Thursday, December 18, 2003

A glossary of legal terms

When I was a young man, every month I took the multiple choice vocabulary quiz in my mom's Reader's Digest, in the section called, "It Pays to Increase Your Word Power" (or something like that).

Now, for whatever reason, the Virginia judiciary website has posted this glossary of terms used in court.

It includes some but not all of the words that sound strange to some out-of-state lawyers - motion for judgment, grounds of defense, demurrer, special plea in bar, motion to crave oyer. The first time I saw a motion craving oyer, I burst out laughing, thinking what are they doing to me now? I had carefully alleged a breach of contract without including any mention of the bad contract terms, and here was this motion blowing the whistle on me for doing just that! What a great concept, I thought, I need to file some of these myself, and so I have.


emory said...

hey steve- where can I read more about this crave oyer? Not in the glossary...

Steve Minor said...

I'm not sure where is the best source, but a motion craving oyer usually says something like this -

The defendant moves the Court to require plaintiff to produce and incorporate into his pleadings all writings containing the representations on which his claims are based, so that these documents may be properly considered in determining whether a cause of action has been pled.