Latin Legal Terms


Causa – this legal term has three different meanings:
- As a cause, motive or interest. The word is used in the phrase “cause privata’, which means “in private interest”. It is the opposite of “cause publica”, which means in public interest. Other related terms are:
1) Causa causans – this legal term is used in Tort lawsuits, where it means “ a primary cause” – i.e. the immediate, direct cause that has lead to damages. For example, this could be caused fire in the house, which has burned it down.
2) Causa Sine Qua Non – this legal term means which means “an indispensable cause or condition”.
3) Causa justa – this legal term means “legally sufficient cause”, which is legal ground for action, for example in the Litigation procedure. The term with opposite meanings is “causa fata”, which means “a false cause”.
- As a case at law, court case, law-suit. Within this meaning, the word is used in couple phrases:
1) “Causam dicere”, which means “I defend before the court” and expresses the legal work which lawyers do.
* It should be noted that being legal practitioners, bona-fide lawyers and attorneys-at-law do not practice their job for free. Legal advice and protection of people’s interests is paid as any other type of job – including the legal consultations and legal representation. The efforts which lawyers put in proper performance of their legal activities should be respected and valued by the people who seek their help. The same situation occurs when you visit a doctor – you pay for consultation and for eventual medical treatment.
2) “Nemo judex in sua causa”, which means that nobody should act as a judge in their own legal suit. This legal principle details the independence of the judge from the parties.
3) “Causam tenere”, which means “I win the court case”. The opposite expression is “causam perdere” – I lose the case.
- As something done on account of; for the sake of somebody.

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Bear that none of the listings on this dictionary and its explanations does not represent legal advice, and should not be considered applicable to any individual case or legal suit. All the definitions and interpretations have been stipulated with a theoretical purpose only to deliver more concrete information to the visitor of the website about the term or phrase itself.