE site that knows the answer in that specific country, especially for difficult questions.

Thus, perhaps a location tag should recommended, but even answers that don't even touch that location should be permitted.

As for whether the tag should be required, we do not have the technical capability to make that happen. The question is not whether the tag should be required but whether the asker should be required to limit himself to a single jurisdiction.

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