What is POFP?

Why do lawyers refer to long documents as briefs and
18-year olds as infants? Why do they use so much Latin when so few of their
clients are Ancient Romans? Is it a conspiracy?

Party of the First Part has the answers! Check out the Website for the
Legalese Hall of Shame; a glossary of legal words linked to Adam Freedman's
columns; tips on writing legal documents in plain English; and more!

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Word of the Week


A very old type of lawsuit to recover property (or the value of property) that was wrongly taken away. The person who takes your property is said to have "converted" it to his own use; sometimes, the action of trover is referred to as "trover and conversion." Trover is an archaic Anglo-French word meaning "to find" -- in modern French it's trouver. In English common law, the plaintiff in a trover case was required to plead that he lost his property and that the defendant had happened upon it.

You can still bring a case for trover in state court. Or at least, there are legal form companies that will sell you pre-printed trover complaints.