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To be considered a mage who is legal, and thus able to cast (allowed) spells without fear of persecution, he or she must typically be part of a mage Order or Academy, or, in some cases, be a legal adviser to a member of nobility or royalty. Mage Legality is a promise between mage and society that is most common in civilized areas of the world, such as within the central nations or within major cities. Some nations beyond the central continents do not necessarily hold the same ideas for Mage Legality.

A mage's legality lasts for as long as the mage in question doesn't break any vows he may have spoken as part of his initiation, break any of the seven Strictures of Magic, or break the laws set by local authorities. Additionally, if a mage abandons his Order or Academy without consent or permission, he is branded an illegal, or otherwise known to the general public as a renegade mage.
Renegade mages are commonly mages who have broken their vows or at least one of the Strictures. Many renegades are also mages who have killed illegally, or otherwise broken local laws. These renegades tend to hide far away from bustling cities and prefer to take their chances in the wilds or within outlying villages. Renegades can be dangerous as they hold no regard for others when it comes to their uses of magic, yet there are also renegades who just simply want to live their life in peace without rules or vows to hold them down. Some renegades also abandon their vows as the result of their uncontrollable magic potential. Their potent magical energies prove to be too much for them to control, and thus they leave and hide somewhere where they can't be of harm to anyone. These mages are simply known as Wild Mages, though they are still technically considered renegades.
Some nations have specific groups or orders that deal with the hunting of renegade mages. The most renowned one is the Vindicators; a sub-order of the Convocation of Mages and the Anorian Sacellum. These hunters train in the arts of resisting and countering magic, and thus improve their chances of facing off dangerous illegal mages. While a typical mission involves apprehending the renegade so that he or she may be held for trial, most encounters end up in bloodshed.
While legal mages must belong to an Order or Academy, there is a small exception to the rule. Freemages, as they are commonly known, are mages who  do not follow or belong to any order. But unlike renegade mages, Freemages are legally allowed to roam freely, so long as they abide by the given rules of magical restraint and common laws. Freemages generally carry some sort of pendant or piece of paper to prove that they are legal mages. These proofs are generally referred to as "Right of Magic". Such proof is usually obtained through a mage of an order or another, more influential Freemage. Lords of some nations can also provide legal documents. Obtaining legal proof of their Freemage status is not as easy as it sounds, as it sets a premise that expects the mage in question to be able to control, supervise and otherwise maintain his or her promises of legality and magical energies without the aid of a third party. Such promises are a expectancy that is rarely upheld, and thus many would be hesitant to give a mage his or her Freemage papers.
In some cases renegade mages have been able to obtain Freemage status, but only after being abolished of all their crimes and sins, which in and of itself is an extreme rarity.