Legal Vocabulary

Word or Phrase Meaning
Respondeat supieror The employer is responsible.
Vitiate Spoil or impair the efficiency or validity of.
Conveyance The legal process of transferring property from one owner to another.
in vacuo in a vacuum; in isolation without reference to related evidence.
Arrears Money that a party fails to pay when due.
res judicata A matter that has been adjudicated by a competent court and may not be pursued further by the same parties. A matter settled by law.
Indenture A formal legal agreement.
Gravamen The essence or most serious part of a complaint or accusation.
in futuro At a future time.
inter se Between or amongst themselves.
supra Used to refer to someone or something mentioned above or earlier.
venire facias de novo (venire de novo) A new trial delivered because original was a mistrial, or procedurally incorrect.
Preclude Prevent from happening; make imposible.
Depending on chance or dice or random.
Nominal In name only, small.
stare decicis Horizontal precedence.
Forebearance The action of refraining from exercising a legal right, especially that of enforcing the payment of a debt. Interest is included usually.
Non-assumpsit A defense stating evidence which disaffirms the obligations of a contract.
Adduce Cite as evidence.
Inter alia Among other things.
locus sigilli The place of the seal (in terms of making a contract official, archaic now).
alias summonses A summons issued when the original has not produced its effect because it was defective in substance or procedure, and when issued, supercedes original summons.
Summons An order to appear before a judge or magistrate.
quantum meruit As much as deserved (in determning recovery value in contracts). SERVICES
quantum valebat As much as deserved (in determning recovery value in contracts). GOODS
Peremptory Not open to appeal or challenge.
Intestate A person who has died before making a will.
Tacit Understood or implied without being stated.
Assumpsit Evidence affirming the obligations of a contract.
Restitution Compensation for loss.
Perdurable Enduring continuously; imperishable.
Ubi ius remedium Wherever there is a right, there is a remedy.
per se By itself or themselves; intrinsically.
Tenuous Very weak or slight.
Prima facie Accepted as correct until proved otherwise.
a fortiori By the stronger (reason).
Attenuate Weakened in force or effect; unnaturally thin (in a wholly separate concept.
Ameliorate To make (something bad or unsatisfactory) better.
Appurtenance An accessory or other item associated with a particular activity or style of living.
Demurrer A pleading stating that even if the evidence is true, the evidence does not constitute a legal basis for a claim or suit.
Aver To allege or state as a fact in support of a plea.
Novation The substitution of a new contract in place of an old one; Relieved of original obligations of contract after modification.
Estoppel in pais A right arising from acts which have induced a change of position in accordance with the real or apparent intention of the party against whom they are alleged.
Estoppel in pais – Equitable estoppel Where a person makes a representation which another relies upon, the person making the representation cannot deny the truth of the fact represented.
Estoppel in pais – Promissory estoppel An alternative to the method of Consideration. Renders promises lacking consideration and or other elements necessary for legal enforcement, enforcable.
Perpescuious Plain to understanding.
Mitigate To make less severe; to lesson the gravity of.
Enjoin To prohibit someone from performing by issuing an injunction.
(Easement) Appurtenant Belonging to; pertinant to. An easement attached to the land.
Puissant Having great power or influence.
Abrogate Repeal or do away with.
ex jure naturae By the law of nature.
damnum absque injuria Loss without injury.

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