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Latin: the importance of “legal” language

Latin is a lovely language. Here’s an example of the kind that graphic designers use as a placeholder where the actual text is going to go: “Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Maecenas non rutrum orci. Vestibulum nec justo nunc. Sed ornare, libero eu blandit tristique, turpis enim volutpat metus, posuere rutrum magna mi non mi. Nulla vitae est ut nunc fermentum laoreet. Mauris ac urna id urna elementum congue et sit amet neque. Maecenas porta neque massa, in pharetra nunc commodo ac. Class aptent taciti sociosqu ad litora torquent per conubia nostra, per inceptos himenaeos. Proin dictum urna leo, in aliquet magna pulvinar eu.”

Wills don’t need to be written in Latin, but they do need to be clearly written, unequivocal about what they mean. For example:

Robert Sr.’s will left all real estate to Robert Jr. except for a life estate in “our homestead located at Piscataqua Road, Dover, New Hampshire”, which was left to Robert Sr.’s second wife, Roberta.

Robert Jr. and Roberta sought a determination of whether the term “homestead” referred to all of Robert Sr.’s property on Piscataqua Road (including a house, over one hundred acres of land, and buildings used in the family business), or only to the house.

When the stepmother won, Robert Jr. bought her out and then sued Calivas failing to draft a will which incorporated the actual intent of Robert H. Simpson, Sr. to leave all his land to the plaintiff in fee simple. And won!

–  Simpson v. Calivas, a US case, as described above, here.

Describe your pictures with cool captions
We may speak different languages, yet we are all saying the same things. Just more or less clearly.

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