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Lawsuits

  • pro tempore

    A referee or commissioner that temporarily replaces a judge; same as pro tem judge; from the Latin for "for the time being" or "temporarily."...

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  • proximate cause

    Something that in a natural and continuous sequence, unbroken by any independent cause, produces an event without which an injury would not have occurred....

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  • public assistance

    Benefits, like money or food stamps, to help people or families in need. Information on people that apply for certain kinds of public assistance (like Temporary Assistance to Needy Families, TANF) is ...

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  • public defender

    A lawyer appointed by the court, usually to represent a defendant in a criminal case that can't afford to hire a lawyer....

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  • public offense

    A crime. Compare to private or civil wrongs that violate "private laws," for example, a contract between 2 parties. The difference between civil/private and criminal/public wrongs is that public offen...

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  • public record

    A court record available for inspection by the general public. (Compare confidential record, sealed record.)...

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  • purge

    To remove inactive case records from court files....

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  • putative father

    The person said to be the father of a child but who has not yet been medically or legally declared to be the legal father. (See also genetic testing, legal parent, paternity.)...

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  • Qualified Medical Child Support Order (QMCSO)

    An order or judgment that provides for medical support for a child of a parent covered by a group health plan or provides for health benefit coverage for the child....

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  • Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO)

    An order or judgment issued by a court and approved by a pension plan, that divides a pension plan in order to make a fair division of property or to pay for child or spousal support....

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  • quash

    To make void, to vacate, to annul, to set aside. For example, to quash a subpoena means that the court will not enforce the subpoena because it has been voided or set aside....

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  • quiet title

    A case in which the ownership of real property is in dispute, and the court must decide who owns (or has title to) the property. To "quiet title" is to declare that a certain person is the legal owner...

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  • rap sheet

    A written summary of a person's criminal history....

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  • rebuttal

    Evidence presented at trial by 1 party in order to overcome evidence introduced by another party....

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  • recess

    A short break in a trial ordered by the judge. (See also adjournment; compare continuance.)...

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