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LEGAL TERMS

FORM INTERROGATORIES

Printed or 'canned' sets of questions that one party in a lawsuit asks an opposing party. Form interratories cover the issues commonly encountered in the kind o... (more...)
Printed or 'canned' sets of questions that one party in a lawsuit asks an opposing party. Form interratories cover the issues commonly encountered in the kind of lawsuit at hand. For example, lawyers' form books have sets of interrogatories designed for contract disputes, landlord-tenant cases and many others. Form interrogatories are often supplemented by questions written by the lawyers and designed for the particular issues in the case.

EXCULPATORY CLAUSE

A provision in a lease that absolves the landlord from responsibility for all damages, injuries or losses occurring on the property, including those caused by t... (more...)
A provision in a lease that absolves the landlord from responsibility for all damages, injuries or losses occurring on the property, including those caused by the landlord's actions. Most states have laws that void exculpatory clauses in rental agreements, which means that a court will not enforce them.

REAL ESTATE

Land and the property permanently attached to it, such as buildings, houses, stationary mobile homes, fences and trees. In legalese, real estate is also called ... (more...)
Land and the property permanently attached to it, such as buildings, houses, stationary mobile homes, fences and trees. In legalese, real estate is also called real property.

EXPRESS WARRANTY

A guarantee about the quality of goods or services made by a seller, such as 'This item is guaranteed against defects in construction for one year.' Most expres... (more...)
A guarantee about the quality of goods or services made by a seller, such as 'This item is guaranteed against defects in construction for one year.' Most express warranties come directly from the manufacturer or are included in the sales contract. If you want to hold the seller to an oral guarantee, it's best to get it in writing or have witnesses to the guarantee so that it doesn't come down to your word against the seller's if a problem arises.

REFORMATION

The act of changing a written contract when one of the parties can prove that the actual agreement was different than what's written down. The changes are usual... (more...)
The act of changing a written contract when one of the parties can prove that the actual agreement was different than what's written down. The changes are usually made by a court when both parties overlooked a mistake in the document, or when one party has deceived the other.

PERMANENT RESIDENT

A non-U.S. citizen who has been given permission to make his or her permanent home in the United States. If you acquire permanent residence, you will be issued ... (more...)
A non-U.S. citizen who has been given permission to make his or her permanent home in the United States. If you acquire permanent residence, you will be issued a green card to prove it. The terms permanent resident and 'green card holder' mean exactly the same thing. You cannot be a permanent resident without a green card and you cannot have a green card without being a permanent resident. As a permanent resident, you may travel as much as you like, but your place of residence must be the United States and you must keep that residence on a permanent basis. If you leave the United States and stay away for more than a year, you risk losing your green card.

NET LEASE

A commercial real estate lease in which the tenant regularly pays not only for the space (as he does with a gross lease) but for a portion of the landlord's ope... (more...)
A commercial real estate lease in which the tenant regularly pays not only for the space (as he does with a gross lease) but for a portion of the landlord's operating costs as well. When all three of the usual costs--taxes, maintenance and insurance--are passed on, the arrangement is known as a 'triple net lease.' Because these costs are variable and almost never decrease, a net lease favors the landlord. Accordingly, it may be possible for a tenant to bargain for a net lease with caps or ceilings, which limits the amount of rent the tenant must pay. For example, a net lease with caps may specify that an increase in taxes beyond a certain point (or any new taxes) will be paid by the landlord. The same kind of protection can be designed to cover increased insurance premiums and maintenance expenses.

RESTRAINT ON ALIENATION

A provision in a deed or will that attempts to restrict ownership of the property -- for example, selling your house to your daughter with the provision that it... (more...)
A provision in a deed or will that attempts to restrict ownership of the property -- for example, selling your house to your daughter with the provision that it never be sold to anyone outside the family. These provisions are generally unenforceable.

RUNNING WITH THE LAND

A phrase used in property law to describe a right or duty that remains with a piece of property no matter who owns it. For example, the duty to allow a public b... (more...)
A phrase used in property law to describe a right or duty that remains with a piece of property no matter who owns it. For example, the duty to allow a public beach access path across waterfront property would most likely pass from one owner of the property to the next.

SAMPLE LEGAL CASES

Port-A-Weld, Inc. v. Padula & Wadsworth Construction, Inc.

Padula was the general contractor on a project known as the West Central Bus Complex, which was owned by the School Board of Broward County. Port-A-Weld was a subcontractor hired by Padula to build metal pan stairs and other steel work in the complex for $150,000. Port-A- ...

Lincoln Associates & Construction, Inc. v. Wentworth Construction Company, Inc.

LINCOLN ASSOCIATES & CONSTRUCTION, INC., and Guarantee Insurance Company, Petitioners, v. WENTWORTH CONSTRUCTION COMPANY, INC., and Summit Holdings-Claims Center and Jose Armando Mejia, Respondents. ... District Court of Appeal of Florida, First ...

Heine v. Parent Construction, Inc.

This appeal arises from Parent Construction, Inc.'s construction of a home for Earl and Jennie Heine and the subsequent claims of breach of contract and construction defects. In the final judgment, the trial court found that Parent Construction was due the final $36,825.46 ...