Dictionary of Law

option :: legal definition

Option - n. a right to purchase property or require another to perform upon agreed-upon terms. An option is paid for as part of a contract, but must be "exercised" in order for the property to be purchased or the performance of the other party to be required. "Exercise" of an option normally requires notice and payment of the contract price. Thus, a potential buyer of a tract of land might pay $5,000 for the option which gives him/her a period of time to decide if he/she wishes to purchase, tying up the property for that period, and then pay $500,000 for the property. If the time to exercise the option expires then the option terminates. The amount paid for the option itself is not refundable since the funds bought the option whether exercised or not. Often an option is the right to renew a contract such as a lease, broadcasting a television series, the employment of an actor or athlete, or some other existing business relationship. A "lease-option" contract provides for a lease of property with the right to purchase the property during or upon expiration of the lease.

Related Law Terms

abandoned property :: n. property left behind (often by a tenant) intent ... -use. See also: abandon abandonment
abandonment :: n. the act of intentionally and permanently giving ... : abandon abandoned property patent
abstract of title :: n. the written report on a title search which show ... e also: chain of title title report
acceleration clause :: n. a provision in a contract or promissory note th ... . See also: acceleration assumption
acceptance :: n. 1) receiving something from another with the in ... ered into. See also: contract offer
accrue :: v. 1) growing or adding to, such as interest on a ... the contract (anticipatory breach).
adverse possession :: n. a means to acquire title to land through obviou ... o: possession prescriptive easement
alimony :: n. support paid by one ex-spouse to the other as o ... ild support divorce spousal support
anticipatory breach :: n. when a party to a contract repudiates (reneges ... perform. See also: breach contract
assign :: 1) v. to transfer to another person any asset such ... en shows up in contracts and wills.
attachment :: n. the seizing of money or property prior to getti ... bond. See also: writ of attachment
attorney's fee :: n. the payment for legal services. It can take sev ... ees in the particular type of case.
bankruptcy :: n. a federal system of statutes and courts which p ... y proceedings trustee in bankruptcy
basis :: n. the original cost of an asset to be used to det ... ssistance. See also: adjusted basis
beneficial interest :: n. the right of a party to some profit, distributi ... benefits. See also: contract trust
bilateral contract :: n. an agreement in which the parties exchange prom ... also: contract unilateral contract
Bill of Rights :: n. the first ten amendments to the federal Constit ... ved to the states or to the people.
bond :: n. 1) written evidence of debt issued by a company ... good up to the amount of the bond.
breach :: 1) n. literally, a break. A breach may be a failur ... breach of trust breach of warranty
breach of contract :: n. failing to perform any term of a contract, writ ... breach breach specific performance
claim :: 1) v. to make a demand for money, for property, or ... the government, it is lawsuit time.
concurrent sentences :: n. sentences for more than one crime which are to ... ith the longest period controlling.
condemnation :: n. the legal process by which a governmental body ... eminent domain inverse condemnation
condition precedent :: n. 1) in a contract, an event which must take plac ... o the property. See also: condition
condition subsequent :: n. 1) in a contract, a happening which terminates ... Dad Fauntleroy. See also: condition
consideration :: n. 1) payment or money. 2) a vital element in the ... t of a promise). See also: contract
contract :: 1) n. an agreement with specific terms between two ... n oral contract unilateral contract
copyright :: 1) n. the exclusive right of the author or creator ... plagiarism public domain trademark
covenant :: 1) n. a promise in a written contract or a deed of ... o compete deed restrictive covenant
declaratory judgment :: n. a judgment of a court which determines the righ ... ys it. See also: declaratory relief
deed of trust :: n. a document which pledges real property to secur ... : foreclosure mortgage reconveyance
divorce :: 1) n. the termination of a marriage by legal actio ... y separate property spousal support
easement :: n. the right to use the real property of another f ... rstandings at the time of creation.
eviction :: n. a generic word for the act of expelling (kickin ... ve eviction lease unlawful detainer
execute :: v. 1) to finish, complete or perform as required, ... ishment contract executed execution
execution :: n. 1) the act of getting an officer of the court t ... so: death penalty writ of execution
firm offer :: n. in contract law, an offer (usually in writing) ... ptance contract counter offer offer
foreclosure :: n. the system by which a party who has loaned mone ... ced sale mortgage notice of default
fraud :: n. the intentional use of deceit, a trick or some ... audulent conveyance intrinsic fraud
grace period :: n. a time stated in a contract in which a late pay ... the contract, i.e. your insurance.
guarantee :: 1) v. to pledge or agree to be responsible for ano ... as some defect. See also: guarantor
guest :: n. 1) in general, a person paying to stay in a hot ... ce. See also: guest statute invitee
hit and run :: n. the crime of a driver of a vehicle who is invol ... , and then walks back to the scene.
independent contractor :: n. a person or business which performs services fo ... ue independence. See also: employee
insanity :: n. mental illness of such a severe nature that a p ... M'Naughten rule temporary insanity
installment contract :: n. an agreement in which payments of money, delive ... n contract failure of consideration
insurance :: n. a contract (insurance policy) in which the insu ... t clause Workers' Compensation Acts
interest :: n. 1) any and all, partial or total right to prope ... nal property real property standing
interlocutory decree :: n. a court judgment which is temporary and not int ... ppeared to waste the parties' time.
joint :: adj., adv. referring to property, rights or obliga ... ncy joint venture tenancy in common
joint tenancy :: n. a crucial relationship in the ownership of real ... ty property tenancy in common title
jury fees :: n. the rather minimal amount paid each day to juro ... ees as a court cost. See also: jury
just compensation :: n. 1) in general a fair and reasonable amount of m ... ation make one whole quantum meruit
labor and materials :: (time and materials) n. what some builders or repa ... track of actual labor hours worked.
laches :: n. the legal doctrine that a legal right or claim ... , breach of contract, fraud, etc.).
land :: n. real property, real estate (and all that grows ... See also: real estate real property
lease :: 1) n. a written agreement in which the owner of pr ... triple net lease unlawful detainer
leverage :: 1) n. the use of borrowed money to purchase real e ... e been created by risky leveraging.
license :: 1) n. governmental permission to perform a particu ... eement. See also: licensee licensor
lien :: n. any official claim or charge against property o ... ord's lien mechanic's lien mortgage
life estate :: n. the right to use or occupy real property for on ... hter, Sadie, will own the property.
marketable title :: n. the title to real property which has no encumbr ... e. See also: contract real property
marriage :: n. the joining of a male and female in matrimony b ... of time without legal formalities.
mechanic's lien :: n. the right of a craftsman, laborer, supplier, ar ... ll sue for the debt. See also: lien
mortgage :: n. a document in which the owner pledges his/her/i ... losure notice of default trust deed
no fault insurance :: n: a type of automobile insurance required of car ... ling lawsuits. See also: negligence
nominal party :: n. a defendant or a plaintiff included in a lawsui ... ed. See also: necessary party party
nominee :: n. 1) a person or entity who is requested or named ... ic office. See also: agent executor
not guilty by reason of insanity :: n. plea in court of a person charged with a crime ... fense not guilty temporary insanity
notice :: n. 1) information, usually in writing in all legal ... Thirty-day notice three-day notice
omission :: n. 1) failure to perform an act agreed to, where t ... of contract negligence reformation
palimony :: n. a substitute for alimony in cases in which the ... the relationship. See also: alimony
performance :: n. fulfillment of one's obligations required by co ... nce. See also: specific performance
personal services :: n. in contract law, the talents of a person which ... his/her unique ability and product.
possession :: n. 1) any article, object, asset or property which ... ctive possession. See also: possess
possessory interest :: n. in real estate, the intent and right of a perso ... o: possess possession real property
prescription :: n. the method of acquiring an easement upon anothe ... ty. See also: prescriptive easement
privity :: n. contact, connection or mutual interest between ... with the seller. See also: contract
promise :: 1) n. a firm agreement to perform an act, refrain ... so: consideration contract covenant
promissory note :: n. a written promise by a person (variously called ... lso: interest obligee obligor usury
protest :: 1) v. to complain in some public way about any act ... dishonored (not paid by the bank).
quasi community property :: n. in community property states, property acquired ... : community property palimony quasi
real property :: n. 1) all land, structures, firmly attached and in ... onal property real estate reversion
reasonable time :: n. in contracts, common custom in the business or ... a contract using such a vague term.
record :: 1) v. (ree-cored) to put a document into the offic ... eeding race to the courthouse trial
remedy :: n. the means to achieve justice in any matter in w ... gment provisional remedy settlement
rent :: 1) v. to hire an object or real property for a per ... ice. See also: lease month-to-month
requirements contract :: n. a contract between a supplier (or manufacturer) ... produces. See also: output contract
restraint on alienation :: n. an attempt in a deed or will to prevent the sal ... enant rule against perpetuities use
retainer :: n. the advance payment to an attorney for services ... e stuck with extensive unpaid fees.
right :: 1) n. an entitlement to something, whether to conc ... e also: civil rights marital rights
rule against perpetuities :: n. the legal prohibition against tying up property ... . See also: restraint on alienation
specific performance :: n. the right of a party to a contract to demand th ... artwork. See also: contract prayer
speedy trial :: n. in criminal prosecutions, the right of a defend ... hurt by the waiver. See also: trial
statute of limitations :: n. a law which sets the maximum period which one c ... ies. See also: demurrer laches toll
substantial performance :: n. in the law of contracts, fulfillment of the obl ... also: contract specific performance
sum certain :: n. a specific amount stated in a contract or negot ... r redecoration of Williams' house."
tenancy by the entirety :: n. joint ownership of title by husband and wife, i ... ee also: community property tenancy
tenancy in common :: n. title to property (usually real property, but i ... on. See also: joint tenancy tenancy
term :: n. 1) in contracts or leases, a period of time, su ... nancy" is one term for "occupancy."
time is of the essence :: n. a phrase often used in contracts which in effec ... g the agreement. See also: contract
timely :: adj. within the time required by statute, court ru ... ed on the 61st day is not "timely."
triple net lease :: n. a lease in which the lessee's (tenant's) rent i ... ers and malls. See also: lease rent
undue influence :: n. the amount of pressure which one uses to force ... ounder. See also: will will contest
unilateral contract :: n. an agreement to pay in exchange for performance ... consideration contract performance
unlawful detainer :: n. 1) keeping possession of real property without ... Thirty-day notice three-day notice
use :: n. the right to enjoy the benefits of real propert ... ay it is only of academic interest.

Popular Law Searches

legal definition ministerial act :: n. an act, particularly of a governmental employee ... exercising any individual judgment.
chancery legal definition :: n. a court that can order acts performed. Today ch ... ts in most states. See also: equity
testamentary disposition legal definition :: n. how the terms of a will divide the testator's ( ... named beneficiaries. See also: will
contract of sufferance :: n. a "hold-over" tenancy after a lease has expired ... y tenancy at will unlawful detainer
forthwith legal definition :: adv. a term found in contracts, court orders and s ... mediacy, with no excuses for delay.
forthwith definition legal :: adv. a term found in contracts, court orders and s ... mediacy, with no excuses for delay.
what is to wit in a legal contract :: prep. that is to say. Example: "the passengers in ... tty Bumgartner and Sherry Younger."
mirror wills legal definition :: n. the wills of a husband and wife which are ident ... d each names the other as executor.
clean hands doctrine latin :: n. a rule of law that a person coming to court wit ... ices. See also: affirmative defense
sine qua non only relates to contract law :: (see-nay kwah nahn) prep. Latin for "without which ... qua non of the injury to Playmate.

Other Law Terms - O

O.R. :: n. short for "own recognizance," meaning the judge ... "OR-ed." See also: own recognizance
O.S.C. :: n. short for order to show cause. See also: order ... ause. See also: order to show cause
oath :: n. 1) a swearing to tell the truth, the whole trut ... ountry. See also: affidavit perjury
obiter dicta :: : (oh-bitter dick-tah) n. remarks of a judge which ... imply dicta. See also: dicta dictum
object :: 1) v. to ask the court not to allow a particular q ... he contract..." See also: objection
objection :: n. a lawyer's protest about the legal propriety of ... ng question object overrule sustain
obligation :: n. a legal duty to pay or do something. ... legal duty to pay or do something.
obligee :: (ah-bluh-jee) n. the person or entity to whom an o ... ne to be paid on a promissory note.
obligor :: (ah-bluh-gore) n. the person or entity who owes an ... who must pay on a promissory note.
obscene :: adj., adv. a highly subjective reference to materi ... en I see it." See also: pornography
obstruction of justice :: n. an attempt to interfere with the administration ... n arrest. Such activity is a crime.
occupancy :: n. 1) living in or using premises, as a tenant or ... ining ownership. See also: occupant
occupant :: n. 1) someone living in a residence or using premi ... gain ownership. See also: occupancy
occupation :: n. 1) fairly permanent trade, profession, employme ... of real property or use of a thing.
occupational disease :: n. an illness resulting from long-term employment ... tion for a work-related disability.
occupational hazard :: n. a danger or risk inherent in certain employment ... e of death or injury while at work.
occupy the field :: v. to preempt (monopolize) an area of statutory la ... ertain topics. See also: preemption
of counsel :: adj. reference to an attorney who is not actively ... quiring his/her full-time presence.
off calendar :: adj. refers to an order of the court to take a law ... of either party. See also: calendar
offender :: n. an accused defendant in a criminal case or one ... crime. See also: accused defendant