- Money paid to have a kidnapped person released.
- Sex with a woman, other than a wife, without her consent. But many states
have changed this basic definition to include sex with a minor (with or
without consent; also known as
statutory rape), sex with a man without his consent, or exempting men who
force their wives to have sex.
- Real property
- Immoveable property such as land or a building or an object that, though
at one time a
chattel, has become permanently affixed to land or a building.
- Rebuttable presumption
- Usually, every element of a case must be proven to a judge or a jury. The
exception is a "presumption", which means that if certain other facts are
proven, then another fact can be taken for granted by the judge (or jury). For
example, in some states, an adult caught having intercourse with a minor is
presumed as having known that the minor was under-age. Most presumptions are "rebuttable",
which means that the person against whom the presumption applies may present
evidence to the contrary, which then has the effect of nullifying the
presumption. This then deprives the person that tried to use the presumption
with the advantage of the "free" evidence and makes him present evidence to
support the fact which might have been proven by the presumption.
- Buying back. When a vendor later buys the property back. A right of
redemption gives the vendor the right to buy back the property. In some
jurisdictions where a
transfers title to the lender until the mortgage is paid off, the "buying
back" of the property is known as redemption.
- An informer; a person who has supplied the facts required for a criminal
prosecution or a civil suit. In criminal prosecutions in some states, this
would be indicated by the use of the expression
as in The State of California
Robert Smith v. George Doe.
- A right to future enjoyment or ownership of real property. The "left-over"
after property has been conveyed first to another party. A remainder interest
is what if left-over after a
has run its course. Contrary to a reversion, a remainder does not go to the
grantor or his (or her) heirs.
- Abbreviation for "reciprocal enforcement of maintenance orders" and the
name of the international system of recognition, registration and enforcement
of child and spousal support orders between countries which have agreed,
between themselves, to enforce each other's maintenance orders. Originally
created by England, the international REMO system now spreads over many
countries. In the USA, the system is known as UIFSA or URESA.
- This is the
consideration paid by a
tenant to a
in exchange for the exclusive use and enjoyment of land, a building or a part
of a building. Under normal circumstances, the rent is paid in money and at
regular intervals, such as the first of every month. The word has also come to
be used as a verb as in to "rent an apartment", although the proper legal term
would be to "lease an apartment."
- A legal action taken to reclaim goods which have been
- To abrogate or cancel a contract putting the parties in the same position
they would have been in had there been no
Rescission can occur in one of two ways: either a contract can be set aside
(rescinded) because of some defect in its formation (such as
undue influence) or it can be set aside by agreement by the parties, for
example if they reach a new agreement.
- Res gestae
- Latin for "things done." A peculiar rule, used mostly in criminal cases,
which allows hearsay if the statement is made during the excitement of the litigated
event. For example, the words "stick 'em up!" used during an armed robbery
would be admissible in
under the res gestae rule. So, too, would spontaneous statements made
by the defendant during or right after the crime. Some laws even allow res
gestae statements to be introduced in
in special kinds of prosecutions. For example, in child sexual abuse cases,
the statement made by a child to another person may be allowed as evidence
even though, technically, it offends the rule against hearsay.
This is to recognize the trauma of having a child testify in open court on the
subject of her or his abuse. Res gestae evidence
usually requires a voir dire
hearing before it is admissible unless the defense allows it to be put on the
trial record unchallenged.
- Res ipsa loquitur
- A word used in
tort to refer to situations where negligence
is presumed on the defendant since the object causing injury was in his or her
control. This is a presumption which can be rebutted by showing that the event
was an inevitable accident and had nothing to do with the defendant's
responsibility of control or supervision. An example of res ipsa loquitur
would be getting hit by a rock which flies off a passing dump truck. The event
itself imputes negligence (res ipsa loquitur) and can only be defeated
if the defendant can show that the event was a total and inevitable accident.
- Res judicata
- Latin: A matter which has already been conclusively decided by a court.
- The party that "responds to" a claim filed in court against them by a
The more common term is
The word is also used to refer to the party who wins at the first court level
but who must then respond to an appeal launched by the party that lost the
case at the first court level (upon appeal, this latter person is called the
- Restitutio in integrum
- Latin for restitution to the original position. In contract law, upon
breach of contract, the injured party may ask the court to reverse the
contract and revert the parties to their respective positions before the
contract was accepted. But if the court finds that restitutio in integrum
is not possible because of actions or events occurring since the date of
acceptance, then the court may order that damages be paid instead.
- Under ancient English common law, when a party enforced a court judgment
and then that judgment was overturned on appeal, the appellant could ask the
appeal court for "restitution", or financial compensation placing that
appellant in the same position as if the original legal decision had not been
enforced. A new strain of common law has also developed called "restitution",
closely associated with unjust enrichment, whereby a person is deprived of
something of value belonging to them, can ask a court to order "restitution".
The best example is asking a court to reverse or correct a payment made in
- Resulting trust
- A trust
that is presumed by the court from certain situations. Similar to a
constructive trust but for resulting trusts, the court presumes an
intention to create a trust; the law assumes that the property is not held by
the right person and that the possessor is only holding the property "in
trust" for the rightful owner. In
constructive trusts, the courts don't even bother with presuming an
intention; they simply impose a trust from the facts.
- A contract between a lawyer and his (or her) client, wherein the lawyer
agrees to represent and provide legal advice to the client, in exchange for
money. The signed retainer begins the client-lawyer relationship from which
flow many responsibilities and duties, primarily on the lawyer, including to
provide accurate legal advice, to monitor limitation dates and to not allow
any conflict of interest with the relationship with the client.
- A future interest left in a transferor or his (or her) heirs. A
reservation in a real property conveyance that the property reverts back to
the original owner upon the occurrence of a certain event. For example, Jim
gives Bob a building using the words "to Bob for life". Upon the death of Bob,
the property reverts back to Jim or to Jim's heirs. Differs from a remainder
in that a remainder takes effect by an act of the parties involved. A
reversion takes effect by operation of the law. Nor is a reversion a
"left-over" as is a remainder. Rather, it reverts the entire property.
- Right of first refusal
- A right given to a person to be the first person allowed to purchase a
certain object if it is ever offered for sale. The owner of this right is the
first to be offered the designated object if it is ever to be offered for
- Riparian rights
- Special rights of people who own land that runs into a river bank (a
"riparian owner" is a person who owns land that runs into a river). While not
an ownership right, riparian rights include the right of access to, and use of
the water for domestic purposes (bathing, cleaning and navigating). The extent
of these rights varies from country to country and may include the right to
build a wharf outwards to a navigable depth or to take emergency measures to
- Rule against perpetuities
- A common law
rule that prevents suspending the transfer of property for more then 21 years
or a lifetime plus 21 years. For example, if a will proposes the transfer of
an estate to some future date, which is uncertain, for either more than 21
years after the death of the testator or for the life of a person identified
in the will and 21 years, the transfer is void. Statute law exists in many
jurisdictions which supersedes the common law rule. For more information, see
the WWLIA article on the "Rule