A decree (Latin decretum "Decision", " Regulation ", to decernere " decide ") is a measure adopted by a government or a head of state legislation, usually in the form of a regulation or order with the force of law.

In the German legal language, the decree is also called remission. In quite linguistically correct expression, a decree is issued ( by the Authority ), while a decree was made ( by the competent authority ).

Many constitutions allow, in certain cases decrees that can be adopted without parliamentary involvement by the executive branch, such as after the declaration of emergency ( emergency decree ).

In monarchies and presidential systems laws (including parliament adopted ) and regulations are often published by decrees of the respective head of state and put in place, such as in Spain ( Royal Decree, Royal Decree ) or Italy (Decreto del Presidente della Repubblica, Presidential Decree ).

In Belgium, is referred to as Decree (Dutch decreet, French décret ) the rule of law with laws value that was passed by the Parliament of a community or a region (except in the Brussels-Capital Region, where these standards are called ordinances ).

In Roman Catholic canon law is considered decree a legislative in (Legislative same ) administrative act of the Church's legislature or the ecclesiastical administration referred to, which may be addressed to the believers ( General Decree, general order ) or to one or more individuals (single decree, individual decision ). In addition to papal and episcopal decrees and decisions of the councils in the form of conciliar decrees were issued. It decrees are particularly distinguishable from instructions of the ecclesiastical authorities that hold as design guidelines do not own the force of law.