The three departments into which civil law was traditionally divided: persons, property, and modes of acquiring property (obligations).
Law of Property – the category of law dealing with proprietary rights in rem (relating to “things”), such as personal servitudes, predial servitudes, and rights of real security.
Law of Status – the category of law dealing with personal or nonproprietary rights, whether in rem (relating to “things”) or in personam (relating to persons).
Law of Obligations – the category of law dealing with the modes of acquiring property in personam (relating to persons), particularly relations between the obligor and the obligee.
In modern civil codes, which follow the model of the German Civil Code (following the Barbarian conquest of old Rome), civil law is divided into five books: general principles, obligations, family law, property, and succession.
General Principle of Law – a principle recognized in all kinds of legal relations, regardless of the legal system to which it belongs.
Family Law – marriage, divorce, adoption, child custody and support, child abuse and neglect, paternity, assisted reproductive technology, and other domestic-relations issues.