Definitions of precedent

  1. an example that is used to justify similar occurrences at a later time
  2. ( civil law) a law established by following earlier judicial decisions
  3. a subject mentioned earlier ( preceding in time)
  4. Something previously said or done that may serve as an example to be followed.
  5. That which may serve as an example or rule in the future: a parallel case in the past.
  6. An example in the past.
  7. Previous usage.
  8. An antecedent.
  9. Something said or done before, as an example to follow in a similar case; a previous parallel case.
  10. That may serve as an example or rule to be followed in future actions of the like kind; that which has been done before of a like kind; an authority, or a judicial decision to be followed in similar or analogous cases.
  12. a system of jurisprudence based on judicial precedents rather than statutory laws; " common law originated in the unwritten laws of England and was later applied in the United States"
  13. Going before; anterior; preceding; antecedent; as, precedent services.
  14. Something done or said that may serve as an example to authorize a subsequent act of the same kind; an authoritative example.
  15. A preceding circumstance or condition; an antecedent; hence, a prognostic; a token; a sign.
  16. A rough draught of a writing which precedes a finished copy.
  17. A judicial decision which serves as a rule for future determinations in similar or analogous cases; an authority to be followed in courts of justice; forms of proceeding to be followed in similar cases.
  18. A legal principle or rule created by one or more decisions of a state or federal appellate court. These rules provide a point of reference or authority for judges deciding similar issues in later cases. Lower courts must apply these rules when faced with similar legal issues. For example, if the Montana Supreme Court decides that a certain type of employment contract overly restricts the right of the employee to quit and get another job, all other Montana courts must apply this same rule.
  19. Going before: anterior.