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Glossary of Legal Terms
beginning with letter D
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damage Tweet Definition of damage Like Definition of damage on Facebook
noun 
  1. The abstract measure of something not being intact; harm.
The storm did a lot of to the area.
  1. (slang) cost, Cost or expense.
"What's the ?" he asked the waiter.
verb (damag, ing)
  1. To make something less intact or even destroy it; to harm or cause destruction.
Be careful not to any of the fragile items while unpacking them.
     
DD Tweet Definition of DD Like Definition of DD on Facebook
initialism 
  1. developmentally disabled
  2. designated driver
  3. Discharged Dead - official designation of a sailor killed in combat
  4. Dual Diagnosis
  5. Demand Draft
     
dead Tweet Definition of dead Like Definition of dead on Facebook
noun (pl=dead)
  1. (singular) Time when coldness, darkness, or stillness is most intense.
The of night. The of winter.
  1. (plural) Those who have died.
Have respect for the .
verb (dead, ed)
  1. (transitive) to prevent by disabling; stop
    • 1826: The Whole Works of the Right Rev. Edward Reynolds, Lord Bishop of Norwich, collected by Edward Reynolds, Benedict Riveley, and Alexander Chalmers. pp. 227. London: B. Holdsworth.
    • : "What a man should do, when finds his natural impotency him in spiritual works"
adjective (er, est)
  1. (notcomp) Not alive; lacking life; no longer living.
All of my grandparents are .
  1. (notcomp) (italbrac, Of another person) So hated by that they are absolutely ignored.
He is to me.
  1. (notcomp) Fully and completely motionless.
Come to a stop.
  1. Without emotion.
She stood with face and limp arms, unresponsive to my plea.
  1. (notcomp) (italbrac, Of a machine, device, or electrical circuit) Completely inactive; without power.
Ok, the circuit"s . Go ahead and cut the wire.
Now that the motor"s you can reach in and extract the spark plugs.
  1. (notcomp) broken, Broken or inoperable.
That monitor is ; don"t bother hooking it up.
  1. (notcomp) obsolete, Obsolete or no longer used or required.
There are several laws still on the books regulating where horses may be hitched.
Is this beer glass ?
  1. (notcomp) (sports) Not in play.
Once the ball crosses the foul line, it"s .
  1. (notcomp) (context, baseball, slang) An 1800s baseball term meaning a player who is tagged out.
adverb 
  1. exact, Exactly right.
He hit the target in the centre.
  1. (slang) very, Very, absolutely, extremely, suddenly.
She"s sexy.
He"s stupid.
I"m tired.
That"s sure!
     
decedent Tweet Definition of decedent Like Definition of decedent on Facebook
noun 
  1. (mainly US) A dead person.
     
decree Tweet Definition of decree Like Definition of decree on Facebook
noun 
  1. An edict or law.
(Decrees)
  1. (legal): The judicial decision in a litigated cause rendered by a court of equity.
  2. (legal): The determination of a cause in a court of admiralty, or a court of probate.
  • Note: It is accurate to use the word judgment for a decision of a court of law, and from a court of equity, although the former term now includes both.
verb (decree, d)
  1. To command by a decree.
     
decree nisi Tweet Definition of decree nisi Like Definition of decree nisi on Facebook
noun 
  1. a decree issued on a first petition for divorce; it becomes absolute at some later date unless cause is shown why it should not
     
deed Tweet Definition of deed Like Definition of deed on Facebook
noun 
  1. An action or act; something that is done.
I will punish whomever is responsible for this !
  1. A brave or noteworthy action; a feat or exploit.
The knight's deeds won the hearts of the people.
  1. Action or fact, as opposed to rhetoric or deliberation.
I have fulfilled my promise in word and in .
  1. A legal contract showing bond.
I inherited the to the house.
verb 
  1. (colloquial) To transfer real property by deed.
He deeded over the mineral rights to some fellas from Denver.
     
de facto Tweet Definition of de facto Like Definition of de facto on Facebook
noun 
  1. (Australia) A legally undeclared spouse. Usually spelled defacto.
adjective 
  1. actual, Actual.
  2. virtual, Virtual, being such in effect or essence (rather than literally in fact) though not formally or wholly taken for granted, as opposed to de jure.
  3. (context, politics, military) Of a political or military leader, exercising power without being legally established.
  • Although the United States currently has no official language, it is largely monolingual with English being the national language.
    1. (context, computing) Of hardware or software, being widely used, but not conforming to a standard.
adverb 
  1. in reality
     
defalcate Tweet Definition of defalcate Like Definition of defalcate on Facebook
verb (defalcat, ing)
  1. (transitive) To misappropriate funds; to embezzle.
     
defalcation Tweet Definition of defalcation Like Definition of defalcation on Facebook
noun 
  1. The act of cancelling part of a claim by deducting a smaller claim which the claimant owes to the defendant.
  2. embezzlement
     
default Tweet Definition of default Like Definition of default on Facebook
noun 
  1. The condition of failing to meet an obligation.
You may cure this default by paying the full amount within a week.
  1. A loss incurred by failing to compete.
The team's three losses include one default.
  1. (computing) A value used when none has been given. Often used attributively, e.g., default value.
If you don't specify a number of items, the default is 1.
verb 
  1. To fail to meet an obligation.
You were required to make a payment on the first of the month. You have defaulted.
  1. To lose a competition by failing to compete.
If you refuse to wear a proper uniform, you will not be allowed to compete and will default this match.
  1. (computing) To assume a value when none was given.
If you don't specify a number of items, it defaults to 1.
     
defeasance Tweet Definition of defeasance Like Definition of defeasance on Facebook
noun 
  1. , the rendering void of a contract or deed; an annulment
     
defeat Tweet Definition of defeat Like Definition of defeat on Facebook
noun 
  1. The act of defeating or being defeated
verb 
  1. (transitive) To overcome in battle or contest
  2. (transitive) To destroy, ruin, undo, lay waste to
     
defend Tweet Definition of defend Like Definition of defend on Facebook
verb 
  1. To ward off an attacker; to protect one's assets, or allies.
  2. (sports) To focus one's energies and talents on preventing opponents from scoring, as opposed to focusing on scoring.
     
defendant Tweet Definition of defendant Like Definition of defendant on Facebook
noun 
  1. :In civil proceedings, the party responding to the complaint; one who is sued and called upon to make satisfaction for a wrong complained of by another.
  2. :In criminal proceedings, the accused.
     
de jure Tweet Definition of de jure Like Definition of de jure on Facebook
adjective (pos=de jure, -)
  1. By right.
  2. In accordance with the law.
     
delict Tweet Definition of delict Like Definition of delict on Facebook
noun 
  1. A wrongful act. A tort.
  2. The branch of law dealing in delicts.
     
delivery Tweet Definition of delivery Like Definition of delivery on Facebook
noun 
  1. The act of conveying something
The was completed by four.
  1. The item which has been conveyed
Your is on the table.
  1. The act of giving birth
The was painful.
  1. (baseball) A pitching motion
''His has a catch in it.
  1. (baseball) A thrown pitch
''Here is the ; ... strike three!
  1. The manner of speaking
The actor's was flawless.
  1. (medicine) administration of a drug
Drug system.
  1. (curling) The process of throwing a stone
adjective 
  1. The place where a delivery happens
The room is just down the hall.
  1. The person who performs a delivery
The man is here.
     
demise Tweet Definition of demise Like Definition of demise on Facebook
noun 
  1. The conveyance or transfer of an estate, either in fee for life or for years, most commonly the latter.
  2. Transmission by formal act or conveyance to an heir or successor; transference; especially, the transfer or transmission of the crown or royal authority to a successor.
  3. death, Death.
     
demur Tweet Definition of demur Like Definition of demur on Facebook
noun 
  1. Stop; pause; hesitation as to proceeding; suspense of decision or action; scruple.
All my demurs but double his attacks; At last he whispers, ``Do; and we go snacks.'' - w:Alexander Pope, Alexander Pope
She agreed to his request without .
verb (demur, r, ing)
  1. (context, intransitive, obsolete) To linger; to stay; to tarry
"Yet durst not nor abide upon the camp. - Nicols?
  1. (intransitive) To delay; to pause; to suspend proceedings or judgment in view of a doubt or difficulty; to hesitate; to put off the determination or conclusion of an affair.
Upon this rub, the English embassadors thought fit to . - Hayward?
  1. (intransitive) To scruple or object; to take exception; to oppose; to balk
I to that statement.
The personnel demurred at the management's new scheme.
  1. (context, intransitive, law) To interpose a demurrer. See demurrer.
  2. (intransitive) To balk; to oppose.
  3. (context, transitive, obsolete) To suspend judgment concerning; to doubt of or hesitate about
The latter I , for in their looks Much reason, and in their actions, oft appears. - w:John Milton, John Milton
  1. (context, transitive, obsolete) To cause delay to; to put off
He demands a fee, And then demurs me with a vain delay. - Quarles?
     
demurrer Tweet Definition of demurrer Like Definition of demurrer on Facebook
noun 
  1. someone who demurs or objects
  2. (Law) A stop or pause by a party to an action, for the judgment of the court on the question, whether, assuming the truth of the matter alleged by the opposite party, it is sufficient in law to sustain the action or defense, and hence whether the party resting is bound to answer or proceed further.
     
denial Tweet Definition of denial Like Definition of denial on Facebook
noun 
  1. The negation in logic
The denial of "There might be X" is the null, "False, there is no X."
  1. A refusal to comply with a request.
Every time we asked for an interview we got a denial.
  1. An assertion of untruth
The singer has issued a sweeping denial of all the rumors.
  1. Refusal to believe a problem exists
We couldn't break through his denial about being alcoholic.
  • Suzanne Fields wrote: "Denial" came out of the therapyspeak prevalent in the middle of the 20th century, especially as it was applied to confronting the reality of mortality. It was popularized as the first stage of grief, and quickly expanded to include refusal to confront any bad news or disturbing ideas. http://www.washtimes.com/op-ed/20070211-102908-5463r.htm
     
deponent Tweet Definition of deponent Like Definition of deponent on Facebook
noun 
  1. (legal): A witness; especially one who gives information under oath, in a deposition concerning facts known to him or her.
  2. A deponent verb
adjective 
  1. In Latin, a characteristic indicating that a verb has passive form (that is, conjugates like the passive voice), but has an active meaning. (Such verbs, originally reflexive, are considered to have laid aside their passive meanings.) Examples include sequi and loqui.
     
derelict Tweet Definition of derelict Like Definition of derelict on Facebook
noun 
  1. Abandoned property; a ship abandoned at sea.
  2. An abandoned or forsaken person; an outcast.
  • 1911: A rather pathetic figure, the Lady Frances, a beautiful woman, still in fresh middle age, and yet, by a strange chance, the last of what only twenty years ago was a goodly fleet. " Arthur Conan Doyle, "The Disappearance of Lady Frances Carfax" (Norton 2005, p.1364)
    1. A negligent person.
adjective 
  1. Abandoned, forsaken; (of ship) abandoned at sea; dilapidated, neglected.
There was a ship on the island.
  1. Negligent in performing a duty.
     
dereliction Tweet Definition of dereliction Like Definition of dereliction on Facebook
noun 
  1. willful neglect of one's duty
The new soldier did not clean his cabin and was scolded for and disobedience.
What he did was a terrible of duty.
  1. the act of abandoning something, or the state of being abandoned
     
descent Tweet Definition of descent Like Definition of descent on Facebook
noun 
  1. An instance of descending
We climbed the mountain with difficulty, but the was easier.
  1. A way down.
We had difficulty in finding the correct .
  1. A sloping passage or incline.
The into the cavern was wet and slippery.
  1. lineage, Lineage or hereditary derivation
Our guide was of Welsh .
  1. A drop to a lower status or condition.
After that, the holiday went into a steep .
     
desertion Tweet Definition of desertion Like Definition of desertion on Facebook
noun (Plural: desertions)
  1. The act of desert, deserting.
     
determination Tweet Definition of determination Like Definition of determination on Facebook
noun 
  1. The act of determining, or the state of being determined.
  2. Bringing to an end; termination; limit.
  3. Direction or tendency to a certain end; impulsion.
  4. The quality of mind which reaches definite conclusions; decision of character; resoluteness.
  5. (countable) The state of decision; a judicial decision, or ending of controversy.
  6. (countable) That which is determined upon; result of deliberation; purpose; conclusion formed; fixed resolution.
  7. A flow, rush, or tendency to a particular part; as, a determination of blood to the head.
  8. (countable) The act, process, or result of any accurate measurement, as of length, volume, weight, intensity, etc.; as, the determination of the ohm or of the wave length of light; the determination of the salt in sea water, or the oxygen in the air.
  9. The act of defining a concept or notion by giving its essential constituents.
  10. The addition of a differentia to a concept or notion, thus limiting its extent; -- the opposite of generalization.
  11. The act of determining the relations of an object, as regards genus and species; the referring of minerals, plants, or animals, to the species to which they belong; classification; as, I am indebted to a friend for the determination of most of these shells.
     
determine Tweet Definition of determine Like Definition of determine on Facebook
verb (determin, ing)
  1. To set the limits of.
  2. To ascertain definitely; to figure out.
     
devise Tweet Definition of devise Like Definition of devise on Facebook
noun 
  1. the act of leaving real property in a will
  2. such a will, or a clause in such a will
  3. the real property left in such a will
verb (devis, ing)
  1. (transitive) To use the intellect to plan or design something.
  2. (transitive) To leave property in a will.
     
devisee Tweet Definition of devisee Like Definition of devisee on Facebook
noun 
  1. the person or entity to whom property is devised in a will
     
disability Tweet Definition of disability Like Definition of disability on Facebook
noun (disabilities)
  1. State of being disabled; deprivation or want of ability; absence of competent physical, intellectual, or moral power, means, fitness, and the like.
Grossest faults, or disabilities to perform what was covenanted. -Milton.
Chatham refused to see him, pleading his . -Bancroft.
  1. Want of legal qualification to do a thing; legal incapacity or incompetency.
The disabilities of idiocy, infancy, and coverture. -Abbott.
  1. The combination of a physical or intellectual impairment of an individual and the social attitudes and environment that prevents a person from living a full, normal life or from performing his/her normal job.
     
disbar Tweet Definition of disbar Like Definition of disbar on Facebook
verb (disbarr, ing)
  1. To expel from the bar, or the legal profession; to deprive (an attorney, barrister, or counselor) of his or her status and privileges as such.
     
disclaim Tweet Definition of disclaim Like Definition of disclaim on Facebook
verb 
  1. To renounce all claim to deny; ownership of, or responsibility for; to disown; to disavow; to reject.
  2. To deny, as a claim; to refuse.
  3. To relinquish or deny having a claim; to disavow another's claim; to decline accepting, as an estate, interest, or office.
     
disclosure Tweet Definition of disclosure Like Definition of disclosure on Facebook
noun 
  1. The act of reveal
    1. Verb, revealing something.
     
discontinue Tweet Definition of discontinue Like Definition of discontinue on Facebook
verb 
  1. To stop a process; especially as regards commercial productions; to stop producing, making, or supplying something.
They plan to that design.
     
disinherit Tweet Definition of disinherit Like Definition of disinherit on Facebook
verb 
  1. (transitive) To exclude from inheritance; to disown.
     
dismiss Tweet Definition of dismiss Like Definition of dismiss on Facebook
verb (dismisses, dismissing, dismissed) (transitive)
  1. To discharge; to end the employment or service of.
The company dismissed me after less than a year.
  1. To order to leave.
The soldiers were dismissed after the parade.
  1. To dispel; to rid one's mind of.
He dismissed all thoughts of acting again.
  1. To reject; to refuse to accept
The court dismissed the case.
  1. (cricket) To get a batsman out.
He was dismissed for 99 runs.
     
disorderly Tweet Definition of disorderly Like Definition of disorderly on Facebook
adjective 
  1. not in order; causing disorder; unorganized
The larder is so disorderly, I can't even find the potatoes.
I can't stand disorderly people.
     
dissent Tweet Definition of dissent Like Definition of dissent on Facebook
noun (dissents)
  1. Disagreement with the ideas, doctrines, decrees, etc. of a political party, government or religion.
  2. An act of disagreeing with, or deviating from, the views and opinions of those holding authority.
verb 
  1. To disagree with.
     
dissolve Tweet Definition of dissolve Like Definition of dissolve on Facebook
noun 
  1. cinematography a film punctuation in which there is a gradual transition from one scene to the next
verb (dissolv, ing)
  1. (chemistry): to disintegrate by immersing it into a liquid
  2. to disperse, to drive to parts (a group of persons)
  3. cinematography shift from one shot to another by having the former fade out as the latter fades in
     
distrain Tweet Definition of distrain Like Definition of distrain on Facebook
verb 
  1. To seize somebody's property in place of, or to force, payment of a debt.
     
divest Tweet Definition of divest Like Definition of divest on Facebook
verb 
  1. (archaic) To remove all of one's clothing; to strip.
  2. (context, archaic, figurative) To strip, deprive or dispossess oneself of something (such as a right, passion, privilege or prejudice).
You shall never my right to free speech.
When I wake up, I make a point to myself all of my prejudices, ready to start the day.
     
dividend Tweet Definition of dividend Like Definition of dividend on Facebook
noun 
  1. (arithmetic) A number or expression that is to be divided by another. Eg. in "42 í· 3" the dividend is the 42.
  2. (finance) A pro rata payment of money by a company to its shareholders, usually made periodically (eg. quarterly or annually).
     
divorce Tweet Definition of divorce Like Definition of divorce on Facebook
noun 
  1. The legal dissolution of a marriage.
Richard obtained a from his wife some years ago, but hasn't returned to the dating scene.
  1. A separation of connected things.
The Civil War split between Virginia and West Virginia was a based along cultural and economic, as well as geographic, lines.
verb (divorc, ing)
  1. (transitive) To legally dissolve a marriage between two people.
A ship captain can marry couples, but cannot them.
  1. (transitive) To end one's own marriage in this way.
Lucy divorced from Steve when she discovered that he had been unfaithful.
  1. (transitive) To separate something that was connected.
The radical group voted to itself from the main faction and start an independent movement.
  1. (intransitive) To obtain a legal divorce.
Edna and Simon divorced last year; he got the house, and she retained the business.
     
docket Tweet Definition of docket Like Definition of docket on Facebook
noun 
  1. a schedule of cases awaiting action in a court
  2. a short entry of the proceedings of a court; the register containing them; the office containing the register
  3. an agenda of things to be done
  4. a ticket or label fixed to something, showing its contents or directions to its use
     
domain Tweet Definition of domain Like Definition of domain on Facebook
noun 
  1. A geographic area owned or controlled by a single person or organization.
  2. A sphere of influence.
  3. A group of related items, topics, or subjects.
  4. (math) The set of all possible mathematical entities (points) where a given function is defined.
  5. (context, computing, Internet) Any Domain Name System, DNS domain name, particularly one which has been delegate, delegated and has become representative of the delegated domain name and it's subdomain, subdomains
    • BIND 9 Administrator Reference Manual (9.3.2), Copyright © 2004, 2005 Internet Systems Consortium, Inc. ("ISC"), Copyright © 2000-2003 Internet Software Consortium, http://www.bind9.net/manual/bind/9.3.2/Bv9ARM.ch01.html
    • :Every name in the DNS tree is a , even if it is terminal, that is, has no subdomains.
      1. (context, computing, internet) A collection of Domain Name System, DNS or DNS-like domain name, domain names consisting of a delegate, delegated domain name and all its subdomain, subdomains
      2. (computing) A collection of information having to do with a , the computer, computers named in the , and the network on which the computers named in the reside
      3. (computing) The collection of computers identified by a 's domain name, domain names
      4. (context, biology, taxonomy) In the w:Three-domain system, three-domain system, the highest rank in the classification of organisms, above kingdom; in other taxonomic systems, a similarly high rank
      5. (context, biology, taxonomy) In the three-domain system, one of three taxon, taxa at that rank: (Bacteria, Archaea, and Eukaryota)
     
domicile Tweet Definition of domicile Like Definition of domicile on Facebook
noun 
  1. A home or residence.
    The call to jury duty was sent to my legal ; too bad I was on vacation at the time.
     
donor Tweet Definition of donor Like Definition of donor on Facebook
noun 
  1. One who donates typically money.
     
Double Jeopardy Tweet Definition of Double Jeopardy Like Definition of Double Jeopardy on Facebook
noun double, Double jeopardy, Jeopardy
  1. A round of questioning or other situation where the possible gains and/or losses from choices are magnified.
    • 1988 July, Steven E. de Souza, w:Die Hard, Die Hard, 20th Century Fox
    • : John McClane?: Sorry Hans, wrong guess. Would you like to go for where the scores can really change?
    • 1999, Optimizing Network Traffic, Notes from the Field, volume 3, Microsoft Press
    • : Specifically, if after all this travel the application is inefficiently designed, the process gets into double jeopardy, where the scores can really change.
    • 2000 April, Edward Bear, The Seven Deadly Needs, pages 87-88, Health Communications
    • : We may now be ready for the round. Now for the next question
     
dower Tweet Definition of dower Like Definition of dower on Facebook
noun 
  1. that part of a deceased's property provided to his widow
  2. property given by a woman to her husband at marriage
verb to dower
  1. to give a dower or dowry
  2. to endow
     
draconian Tweet Definition of draconian Like Definition of draconian on Facebook
adjective 
  1. Very severe, oppressive or strict.
The despot chose a punishment for the revolutionary.
The Nazi regime was a regime.
     
duress Tweet Definition of duress Like Definition of duress on Facebook
noun 
  1. Being constrained by threat.
     

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