A right is an entitlement.
A duty is an obligation.
The law protects the legal right of every citizen. By being a
citizen of the country, the people are given the legal right.
It is the duty of every individual to protect the rights of each
They may be moral or legal.
In simple words, rights are the common claims of people which
every civilized society recognizes as essential claims for their
development,and which are therefore enforced by the State.
It may be considered as the standard of permitted action within a
The action which is permitted by the law is called legal right or
the act which is recognized or protected by the State is called legal
Moral or natural right means an interest recognized and protected
by a rule of natural justice, an interest the violation of which
would be a moral wrong, and respect for which is a moral duty…
John Austin made a distinction between legal rights and other types of
rights such as Natural rights or Moral rights. By legal rights, he
meant rights which are creatures of law,strictly or simply so called.
He said that other kind of rights are not armed with legal sanction and
cannot be enforced judicially.
On the other hand, Salmond said that a legal right is an interest
recognized and protected by rule of law and violation of such an
interest would be a legal wrong. Salmond further said that:
1. A legal duty is an act that obliges to do something and act, the
opposite of which would be a legal wrong.
2. Whenever law ascribes duty to a person, a corresponding right also
exists with the person on whom the duty is imposed.
3.There are two kinds of duties: Moral Duty and Legal Duty.
4. Rights are said to be the benefits secured for persons by rules
Salmond also believed that no right can exist without a
corresponding duty. Every right or duty involves a bond of legal
obligation by which two or more persons are bound together.
Thus, there can be no duty unless there is someone to whom it is
due; there can be no right unless is someone from whom it is
claimed; and there can be no wrong unless there is someone who
is wronged, that is to say, someone whose right has been violated.
Holland defines legal right as ‘the capacity residing in one man
of controlling, with the assent and assistance of the state the
actions of others’.
According to Gray, a legal right is that power which the man has,
to make a person or persons to do or restrains from doing a
certain act or acts so far as the power arises from society imposing
a legal duty upon the person or persons. He states that the ‘right
is not the interest itself, it is the means to enjoy the interest
secured’.Characteristics of a Legal Right by
According to Salmond, there are five important characteristics of a
Legal Right :
1. It is vested in a person who may be distinguished as the owner
of the right, the subject of it, the person entitled, or the person of
inheritance.(Subject of right/Person of inheritance)
2. It avails against a person, upon whom lies the correlative duty.
He may be distinguished as the person bound, or as the subject of
duty, or as the person of incidence. (Subject of Duty/Person
3. It obliges the person bound to an act or omission in favour of
the person entitled. (Content/Subject of right)
4. The act or omission relates to something, which may be termed
the object of the right. (Object of right)
5. Every legal right has a title, that is to say, certain facts or events
by reason of which the right has become vested in its owner.
(Title of right