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[Latin, Let him beware.] A warning; admonition. A formal notice or warning given by an interested party to a court, judge, or ministerial officer in opposition to certain acts within his or her power and jurisdiction.
Originally, a caveat was a document that could be served on either a judge or a public official to give him or her notice that he or she should discontinue a certain proceeding until an opposing party was given an opportunity to be heard.
Used in the past by someone objecting to the appointment of an executor or administrator of an estate or to the granting of a patent for an invention, the term caveat is rarely used by modern attorneys.
n. (kah-vee-ott) from Latin caveat for "let him beware." 1) a warning or caution. 2) a popular term used by lawyers to point out that there may be a hidden problem or defect. In effect, "I just want to warn you that..."
caveatnoun admonishment, admonition, advance notice, advisement, alert, announcement, augury, caution, communication, direction, foretoken, implication, indication, instruction, lesson, notice, notification, order, portendance, portendment, portention, prefiguration, premonition, telling, warning, warning sign
Associated concepts: caveat emptor, caveat venditor
See also: admonition, caution, deterrence, deterrent, direction, instruction, measure, monition, notice, warning
caveata formal notice requesting the court or officer to refrain from taking some specified action without giving prior notice to the person lodging the caveat, found in relation to wills and copyright; in Scotland a common form of process used to protect against miscellaneous interim orders.
CAVEAT, practice. That he beware. Caveat is the name of a notice given by a party having an interest, to some officer, not to do an act, till the party giving the notice shall have been heard; as, a caveat to the register of wills, or judge of probate, not to permit a will to be proved, or not to grant letters of administration, until the party shall have been heard. A caveat is also frequently made to prevent a patent for inventions being issued. 1 Bouv. Inst. 71, 534; 1 Burn's Ecc. Law, 19, 263; Bac. Abr. Executors and Administrators, E 8; 3 Bl. Com. 246; Proctor's Pract. 68; 3 Bin. Rep. 314; 1 Siderf. 371 Poph. 133; Godolph. Orph. Leg. 258; 2 Brownl. 119; 2 Fonbl. Eq. book 4, pt. 2, c. 1, Sec. 3; Ayl. Parer. 145 Nelson's Ab. h.t.; Dane's Ab. c. 223, a. 15, Sec. 2, and a. 8, Sec. 22. See 2 Chit. Pr. 502, note b, for a form.