per se adv[Latin, by, of, or in itself]
1 : inherently, strictly, or by operation of statute, constitutional provision or doctrine, or case law [the transaction was illegal per se ] see also negligence per se at negligence nuisance per se at nuisance
2 : without proof of special damages or reference to extrinsic circumstances [defamatory statements that were actionable per se ] compare per quod
adj : being such inherently, clearly, or by operation of statute, constitutional provision or doctrine, or case law [it is clear that licensing of adult entertainment establishments is not a per se violation of the First Amendment "Club Southern Burlesque, Inc. v. City of Carrollton , 457 S.E.2d 816 (1995)"] [a per se conflict of interest]
Source: Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Law ©1996. Merriam-Webster, Incorporated. Published under license with Merriam-Webster, Incorporated.