from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Law based on judicial decision and precedent rather than on statutes.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Law or system of laws established based on judicial precedent rather than on statutory laws created by legislation.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a system of jurisprudence based on judicial precedents rather than statutory laws
  • n. (civil law) a law established by following earlier judicial decisions


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • However, Ms. Rosato, rest assured that if there is case law that governs this type of trickery, my law clerks will find it.


  • There was an irony here: Cheney and others on his staff had pushed hard to turn the presidency into a quasi-monarchical office and in so doing had ended up creating case law and precedent that would serve as an important brake on presidential powers for the foreseeable future.

    The Longest War

  • Anthropolo - gists have demonstrated that laws of precedent operate in simple societies, and legal historians have traced the application of case law in inter alia Semitic and Jewish law, under the code of Hammurabi, in Islamic law, in the systems of China and Japan before the impact of Western influence.


  • Perhaps, however, the main argument which has been mounted against legal precedent based on case law is that decisions should always be based upon laws already declared by legisla - tive power and should not be restricted by reference to decisions of judges on particular cases.


  • Though there are differences in attitudes and techniques, J.P. Dawson concludes that there is a close resemblance between the adminis - tration of case law in Germany and the United States,


  • While this was only a local ruling, the definition of bipolar disorder as a physical illness-a neurobiological disorder that affects the physical and chemical structure of the brain-is one that may be used as illustrative case law as similar cases emerge in other jurisdictions.

    The Ups and Downs of Raising a Bipolar Child

  • Though theoretically many a precedent could be “dis tinguished” because its “material” facts differed from those of the instant case, the handling of case law is an art partly learned in the course of practice and partly dependent on judicial temperament and placing in the judicial hierarchy.



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