What are the relationships between business ethics and laws?
Having discussed business ethics in relation to right and wrong, individuals may presume that ethics and the law to not be too dissimilar. This can be interpreted in that way due to the law also attempting to distinguish between right and wrong actions, therefore, resulting in a substantial overlap between ethics and the law. According to Crane and Matten;
“the law is essentially an institutionalisation or codification of ethics into specific social rules, regulations, and prescriptions … of the minimum acceptable standards of behaviour”,however, the two terms are not the same. In order to, gain a visualisation of the distinction between ethics and the law its best to see the two as intersecting terms
Nonetheless, several ethically debatable concerns, either in business or anywhere else, are not unequivocally protected by the law. For example, selling weapons to oppressive regimes, or organisations preventing employees from forming unions, is not prohibited by law. Likewise, there are also matters which are not really about ethics but are still covered by the law. For example, there are laws in place to command people to drive on the left side of the road. While this avoids pandemonium on the streets, the choice of which side to drive on is not an ethical decision.