The body of law imposed by the military over civilian affairs (usually in time of war or civil crisis); overrides civil law.
Replacement of civilian by military authorities in the maintenance of order.
In the US martial law is usually proclaimed by the president or the government of a state in areas of the country where the civil authorities have been rendered unable to act, or to act with safety. The legal position of martial law is neither well defined in the constitution nor laid down in statutes. In effect, when war or rebellion is in progress in an area, the military authorities are recognized as having the powers to maintain order by summary means. martial-law