Law Level is an indication of the relative oppressiveness of the world (planet) of whom the law serves more: the inhabitants (...and visitors) [distributed power] or the government and politicians of a planet (...or polity) [centralized power].
- The more centralized or autocratic a government (polity) is, the more likely the higher laws codes will be more oppressive.
- The less centralized or more distributed a government (polity) is, the more likely the lower laws codes will be more democratic.
Library Data Referral Tree
- Observing Charted Space
- Universal World Profile (UWP)
- PBG Sequence
- COG Sequence
- Other System Data
UWP Data: The (Law Level) code of the UWP is categorized on the (UWP Law Level Code Table) to show prohibitions against weapons. It also influences the difficulty to avoid being harassed or arrested by local authorities.
The Law Level is only a guideline on local restrictions on possession and use of weapons by individuals. Police, Bonded Security and Military forces are usually not bound by these law levels, although they may be influenced by them. Private Security are bound by the same restrictions as individuals.
Note that Imperial Law can be described as Law level 1. Since Imperial Law supersedes Local Law within the Imperium, it could be argued that there is nowhere within the bounds of the Imperium where the Law level is actually zero.
UWP Code Table
|UWP Law Level Codes|
|Code||Description||Prohibited Weapons/Controls (including those of earlier codes)|
|0 (Zero)||No Law||No Prohibitions (Nuclear Weapons)|
|1||VLow Law-1||Body Pistols, Explosives, Poison Gas, etc.|
|2||VLow Law-2||Portable Energy Weapons|
|3||VLow Law-3||Machine Guns, Automatic Weapons, etc.|
|4||Low Law-1||Light Assault Weapons|
|5||Low Law-2||Personal Concealable Firearms|
|6||Low Law-3||All firearms except Shotguns|
|8||Moderate Law-2||Blade Weapons Controlled|
|9||Moderate Law-3||No weapons outside home|
|A (10)||High Law-1||Weapon possession|
|B (11)||High Law-2||Rigid control of civilian movement|
|C (12)||High Law-3||Unrestricted invasion of privacy|
|D (13)||VHigh Law-1||Paramilitary law enforcement|
|E (14)||VHigh Law-2||Full-fledged police state|
|F (15)||VHigh Law-3||All facets of daily life rigidly controlled|
|G (16)||XHigh Law-1||Severe punishment for petty infractions|
|H (17)||XHigh Law-2||Legalized oppressive practices|
|J (18)||XHigh Law-3||Routinely oppressive and restrictive|
|K (19)||UHigh-1 Law||Excessively oppressive and restrictive|
|L (20)||UHigh-2 Law||Totally oppressive and restrictive|
|M (21)||UHigh-3 Law||The government is not afraid to use mind control technologies or slavery.|
Law is an important component of developing civilizations and helps society to control or direct population behavior and focus on group goals. Almost all technological and sophontic civilizations develop the concept law within TL-1 through TL-3 Technological Epoch.
Law is also a very handy tool for autocrats or dictators to establish and control power. Most societies have extensive experience with dictatorships (oppressive rule) and carefully monitor their laws in an effort to minimize or prevent inefficient governance.
Law Levels & Police States
Generally any law level above LL-11 would be considered Authoritarian, law levels of 14 or higher would be a police state. Typical authoritarian government restricting freedom of movement with cameras recording all public movement and some private would be at Law Level 11 to 12. On high tech worlds, though, presence of convenience devices giving verbal control of lighting, entertainment consoles, and other household items, will continuously record the inside of a home, would constitute Law Level-12, even if the devices are voluntary but ubiquitous. The citizens might even agree with the monitoring in some cases, given the extra benefits given. For an average citizen the feeling of general oppression in daily life would begin with Law Level-13, which would also be common in occupied territory, or territory with a history of civil strife or rebellion.
True totalitarian government, with all aspects of life monitored, would begin with LL:15-16. Interestingly enough the Imperial classification for Zhodani worlds would be LL-21, but the Zhodani equivalent law levels do not consider the use of mind control and monitoring to be a consideration with law level.