Glossary of Legal Terms N
A B C D E F G H I J K L M O P Q R S T U V W
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NEGLIGENCE: failure to use that degree of care which a reasonable person would use under the same circumstances.
NEXT FRIEND: one acting without formal appointment as guardian for benefit of minor or incompetent plaintiff and who is not party to the lawsuit.
NO BILL: grand jury's notation on written indictment indicating insufficient evidence was found to indict.
NO-CONTEST CLAUSE: language in a will providing that a person who makes a legal challenge to the will's validity will be disinherited.
"NO-FAULT" PROCEEDING: civil case in which claim is adjudicated without finding of error or fault.
NOL PROS: abbreviation of nolle prosequi.
NOLLE PROSEQUI (NAHL ee PROS eh KWEE: "I do not choose to prosecute." Decision by prosecutor or plaintiff not to go forward with an action. Called "nol pros" for short.
NOLO CONTENDERE (NO LO con TEN deh ree): criminal defendant's plea, whereby he/she accepts punishment without admission of guilt. Also called no contest.
NOMINAL PARTY: one joined as a party or defendant in a lawsuit because the technical rules of pleading require his/her presence in the record.
NON COMPOS MENTIS (non COM pos MENT iss): not of sound mind.
NON OBSTANTE VERDICTO (non ob STANT ee ver eh DICK toh): "Notwithstanding the verdict." Verdict entered by judge contrary to jury's verdict.
NON PROSEQUITUR (non preh SEK wit tur): judgment entered when plaintiff, at any stage of proceedings, fails to prosecute his/her action. Called "non pros" for short.
NON PROS: abbreviation for non prosequitur
NONFEASANCE: failure to act when duty required. Compare malfeasance and misfeasance.
NOTICE: formal notification to a party that a civil lawsuit has been filed against him/her. Also, any form of notification of legal proceeding.
NUISANCE: offensive, annoying, unpleasant, or obnoxious thing or practice that interferes with use or enjoyment of property.
NUNIC PRO TUNC: "Now for then." Action applied to acts which should have been completed at an earlier date than actually were, with the earlier date listed as the completion date.
NUNCUPATIVE WILL (nun KYOO puh tive): an oral will.