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The judiciary is the branch of government vested with judicial power to make, interpret and apply the law. The term also means the court system, or the body of judges. In the United States, the judiciary shares power with the executive branch and the legislative branch.

Although sub-par public schools often teach that the role of the judiciary in the United States is limited to interpretation and application of laws, historically the judiciary has made the majority of law in the United States. The power of the judiciary to make law is unique to American and British common law, with civil law jurisdictions such as France and much of Europe restricting the judiciary to interpretation and application of legislation.

Beginning with the founding of the United States, the American judiciary was tasked with the creation of virtually all law related to contracts, torts, and later, corporations. It was not until the New Deal and the emergence of anti-democratic administrative agencies, that the role of courts in creating the majority of American law began to wane.