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Legal Standing of the Undead


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#1 Rhuen

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 11:12 AM

came up in another thread.

 

Lets say we learned it was possible for people to come back as things like vampires, zombies, mummies, ghouls, and such.

 

and be sapient beings.

 

 

What legal rights could they expect to have, if any?

 

We are talking they were dead for awhile in some cases then revived from the graves.

 

Could tax collectors and debt collectors still go after them?

 

Would they still be counted as citizens? able to vote?

 

What is the current legal standing on the effects of death in these matters?

 

for example double jeopardy of those sentenced to death, which there is a precedence for. (involves ressucetation experiments), where the death penatly is the sentence; if they came back after being killed, the sentence was already carried out and they can not be imprisoned or sentenced again for the same crime after sentence has been carried out.

 

Also legal issues in treatment of the undead, would it be manslaughter to accidently kill one? (like accidently open a window and burn a vampire with sunlight?)

 

What legal holes would be enacted regarding the food requirements of the undead.

 

Mummies don't eat, ghouls feed on dead bodies, zombies feed on living flesh, vampires on blood.

 

 



#2 TheUnknowable

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 11:27 AM

food wise: no one would care as long as they only eat animals and/or parts of them.

 

as for debts, taxes, and the like: when you file a death certificate I think they cancel everything.  Under current law they would put a lean on all your property,then try to get your family to pay the rest (or inherit what's left). Effectively, becoming a vampire/zombie would be a one time automatic bankruptcy.

Eventually the laws would have to change to accommodate them, but it would probably take a decade to do anything unless they have a lot of supporters.

Also, best guess is that if you kill one accidentally the judge would rule it a homicide/man slaughter.  I suppose it would depend somewhat on public opinion though.  In the initial hysteria surrounding the revelation that they were real, most people will think they are evil.  Eventually they will be accepted, then treated by people.  So, first few years, kill them if you want.  After that, manslaughter/homicide.

 

another question:  If you murder someone and they are raised, becoming a zombie, would you still be guilty of murder or just assault/ attempted murder?



#3 Bard of Thorns

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 10:29 PM

Actually, I figured it would be like where an execution attempt fails, and you just kill them again.



#4 Rhuen

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 10:52 PM

I could have sworn in the United States you were only allowed to attempt to execute someone once, If they survived or came back to life they were no longer allowed to be executed or in the later case free to go as they had carried out their death sentence.



#5 Bard of Thorns

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 11:58 PM

Nope.  If it fails, you get to keep going till they actually die. It's not considered a completed sentence until they're kaput.