Skip to main content
Find a Lawyer
Please enter a legal issue and/or a location
Begin typing to search, use arrow keys to navigate, use enter to select
FindLaw Legal Dictionary

The FindLaw Legal Dictionary -- free access to over 8260 definitions of legal terms. Search for a definition or browse our legal glossaries.



legal adj

[Latin legalis, from leg- lex law]
1 : of or relating to law or the processes of law [a question] [take action]
2 a : deriving authority from or founded on law [a tariff rate] [a government]
b : fulfilling the requirements of law [a voter]
c : having a status derived from law
: recognized as such by law [a certainty]
d : created by operation of esp. statutory law [ incompetence] [a presumption] compare conventional, judicial
e : established by law [the test for mental capacity]
3 : conforming to or permitted by law
: lawful [a referendum to make gambling ]
4 : recognized or made effective under principles of law as distinguished from principles of equity
: deriving from or existing or valid in law as distinguished from equity see also equity compare equitable
5 a : of, relating to, or having the characteristics of the profession of law or one of its members [a corporate department] [the community]
b : of or relating to the study of law [continuing education]
le·gal·ly adv

Source: Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Law ©1996. Merriam-Webster, Incorporated. Published under license with Merriam-Webster, Incorporated.

Copied to clipboard

Find a Lawyer

More Options