The FindLaw Legal Dictionary -- free access to over 8260 definitions of legal terms. Search for a definition or browse our legal glossaries.
1 : a formal written authorization to perform various acts and duties [a notary's ]
2 a : authority to act for, in behalf of, or in place of another
b : a task or matter entrusted to one as the agent for another
3 a : a group of persons directed to perform a duty
b usu cap
: a government agency [Federal Trade Commission] see also agency
c : a city council having legislative and executive functions
4 : an act of committing something [ of the crime]
5 : a fee paid to an agent or employee for transacting a piece of business or performing a service
: a percentage of the money received paid to the agent responsible for the business
Source: Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Law ©1996. Merriam-Webster, Incorporated. Published under license with Merriam-Webster, Incorporated.