Duhaime's Law Dictionary

S
Legal definitions for terms and concepts beginning with S

Sequestration
The taking of someones property, voluntarily (by deposit) or involuntarily (by seizure), by court officers or into the possession of a third party, awaiting the outcome of a trial in which ownership of that property is at issue.
Servient Tenement
The land which suffers or has the burden of an easement.
Servitia Debita
Latin: services rendered to pay off a debt.
Servitude
From Roman law and now a feature of civil law; equivalent to the common law's easement: access rights over, under or on the property of another.
Set-Off
An alleged cross claim by a defendant against the plaintiff which, if successful, would result in the reduction of elimination of the plaintiff's claim.
Settlement
An agreement, or the document which articulates the agreement, which sets or resolves rights.
Settlor
The person who actually creates a trust by donating property to be managed and administered by a trustee but from which all profits would go to a beneficiary.
Severance Pay
An amount of money an employer owes to an employee in lieu of notice, in exchange for the employee's agreement to sever an employment contract forthwith.
Sex
The predominant sexual identity of an individual, as in male or female. Also refers to sexual intercourse.
Sexting
The sending of digital text messages containing suggestive, provocative, or explicit sexual photographs.
Sex Trades
Those occupations in which an individual, usually women, offer their intimacy and full persons, for sexual pleasure of a client or clients,
Sex Trafficking
The coercion of an individual into, or maintained therein, prostitution.
Sexual Abuse
The tort or crime of an assault of a sexual nature.
Sexual Assault
A sexual act upon or directed to another which is unwanted and not consented to by the other.
Sexual Exploitation of a Minor
The use of a child for the purposes of pornography.
Sexual Harassment
A term used in human rights legislation and referring primarily to harassment in employment situations, related to sex or gender, which detrimentally affects the working environment.
Sexual Intercourse
Penetration by the penis of a woman's labia.
Sexual Orientation
An individual's preference in terms of sexual relationship with others - whether homosexual or heterosexual.
Share
A portion of a for-profit corporation bought by cash.
Shared Custody
A situation where a child spends about an equal amount of time in the care and home of each of the two separated parents, and the parents share the legal rights in regards to the child.
Shareholder
Persons who own a share(s) of a for-profit corporation.
Shareholder agreement
A contract between the shareholders of the company and the company itself, in which certain things which would otherwise be the purview of the board of directors, are predetermined.
Sharia Law
Muslim or Islamic law, both civil and criminal justice as well as regulating individual conduct both personal and moral.
Sharp Practice
Prohibited conduct by a licensed lawyer in taking, or attempting to take advantage of a slip or overlooked technical matter by the other side to litigation, and to agree to reasonable requests which either prejudice his client or the interests of justice.
Sheriff
Individuals empowered to ensure the security of courthouses generally and courtrooms especially, to keep prisoners secure whilst in the courthouse, to secure jurors during trials and to assist in the execution of court orders.
Sherman Antitrust Act
American federal statutes that defines and prohibits contracts or conspiracies which are designed to restrain trade.
Ship
A boat or any vessel used in navigation.
Ship Mortgage
The pledging and charge upon title of a ship and its machinery as security for a loan.
Shock
A sudden and disturbing impression on the mind.
Shock Probation
A sentencing strategy: a brief period of incarceration followed by release under supervision.
Shoplifting
Willful concealment of unpurchased merchandise of any retail store.
Shotgun Clause
A buy-sell agreement where a shareholder wishes to sell his or her shares, or an irreconcilable disagreement on a fundamental issue in regards to the corporation breaks out between shareholders, the sale can be forced by the sell of the holdings of one shareholder to the other.
Shurb Al-Khamr
Muslim law; the crime of consuming alcoholic beverages.
Sick Leave
Time off from work, paid or unpaid, on account of an employee's temporary inability to perform duties because of sickness or disability.
Sic Utera Tuo Ut Alienam Non Laedas
Latin: use your property in such a fashion so as to not disturb others.
Silent Partner
A person who invests in a company or partnership but does not take part in administering or directing the organization; he or she just shares in the profits or losses.
Similar Fact Evidence
Evidence tendered in a criminal trial to demonstrate that the accused previously engaged in the relevant prohibited activity.
Simony
The selling of miracles or the promise of some other alleged form of Divine service in exchange for money.
Sine Die
Latin: without a day. Taken to mean without fixing a day for continuation.
Sine Qua Non
Latin: without which, not.
Sister Ship Arrest
Maritime law: In the context of a legal claim against a particular ship, and in certain circumstances, the law allows the arrest of another ship belonging to the same owner, called a sister ship.
Situs
Latin: location.
Sixth Amendment
A 1791 amendment to the American Constitution guaranteeing fundamental rights in criminal proceedings such as speedy trial, impartiality, public evidence of witnesses and a right to a lawyer.
Siyasa Shar’iyya
Muslim law as expressed in regulatory decisions or policy of government.
Slander
Verbal or spoken defamation.
Slander of Title
Intentionally casting aspersion on someones property including real property, a business or goods (the latter might also be called slander of goods).
Slavery
When a person (called master) has absolute power over another (called slave) including life and liberty.
Slip Rule
A rule by which a Court can very exceptionally reopen a published order but only to correct a accidental slip or omission such as a clerical error.
Slut-Shaming
The judgment objectifying and passed on the sexuality of woman, often of teenage years, that her choice of revealing or tight apparel is indicative of consent if not encouragement to sexual intimacy.
Small Claims
A regular court but which has simplified rules of procedure and process to deal with claims of a lesser value.
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