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Legal Terms that Start with "O"
- The solemn oath is a foundation of Western Jurisprudence and a necessity of our modern legal system, for it is the oath (and the potential violation of that oath) that gives a court power to prevent perjury (falsified testimony) and corruption of other evidence. Strangely, in some jurisdictions, not every paper filed with the court and not even all words spoken in the courtroom are "under oath" unless an oath was specifically administered by the judge or other officer of the court. If you doubt the truth of what the other side is saying and are unsure if they are "under oath", most courts will readily require such statements to be verified, i.e., made subject to the oath and thereby subject to the civil and criminal penalties for perjury.
- When the other party does something contrary to the rules of procedure or the rules of evidence, the offended party should state an objection to the Court, in which case the Court is obligated to rule on the objection, either sustaining it or overruling it.
- When time permits, objections should be made in writing, stating what was done that is objectionable, citing the law or rule that declares it objectionable, and moving the court to strike or prevent the objectionable act.
- Of course, in the midst of hearings or trial one must make objections verbally, however (unlike what we see in the movies and on TV, it is not enough to merely say, "Objection, your Honor!" Better practice will state in a speaking motion the nature of the objectionable act and, if it is not obvious, cite to the law or rule that declares it objectionable. For example, "Objection, your Honor. Counsel is leading his own witness!"
- See sustain and overrule.
- The responsibility to do something. An obligation may arise from a contract, i.e., from a promise to do something, or it may arise out of public policy, where a moral or ethical responsibility imposes the obligation.
- One to whom an obligation is owed, e.g., one who holds an unsatisfied promissory note by which an obligor has obliged himself to pay the obligee whatever amount is due pursuant to the note. A mortgagee (lender) is an obligee, i.e., someone to whom the mortgagor (borrower) owes money.
- One who owes an obligation to another, e.g., one who signs a promissory note promising to pay an obligee the amount due thereunder. A mortgagor (borrower) is an obligor, who owes the mortgagee (lender) money.
- The object of every lawsuit. Judges enter orders commanding people to do things. For example, an order may command the bailiff to take an attorney or his client into custody for contempt of court. An order may command a witness to appear for deposition. An order may command that one party owes another party a huge sum of money. An order may even command a judge to do something, as when an appellate court directs a trial judge to admit some evidence that was excluded during a trial. An order may relieve the parties from a stay or give the sheriff authority to enter a warehouse and take possession of something stored there. All the power of our courts is wielded through the entry of orders on the record of the court clerk.
- When an objection in court is disapproved, the judge will typically rule on the objection saying, "Overruled", which means the objection is a nullity, and the party against whom the objection was made may continue what he was doing, e.g., requiring a witness to answer the question.
- See sustain.
- An oxymoron is any unlikely combination of words, e.g., required willingness, punctual procrastinator, advanced mediocrity, or singular redundancy.