Duhaime's Law Dictionary

C
Legal definitions for terms and concepts beginning with C

Certificate of Inheritance
A formal legal probate document issued in Germany.
Certificate of Pending Litigation
A registration or/of a notice or warning that litigation is ongoing as to ownership of a particular piece of land or other real property.
Certification
A procedural first step in class action litigation in which a court determines if the action at issue is amenable to class action proceedings.
Certified Affidavit
A simplified form of affidavit in which the affiant self-certifies the truthfulness of his or her written statement under penalty of perjury.
Certiorari
A formal request to a court challenging a legal decision of an administrative tribunal, judicial office or organization (eg. government) alleging that the decision has been irregular or incomplete or if there has been an error of law.
Cessante Ratione Legis, Cessat Ipsa Lex
Latin: The reason for a law ceasing, the law itself ceases.
Cessate Grant
A grant of probate that is made after a limited grant has served its purpose.
Cestui Que Trust or Cestui Que Use
Latin: the beneficiary of a trust.
Ceteris Paribus
Latin: all things being equal or unchanged.
Challenge for Cause
A challenge of a prospective juror for which the cause is disclosed by the challenging party (or their lawyer), and submitted to the Court for decision.
Chamberdeacon
An Irish beggar.
Chambers
A court which sits to dispose of procedural matters.
Champerty
When a person agrees to finance someone else's lawsuit in exchange for a portion of the judicial award.
Chance Medley
A sudden, unplanned brawl.
Chancery
The English law court with exclusive jurisdiction over equity; now phased-out and merged with the common law courts.
Chancery Lane
A pedestrian lane connecting Gray's Inn with other Inns of the Court in London, England.
Charity
A corporate non-profit body holdings property in trust for educational, religious, anti-poverty or some other purpose beneficial to the community.
Charterparty
A transportation contract which includes the full and exclusive use of the airplane, vehicle or vessel for the duration of the transportation of either goods or persons.
Chasing Order
An order sought by a party seeking return of a child that grants custody of the child to that party after the child has already been removed from the jurisdiction.
Chaste
A person who has never voluntarily had sexual intercourse outside of marriage such as unmarried virgins.
Chattel
Moveable items of property which are neither land nor permanently attached to land or a building, either directly or vicariously through attachment to real property.
Chattel Mortgage
When an interest is given on moveable property other than real property (in which case it is usually a 'mortgage'), in writing, to guarantee the payment of a debt or the execution of some action.
Check or Cheque
A form of bill of exchange where the order to pay is given to a bank which is holding the payor’s money.
Chemotherapy
Toxic drugs administered to a patient to attack and destroy cancer cells.
Child
A young individual who is under the legal age of majority, or who is the natural offspring of another.
Child of the Marriage
A dependent child of two persons, married at the time of conception of the child, and for whom both parents are financially liable.
Child Support
Periodic money payments payable by a non-custodial parent, to the custodial parent, for the care of his or her child.
Chinese Wall
A screening barricade established within a law firm to prevent conflicts of interests between associates.
Chirograph
A medieval form of contract which allowed for several verifiable authentic versions.
Choice of Law Clause
A term of a contract which sets the jurisdiction for dispute resolution, or the applicable law, in the event of any dispute between the conrtracting parties.
Chose In Action
A property right in something intangible, or which is not in one's possession, but enforceable through legal or court action.
Chronic Serious Health Condition
A continuing episodic health condition which requires periodic visits for treament.
Church
A charitable association of persons organized for the advancement of religion and for the conduct of religious worship, services or rites, and that is permanently established.
CIF
Transportation contract acronym for "cost, insurance and freight" usually in reference to the sale price being inclusive thereof.
Circumstantial Evidence
Evidence which may allow a judge or jury to deduce a certain fact from other facts which have been proven.
Citation
An order of a court to either do a certain thing or to appear before it to answer charges.
Citizen Informant
An ordinary citizen who has witnessed a crime and then reports it to law enforcement officials.
Citizen's Arrest
Detainment of a person suspected of having committed a crime, by a person other than a police officer.
Citizenship
The status of an individual as owing allegiance to, and enjoying the benefits of, a designated state.
Civil Action
Any action that is not a criminal proceeding.
Civil Code
A document in civil law jurisdictions that purports to be a compendium of the applicable law as it pertains to the citizen.
Civil Conspiracy
A business tort; an agreement by two persons or more to do an unlawful act or a conspiracy to injure another.
Civil Covenant of Solidarity
A contract by two individuals of the age of majority, of different or same gender, to provide legal rights and obligations as a result of their cohabitation.
Civil Law
A body of law derived and evolved directly from Roman Law, the primary feature of which is that laws are struck in writing; codified, and not determined, as in the common law, by the opinions of judges based on historic customs.
Civil Law Rule
Water law: a person who interferes with the natural flow of surface waters so as to cause an invasion of another's interests in the use and enjoyment of his land is subject to liability to the other.
Civil Liability
A civil law requirement to compensate another because of an unlawful injury to his/her person or property.
Civil Liberties
Natural rights which appertain and are inherent to each person as a human being, and which are protected.
Civil Litigation
The conduct of a non-criminal matter in a court of law from initial advice to client(s) through to the enforcement of judgment.
Civil Rights
Personal rights which civilized communities undertake, by the enactment of positive laws, to prescribe, abridge, protect, and enforce.
Civil Union
A formal union between two people, of the same or of different genders which results in, but falls short of, marriage-like rights and obligations.
Page1 (Ca - Ce) | Page2 (Ce - Ci) | Page3 (Ci - Co) | Page4 (Co - Co) | Page5 (Co - Co) | Page6 (Co - Cr) | Page7 (Cr - Cy)

Always looking up definitions? Save time with our search provider (modern browsers only)

If you find an error or omission in Duhaime's Law Dictionary, or if you have suggestion for a legal term, we'd love to hear from you!