The present edition parallels an (also original) German edition and is the basis for a Chinese translation. A predecessor work also appeared in Spanish translation. The book begins with a brief introduction to the common law, its roots, development, and - especially - its methodology which continues to characterize all working with American law. The application of U.S. federal and (individual) state law, respectively, - and of the jurisdiction of federal and state courts - are treated in detail.
A major section surveys, with extensive references, all principal areas of private law (the law of the individual states), including contract, torts, family law, succession, trusts, business associations, civil procedure, and private international law (conflict of laws). Public law subjects, as well as criminal law and procedure, receive brief treatment. Appendices provide information on legal education, the legal profession in the United States, and on other matters.
Commentary, case law, and references to the literature reflect developments through the end of 2009, with occasional references to 2010 materials.