Duty - Term Overview


Duty supposes an obligation, against another party, who, on the contrary, has a right. The duty can adopt different forms of obligations, according to the area with which it's related: moral, legal, tax, financial, social, to name just a few of them. In most cases, the breach of duty falls into a sanction, fine or punishment for the person who had the obligation, and according to the magnitude of the unfulfilled duty, the magnitude of those consequences will be.

The moral duty is one that is linked to human behavior or attitudes regarding the scale of values and anti-values. It's a kind of pressure that reason exerts over the will. "As much as I want to do this, I MUST do this, because moral obligation demands it of me." The moral obligation represents action based on positive and correct values ‚Äč‚Äčover human action based on anti values, essentially negative and incorrect.

On the other hand, the legal duty, legally (or juridically) binds two parties, one called "creditor" and the other, called "debtor". In this way, the debtor party is obliged to comply with the creditor party the provision that is the subject of the bond of legal duty.

The tax obligation is one that arises from the legal-tax relationship and that involves the application of taxes (which don't include penalties). For example, fees paid for services provided by communes or municipalities, or fees paid for owning a car. This category also includes income taxes, deducted from commercial or industrial activities that are carried out.

Another type of duty or obligation is "financial", which is related to the issuance of bonds, and constitutes a type of debt. For example, in the Argentine case, when in the face of the 2001 crisis and the entry into default, bonds called BODEN were issued whereby the State agrees to exchange said bonds for legal currency within a specified period of time.

Finally, the so-called "social" obligation, closely linked to values, supposes a commitment that all members of a particular society have, and that they have for the benefit of said society as a whole. Respecting traffic regulations, respect for national symbols, for police authorities, may be some examples of this type of obligation.

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