Duhaime's Law Dictionary

Ad Litem Definition:

Latin: for the suit.

Related Terms: Guardian Ad Litem, Litigation

An individual appointed only for the purposes of prosecuting or defending a court action or litigation, on behalf of a vulnerable or otherwise undefended interest (such as a child or mentally-challenged person).

In Latin Words and Phrases for Lawyers:

"For the purpose of the suit. Thus in a suit against the estate of a deceased person where no letters of administration or probate have been taken out, the court may appoint an administrator ad litem to protect the interests of the estate."


  • Sodhi, D., Latin Words & Phrases for Lawyers (New York: Law and Business Publications inc., 1980), page 23.

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