Individual in Relation to Collective Legal Need

Law is the embodiment of the attempt to balance conflicting demands on our shared lives. This follows from what I have said about democratic listening and political knowledge. Some of these demands will be grounded in legal needs. By legal needs, I mean normative needs that only law can meet (see chapter 4 of my MA thesis). These laws will in turn make demands of individuals and will thereby create legal needs in the sense of need from legal services to cope with the demands of the law. For example, a nonprofit corporation may have to make annual filings for the sake of transparency, which is a legal need insofar as it is an important step to preserve healthy democratic institutions.

Consequently, a legal demand may arise from a problem that someone else has and particularly in cases of mass non-compliance, surveying individuals will not accurately capture the existence of this unmet need.

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