Duhaime's Law Dictionary

C
Legal definitions for terms and concepts beginning with C

Copyright
The exclusive right to produce or reproduce (copy), to perform in public or to publish an original literary or artistic work, pursuant to a statute usually called the "Copyright Act", or some similar name.
Corbett Application
Canada: an application by an accused to exclude a prior criminal record from the knowledge of the jury.
Corody
A pension in food or such other things as may be required for sustenance.
Corollary Relief
Relief sought from a Court which is incidental, consequential or additional to another principal relief.
Coroner
A public official who holds an inquiry into violent or suspicious deaths.
Corporal Punishment
A punishment for some violation of conduct which involves the infliction of pain on, or harm to the body
Corporate Secretary
Officer of a corporation responsible for the official documents of the corporation such as the official seal, records of shares issued, and minutes of all board or committee meetings.
Corporation
A legal entity, created under the authority of a statute, which permits a group of people, as shareholders, to apply to the government for an independent organization to be created, which then pursues set objectives, and is empowered with legal rights usually only reserved for individuals, such as to sue and be sued, own property, hire employees or loan and borrow money.
Corpse
A dead human body.
Corpus Delicti
Latin: the body of the offense.
Corrective Force
Force used upon those over which an individual generally has guardian responsibilities, used to remove a dependent from a particular situation or to secure compliance with instructions.
Corrupting Morals
The publication of obscene material that corrupts public morals.
Corruption
The use of public office for private gain.
Costs
A court order that the losing party in litigation must pay the successful party's expenses plus an additional allowance, the latter as a contribution towards the winner's legal fees.
Costs Follow The Event
An award of costs will generally flow with the result of litigation; the successful party being entitled to an order for costs against the unsuccessful party.
Costs if Demanded
An award of costs which is explicitly left to the discretion of the party to whom costs are awarded.
Costs in any Event of the Cause
An entitlement to costs of an interlocutory application regardless of the ultimate result of the main action.
Costs in the Cause
The general rule in the law of costs that the ultimate victor at trial may get his or her costs against the loser and including all interlocutory applications.
Council
A formal group of experts brought together on a regular basis to debate matters within that sphere of expertise, often with advisory powers to government.
Counterclaim
A defendant's claim against a plaintiff.
Counter Offer
A reply to an offer which is conditional.
Coup d'etat
French: an often violent, always sudden and unlawful replacement of an existing government.
Court
Either the room in which, and during which, judicial proceedings are hosted, or to the judicial body presiding over those proceedings, usually personified in the person of a judge.
Court Martial
A military court set up to try and punish offenses taken by members of the army, navy or air force.
Court of Admiralty
A rather archaic term used to denote the court which has the right to hear shipping, ocean and sea legal cases; jurisdiction over maritime law cases.
Court of Exchequer
A law court to consider alleged revenues, debts and duties of the Crown.
Court of Pie Powder
A special court that sat in times of public markets or fairs in England in medieval times, with exclusive jurisdiction over disputes between merchants and consumers and any other dispute arising as a result of the market or fair and on fair grounds.
Court of Record
A court of law which retains written records of its proceedings and which has the ability to fine or imprison.
Covenant
A written document in which signatories either commit themselves to do a certain thing, to not do a certain thing or in which they agree on a certain set of facts.
Coverture Formula
A method of proportionate division of a spouse's pension benefits as accrued during the period of marriage.
Crack
Street name for a form of cocaine base, usually prepared by processing cocaine hydrochloride and sodium bicarbonate, and usually appearing in a lumpy, rocklike form.
Cramdown
In a bankruptcy proceeding, forcing a secured creditor to lose his collateral and instead to take a specified cash payment.
Cramming
The practice of imposing unauthorized charges on consumer credit card and other billing statements
Credit Card
A plastic card issued to concede to the holder, upon presentation to authorized stores or service providers, products or services on credit.
Creditor
A person to whom money, goods or services are owed by the debtor.
Cremation
The reduction of the body of a deceased human to its essential elements by incineration.
Crime
An act or omission which is prohibited by criminal law and punished, usually by fine or imprisonment.
Crimen Omnia Ex Se Nata Vitiat
Latin: property obtained by crime is tainted (vitiated).
Crimes Against Humanity
An international criminal justice offence; the perpetration of acts of war upon a civilian, non-soldier population.
Criminal Bankruptcy
The forced bankruptcy of a convicted person.
Criminal Code
A statute which purports or attempts to set out all prohibited or criminal offences, and their various punishments.
Criminal Contempt
Contumacious behaviour or behaviour which tends to publicly depreciate the authority of the court or the administration of justice.
Criminal Conversation
Criminal conversation: synonymous with adultery.
Criminal Harassment
Unsolicited annoying, alarming or abusive conduct or words which are threatening, and which are prohibited by law.
Criminalist
A crime scene investigator applying science to the recognition, documentation, collection, preservation, and interpretation of physical evidence.
Criminal Law
That body of the law that deals with conduct considered so harmful to society as a whole that it is prohibited by statute, prosecuted and punished by the government.
Criminal Libel
A criminal offence; deliberate publication of defamatory lies which the publisher knows to be false.
Criminal Negligence
Reckless disregard for the lives or safety of other persons.
Criminal Organization
Members of a group of three of more persons involved in organized crime.
Criminologist
A sociologist who specializes in the study of crime as a social phenomenon.
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