Several states have codified maxims of jurisprudence that may advance an argument in themselves and may have been cited in earlier cases that are valuable. These cases may not be located easily except as annotations to the relevant maxim. The maxims are intended to aid in the just application of the law. Derived from the Field Code, the maxims may seem stilted in their wording today, but they state rules of fundamental fairness and equity.
California Civil Code §§1597, 3509-48 sets out the California maxims:
1597. Everything is deemed possible except that which is impossible in the nature of things.
3510. When the reason of a rule ceases, so should the rule itself.
3511. Where the reason is the same, the rule should be the same.
3512. One must not change his purpose to the injury of another.
3513. Any one may waive the advantage of a law intended solely for his benefit. But a law established for a public reason cannot be contravened by a private agreement.
3514. One must so use his own rights as not to infringe upon the rights of another.
3515. He who consents to an act is not wronged by it.
3516. Acquiescence in error takes away the right of objecting to it.
3517. No one can take advantage of his own wrong.
3518. He who has fraudulently dispossessed himself of a thing may be treated as if he still had possession.
3519. He who can and does not forbid that which is done on his behalf, is deemed to have bidden it.
3520. No one should suffer by the act of another.
3521. He who takes the benefit must bear the burden.
3522. One who grants a thing is presumed to grant also whatever is essential to its use.
3523. For every wrong there is a remedy.
3524. Between those who are equally in the right, or equally in the wrong, the law does not interpose.
3525. Between rights otherwise equal, the earliest is preferred.
3526. No man is responsible for that which no man can control.
3527. The law helps the vigilant, before those who sleep on their rights.
3528. The law respects form less than substance.
3529. That which ought to have been done is to be regarded as done, in favor of him to whom, and against him from whom, performance is due.
3530. That which does not appear to exist is to be regarded as if it did not exist.
3531. The law never requires impossibilities.
3532. The law neither does nor requires idle acts.
3533. The law disregards trifles.
3534. Particular expressions qualify those which are general.