Poverty is a phenomenon affecting much of the world's population. Beyond being a purely legal problem, poverty has become a deliberating problem of class and a predominant condition of ‘societal vulnerability’ that stands in the way of the enjoyment of basic fundamental rights that makes the emblems of equality and human dignity to be nothing but an expression of ‘rich man's law’ rather than ‘human rights law’. This dissertation examines the concept of poverty as both a condition of legal and societal vulnerability with primary focus on the poor in Egypt. With inequality being central to its functioning, the capitalist system in Egypt has created a situation where the formally equal are both socially and materially unequal in the enjoyment of rights, benefits and most importantly protection. Poverty as a condition of vulnerability creates a population at the margins of society and of de facto law. With human rights law recognizing special rights for ‘vulnerable groups’, this dissertation calls for the recognition of ‘the poor’ as a vulnerable group in need of special rights to realize the true essence of the equality of all before the law.