I know very little about law. If I make a mistake in this post, just tell me and I would gladly remove it.

I do not know if I describe my point effectively; here goes. I think, based on my logic, there should be hierarchy to laws which we abide by, and I want to get a better understanding of that framework please. Let me explain with an example. Let's say I have a patent for an idea I came up with. Let's say it is a life saving method, and I choose to charge way too much for it. Let's say that the patent laws did not foresee this situation. My question is, is there a law that would trump my right to my invention, and say that I would be reasonable. What I am trying to ask is if contracts, agreements, and other laws have a limit. And are they enforceable only within some other more stablished laws? And what is that hierarchy please? As I type this, I am thinking the U.S. Constitution would be at the top. In other words, I can not use my contract to accomplish something that would contradict the constitution.

Note: above scenario is completely made up to create the situation I am trying to describe. My real question is not about patent.

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    There are many hierarchies in law. For example, federal law supercedes state law, state law supercedes city law. Statutory law depends on constitutional law; regulatory law is conditioned by statutory law. "Written law" supercedes "interpretive law" (that is, when appeals courts decide how a case is to be resolved, if previous decisions conflict with what the statute, constitution or regulation is – which isn't supposed to happen but does – then the written law is supreme and precedent is disregarded. All law supercedes terms in a contract. etc. Be more specific about what you're asking. – user6726 Aug 28 '16 at 17:00
  • @user6726- Both answers helped a lot. Thanks. – maverick Aug 28 '16 at 17:11

All laws have to comply with the Constitution.

Marbury v. Madison 5 U.S. 137 (1803):

Thus, the particular phraseology of the Constitution of the United States confirms and strengthens the principle, supposed to be essential to all written Constitutions, that a law repugnant to the Constitution is void, and that courts, as well as other departments, are bound by that instrument.

Properly enacted federal law preempts conflicting state law in the same area.

The non-delegation doctrine restricts agencies to only creating regulations consistent with intelligible principles provided by statute.

There is no law that prohibits you from merely charging as much as you want for your invention, but I can imagine situations where you would be violating anti-trust law if you exploited a monopoly.

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  • True at present, but there were maximum legal prices on gasoline in the US between 1973 and 1979; many price controls during WWII. Price is often capped for rent and interest rates, and in some regulated businesses, prices have to be approved by a government board. – user6726 Aug 28 '16 at 17:18
  • I meant in relation to selling your invention. – user3851 Aug 28 '16 at 19:50

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