Glossary

  • ACAS

    Advisory Conciliation and Arbitration...
  • Abandonware

    Software which is no longer being maintained, released or supported by the...
  • Abet

    To counsel, procure or command someone to commit a...
  • Absolute Discharge

    This is when a court takes no further action against an offender, although their offence and discharge will appear on their criminal...
  • Absolute Interest

    The entitlement to the item of property which is not limited by any other person’s...
  • Abstract of Title

    This is a summary of all legal documents which relate to a...
  • Abuse of Process

    This is "something so unfair and wrong that the court should not allow a prosecutor to proceed with what is in all other respect a regular proceeding" (Hui Chi-Ming v...
  • Acceptance

    The unconditional agreement to an...
  • Accused

    The person who has allegedly committed a criminal...
  • Acknowledgement of service

    This must be filed by a defendant if they are unable to file their defence within a specified period or if they wish to dispute the jurisdiction of a...
  • Acoustic Shock

    This is where a sudden burst of sound can temporarily or even permanently damage the eardrum and cause excruciating...
  • Acquisition

    This is the purchase of one company by another without a merger...
  • Acquittal

    The discharge of a defendant following a verdict or direction of "not...
  • Act

    Act of Parliament - primary legislation enacted by...
  • Action

    Proceedings issued in the County or High Court. (Now known as...
  • Actus Reus

    The act of committing a...
  • Address for Service

    This is where one party will accept the delivery or service of legal...
  • Adjournment

    The temporary suspension of the hearing of a...
  • Adjudication

    Judgment or decision in a...
  • Administration order

    This is a court order which requires a debtor to pay money to the court, which then distributes it amongst any...
  • Administrative Court

    Part of the High Court which deals with Judicial...
  • Administrator

    A person appointed by the Court to manage the estate of a deceased...
  • Admissible

    (Evidence) which is allowed to be used in a...
  • Adoption Order

    The court order when a child is...
  • Adversarial

    The system of justice used in British courts for trying to get at the truth, based upon argument between two...
  • Adverse Possession

    This is the process which results in the acquisition of legal title of land, without actually paying for...
  • Advocate

    Someone (generally a Barrister or Solicitor) who represents a party in a Court...
  • Affidavit

    A written statement which is confirmed on oath or by...
  • Affirm

    Alternative to swearing a document on oath to promise that it is...
  • Agency Agreement

    This is an agreement which allows one party (the Agent) to sell products (goods or services) on behalf of another (the Principal) in return for commission...
  • Agent

    Someone who is appointed to act on behalf of another party, the...
  • Allocation questionnaire

    This is issued to all parties after a defence has been filed, and is used to decide which track the case will be allocated...
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)

    This is the collective term for the ways in which parties can settle civil disputes without the need for a formal court...
  • Ambulatory Will

    A will which can still be changed because the settlor is...
  • Annual General Meeting (AGM)

    A company must hold a meeting of shareholders once each calendar...
  • Annul

    To declare no longer...
  • Anton Piller Order

    This requires a defendant to allow a claimant’s solicitors to search the defendant's premises and remove all items covered by the order. These are now known as Search...
  • Appeal

    An application to a higher court for a review of the decision of a lower...
  • Appellant

    Person who instigates an...
  • Applicant

    The person who is bringing the proceedings to...
  • Arbitration

    The process of using an independent third party, agreed by both sides, to settle disputes without going to...
  • Articles of Association

    A document which is required to incorporate a UK...
  • Asbestosis

    Exposure to cancer-causing asbestos (in the...
  • Assent

    A formal document which is required when transferring ownership to a person who is entitled to the property following the death of the...
  • Assets

    Any property or rights which do not inlclude land or interest in...
  • Assisted Person

    A party to legal proceedings who is receiving legal...
  • Attachment of Earnings

    An order which directs a Debtor's employer to regularly deduct an amount from their earnings for payment to the...
  • Author

    The programmer (or their employer) of a software...
  • Authorised Share Capital

    Shares which are available to be...
  • Award

    The amount of damages assessed by a...
  • BSD Licence

    Berkeley Software Distribution Licence - a type of Open Source software licence with few...
  • Bail

    A Defendant's release from custody pending their next appearance in...
  • Bailiff

    County Court Officer who can serve Court documents and execute...
  • Bankrupt

    A debtor who, either upon voluntary petition or one invoked by their creditors, is judged legally...
  • Bankruptcy

    The state of being...
  • Bar

    The body to which all Barristers...
  • Barrister

    Legal professionals who have rights of audience before all...
  • Basic Charges

    General charges incurred for legal...
  • Basic Disclosure

    Some forms of employment require a Criminal Conviction Certificate, which will show all convictions held at national level which are not...
  • Bench Warrant

    A warrant issued by a judge for a defendant who is missing which requires them to be arrested and brought before...
  • Beneficiary

    A beneficiary is someone who stands to gain as a result of a bequest made in a will or who receives something from an...
  • Bequest

    A gift of Chattels or Assets by...
  • Bill Of Indictment

    A written statement of the charges against a defendant who is sent for trial to the Crown...
  • Bill of Costs

    A detailed statement of a party's...
  • Binary

    Executable program or a data...
  • Bind Over

    A court order which requires a person to carry out some...
  • Bona Fide

    In good...
  • Breach of Contract

    This occurs when a party to a contract fails to abide by the agreed...
  • Break Clause

    This is a clause which allows a tenant to end a lease at specific times during the period of the...
  • Brief

    Written instructions and history of a case which is sent to a...
  • Bullying

    This occurs when someone tries to intimidate, humiliate or undermine another...
  • Burden of Proof

    The standard of proof which must be shown in order to win a...
  • Business Name

    Sole Traders and Partnerships can either trade under their own names or have a separate name, known as a Business...
  • Calderbank Letter

    This is a letter making an offer of settlement prior to the case going to hearing, similar to a Part 36...
  • Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

    Some people have encountered problems with gas applicances on holiday - which can lead to illness and even...
  • Care Order

    This is an order which places a child in the care of the local...
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

    This occurs, often in the workplace, when the median nerve, which runs from the forearm into the hand, becomes pressed or squeezed at the...
  • Case Number

    A unique reference number which is allocated to each...
  • Caution

    Warning given by a Police...
  • Caveat Emptor

    This essentially means "buyer beware" - a principle which still stands in property...
  • Certificate of Title

    This is a document which certifies the legal ownership of...
  • Chambers

    Offices used by a barrister. Alternatively, a private Court from which the public are excluded in which a Judge may conduct certain...
  • Chancery Division

    A section of the High Court, divided between Chancery Chambers and Bankruptcy and Companies...
  • Charge

    Security for the payment of a debt upon sale of a...
  • Charging Order

    This is a charge imposed by the court on the debtor's property to secure payment of the sum that is due and also An order directing that a charge be registered at the Land Registry on property owned by a...
  • Chattel

    This refers to any property except freehold...
  • Child Maintenance

    Money due from a non-resident parent to the parent with whom the child...
  • Circuit Judge

    Circuit judges must be lawyers who have held a 'right of audience' for at least ten years, and must also have served either part-time as a recorder on criminal cases or full-time as district judges on civil cases before they can be...
  • Civil

    Matters concerning private rights as opposed to offences against the...
  • Civil Partner

    A member of a same-sex...
  • Claim

    Proceedings issued in the County or High Court. Previously known as an...
  • Claim Form

    Form on which a Claim is issued (previously known as a...
  • Claimant

    Person issuing a Claim (previously known as the...
  • Clean break

    This is where financial matters are agreed by the parties in full and final settlement and there is no ongoing financial arrangement between them either in terms of income or...
  • Click-Wrap Licence

    This is a licence for software either downloaded from a website or loaded from disk, where the licence terms are accepted on screen by following a "click to accept"...
  • Closed Source

    Software which does not allow its code to be manipulated by...
  • Co-Respondent

    A person joined as a party to...
  • Codicil

    A codicil is an addition or amendment to an existing...
  • Coexistence Agreement

    Trademark coexistence describes a situation in which two different enterprises use a similar or identical trademark to market a product or service without necessarily interfering with each other’s...
  • Collaborative Law

    A form of dispute resolution in which family lawyers and their clients agree in writing to reach a settlement without court...
  • Collective Agreement

    An agreement reached through negotiations between a trade union and an...
  • Comfort Letter

    A document which is issued to back up an agreement but which does not have any contractual...
  • Commissioner of Oaths

    Solicitors authorised by the Lord Chancellor to administer oaths and affirmations to a statement of...
  • Committal

    The procedure of directing the case to the Crown Court to be dealt with, following examination by the Magistrates of a case involving an indictable or either way...
  • Committal Order

    An order of the Court placing someone in...
  • Common Hold

    A form of freehold land ownership, as an alternative to long leasehold...
  • Common Law

    Law established by precedent from judicial...
  • Common Law Partner

    A partner who you live with but to whom you are not...
  • Commons Registration Search

    A search at the local authority to check that the property is not registered as common...
  • Community Punshment Order

    A sentence which requires a young person to complete unpaid community work for a period of 40-240...
  • Community Rehabilitation Order

    This is equivalent to a Supervision Order, but it's for young people aged...
  • Company Voluntary Agreement (CVA)

    This is a deal between an insolvent company and its...
  • Compensation

    Sum of money paid in respect of loss, breakage, hardship, inconvenience or personal...
  • Completion

    When the buyer of a property becomes the new owner of the...
  • Compromise Agreement

    This is an agreement which is entered into by an employee and employer, preventing an employee’s right to a claim against their...
  • Conciliation

    This is where disputing parties attempt to reach an agreement out of...
  • Concurrent Sentance

    A direction by a Court that a number of sentences of imprisonment should run at the same...
  • Concurrent User Licence

    A software licence which depends upon the number of people who use the software at any one...
  • Concurrent Writ

    This is a duplicate of an original...
  • Conditional Discharge

    A discharge of a convicted defendant without sentence on condition that they do not re-offend within a specified period of...
  • Conditional Fee Agreements

    See No Win No...
  • Conditional Fee Arrangement

    This is a contractual agreement for a case being pursued on a “no win no fee”...
  • Conditions

    Conditions form the basis of a contract - if one of them fails or is broken, the contract is...
  • Conduct Money

    Money paid to a witness in advance of the hearing of a case as compensation for time spent attending...
  • Confidentiality agreement

    An agreement made to protect confidential information in case it needs to be disclosed to another...
  • Conjoined Appeal

    This is when appeal claims are joined in...
  • Consecutive Sentance

    This is an order for a subsequent sentence of imprisonment to commence as soon as a previous sentence...
  • Consent Order

    An order which is negotiated and agreed by both parties and sanctioned by the...
  • Consideration

    Something which must be given by either side in a...
  • Constructive Dismissal

    When an employee is forced to resign because of an employer's...
  • Contempt of Court

    Disobedience or wilful disregard to the judicial...
  • Contingent Will

    A will which will only become effective if some condition is...
  • Contract

    This document will be signed by the person selling and the person buying the property and will be sent to their...
  • Contract Of Service

    A contract under which a person agrees to consider themselves an...
  • Contract for Service

    A contract with a person who is...
  • Contributory Negligence

    Partial responsibility of a claimant for the injury in respect of which they claim...
  • Conveyance

    The legal work which needs to be undertaken when buying or selling a...
  • Conviction

    To be found in violation of a law by a judge or...
  • Copyleft

    This term describes the practice of using copyright law to remove restrictions on distributing copies and modified versions of a work for others and requiring that the same freedoms be preserved in modified...
  • Copyright

    This protects material, such as literature, art, music, sound recordings, films and broadcasts from being copied without...
  • Corroboration

    Evidence by one person confirming that of another or supporting...
  • Costs orders

    An order in court proceedings determining who should pay for each party’s...
  • Counsel

    A...
  • Count

    An individual offence set out in an...
  • Counterclaim

    A claim made by a defendant against a claimant in an...
  • County Court

    Court dealing with civil...
  • County Court Judgment CCJ

    This is a judgment of a county court which orders a defendant to pay a sum of money to a...
  • Court

    Body with judicial...
  • Court Order

    The recorded decision of a judge, once he has heard and considered the evidence from all parties in the...
  • Court Room

    Place where cases are...