The Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service (Cafcass) represents children in family court cases in England. Cafcass was formed on 1st April 2001 as part of the Government’s commitment to supporting families and children. It brought together the services previously provided by the Family Court Welfare Service, the Guardian ad Litem Services and the Children’s divisions... Continue reading
The Canadian Legal Information Institute or CanLII is a free legal information research database covering case law from all Canadian courts, including the Supreme Court of Canada, federal courts, and the courts in all Canada’s provinces and territories, plus federal legislation and consolidated statutes and regulations of every jurisdiction in Canada. A companion website, CanLII Connects,... Continue reading
Also known as Keywords. Descriptive words or phrases used to categorise the subject matter of a case for indexing purposes. Usually presented at the top of the report in the form of a main, second and third heading, which may be followed by additional words or phrases, separated by dashes, describing the critical issues in... Continue reading
Latin maxim, meaning “let the buyer beware”. It refers to the idea that the onus is on the purchaser to check the quality of the goods or property which are the subject of a sale transaction, not on the seller to volunteer information. On its own, the word “caveat” refers to a warning or exception.
Latin for “to be made more certain”. A writ of certiorari is a prerogative remedy or order issued by the court in judicial review proceedings, bringing up and quashing the decision of a lower court or tribunal, by reason of an error of law “on the face of the record” (ie readily apparent from the... Continue reading
Another word for a beneficiary of a trust: the person entitled to an equitable, as opposed to a legal, ownership of trust assets. The full law French description is cestui a que use le feoffment fuit fait. Alternative short forms are cestui que use or cestui que vie.
Conditional Fee Agreement – also known as a “no win, no fee” agreement: a form of litigation funding whereby the fees charged by the claimant’s lawyers are only payable if the action succeeds. In some circumstances, these may be recoverable as costs from the losing party. Most solicitors entering into a CFA will also charge... Continue reading
Court order that sets out who should have responsibility for care of a child, who they should live with and how often they will see or have contact with each parent (see section 8 of the Children Act 1989, as amended by the Children and Families Act 2014). Such an order is generally made where... Continue reading
Every solicitor or solicitor’s firm (but not barristers) has two accounts: a client account and an office account. The office account is the firm’s own money to spend as it wants: eg payment of wages and other expenses (rent, electricity etc) and to the solicitors themselves. The client account represents a lot of relatively much... Continue reading
Collusion, in the context of litigation (particularly divorce litigation) is “an improper act done, or an improper refraining from doing an act, [with another party] for a dishonest purpose.” See Scott v Scott  P 52. Such a purpose may include the obtaining of a divorce based on a false presentation of the facts, eg to... Continue reading
An official government paper presented to Parliament, “by command of His/Her Majesty”, and given an official reference number. The reference number follows a prefix (Cd, Cmnd, Cm etc) which has changed over the years since it was introduced in 1870. 1 to 4222 (1833 – 18690) C 1 to 9550 (1870 – 1899) Cd 1... Continue reading
A qualified lawyer who can administer an oath, take an affidavit or attest a signature where this is required by the court or for a specific type of document. Administering oaths is a reserved legal activity, by virtue of Part 3 of the Legal Services Act 2007 (LSA), which means that only a qualified practising... Continue reading
The mistaken belief that cohabiting couples enjoy legal rights similar to those who are formally married or in a civil partnership. They don’t. There is no such thing as a “common law” wife or husband or marriage, no matter how long a couple may “live together as man and wife” or however one wants to... Continue reading
The Commonwealth Legal Information Institute or CommonLII is a free legal research database covering case law, legislation and other materials from all Commonwealth countries. It includes content from a number of smaller jurisdictions that do not have their own separate LIIs and are not covered by WorldLII. CommonLII also holds a database of PDFs from the... Continue reading
A conditional fee (sometimes called a contingent fee) arrangement is a fee for legal services in pursuing a claim which is only payable if and when the claim is successful and costs recovered. It is one of a number of ways in which an impecunious claimant, who cannot otherwise afford to pursue their case, can... Continue reading
Where there is a dispute over whether a case should be litigated in one jurisdiction or another, there is said to be a conflict of laws.
A printed index and digest of case names, subject matter, and judicial considerations of other cases and legislation, published by ICLR in cumulative volumes of up to five or ten years coverage. See Products for purchasing details.
Conduct that undermines or interferes with the administration of justice or which deliberately insults or breaches an order of a court. It is punishable, on “committal”, by imprisonment or a fine. The person who commits contempt is known as a “contemnor”. Examples of contempt of court include: Disobeying or ignoring a court order Taking photos... Continue reading
Latin maxim (“against who proffers”) expressing the rule that an ambiguous term in a contract should be construed in favour of the party against whom it is relied upon or asserted, rather than in favour of the person asserting or relying on it.
Copyright is an intellectual property right relating to a creative work, which generally belongs to the creator (author) of that work, but which can be assigned to another person (the holder of the copyright). The types of creative work to which copyright can attach (or in which it can ‘subsist’) are defined in section 1... Continue reading
An award of costs is a sum of money ordered by the court to be paid to one of the parties to litigation by another in respect of the expenses of managing the litigation. The costs may be assessed by the court or agreed between the parties. They cover lawyers’ fees and other expenses such... Continue reading
The Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme is a government funded scheme designed to compensate blameless victims of violent crime in Great Britain. It was established under the Criminal Injuries Compensation Act 1995 and is administered by the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA), who consider applications from victims or their families or dependants, and assess if and how... Continue reading
Alternative name for the prosecution in criminal cases brought in the name of the Queen or King, under the title Regina or Rex. Thus a case cited as R v Brown may be spoken about orally as “The Crown against Brown”. Most public criminal prosecutions in England and Wales are brought by the Crown Prosecution... Continue reading
The Crown Court is a senior court which holds trials of more serious criminal offences; deals with sentencing in cases where the defendant has either pleaded guilty already, or been convicted and referred for sentencing by a magistrate’s court because of the relative seriousness of the offence; hears appeals from magistrates’ courts. Most trials in... Continue reading
Independent public body headed by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) and charged with the management of criminal prosecutions in England and Wales. The CPS decides which cases that have been investigated by the police and other investigative organisations should be prosecuted. It determines the appropriate charges in more serious or complex cases, and advises... Continue reading
Cur adv vult or CAV are abbreviations for Curia advisari vult, which is Latin for “the court wished to be advised”. It is used in a law report to indicate that the court’s judgment was reserved, as opposed to being given extempore.