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Courtesy; respect; a disposition to perform some official act out of goodwill and tradition rather than obligation or law. The acceptance or Adoption of decisions or laws by a court of another jurisdiction, either foreign or domestic, based on public policy rather than legal mandate.

In comity, an act is performed to promote uniformity, limit litigation, and, most important, to show courtesy and respect for other court decisions. It is not to be confused with full faith and credit, the constitutional provision that various states within the United States must recognize the laws, acts, and decisions of sister states.

Comity of nations is a recognition of fundamental legal concepts that nations share. It stems from mutual convenience as well as respect and is essential to the success of international relations. This body of rules does not form part of International Law; however, it is important for public policy reasons.

Judicial comity is the granting of reciprocity to decisions or laws by one state or jurisdiction to another. Since it is based upon respect and deference rather than strict legal principles, it does not require that any state or jurisdiction adopt a law or decision by another state or jurisdiction that is in contradiction, or repugnant, to its own law.

Comity of states is the voluntary acceptance by courts of one state of the decision of a sister state on a similar issue or question.


n. when one court defers to the jurisdiction of another in a case in which both would have the right to handle the case. Usually this is applied to a federal court allowing a state court to try a criminal case (either exclusively or first) in which both a state and federal crime has apparently been committed. Murder which also violates civil rights, kidnapping across state borders, murder of a federal official, fraud involving violations of both federal and state laws are examples of cases to which comity may apply.


noun accommodation, accord, affability, agreeableness, amenity, amiability, amity, benevolence, camaraderie, civility, compliance, concord, consideration, cordiality, courtesy, courtly politeeess, deference, disposition to please, fellow feeling, friendliness, general reciprocity, gentility, good will, graciousness, harmony, mansuetude, mutual consideration, mutual respect, neighborliness, obligingness, politeness, prévenance, reciprocity, respect, respectfulness
Associated concepts: comity between courts, comity in connlict of laws, comity of nations, comity of states

COMITY. Courtesy; a disposition to accommodate.
     2. Courts of justice in one state will, out of comity, enforce the laws of another state, when by such enforcement they will not violate their laws or inflict. an injury on some one of their own citizens; as, for example, the discharge of a debtor under the insolvent laws of one state, will be respected in another state, where there is a reciprocity in this respect.
     3. It is a general rule that the municipal laws of a country do not extend beyond its limits, and cannot be enforced in another, except on the principle of comity. But when those laws clash and interfere with the rights of citizens, or the laws of the countries where the parties to the contract seek to enforce it, as one or the other must give way, those prevailing where the relief is sought must have the preference. 2 Mart. Lo. Rep. N. S. 93; S. C. 2 Harr. Cond. Lo. Rep. 606, 609; 2 B. & C. 448, 471; 6 Binn. 353; 5 Cranch, 299; 2 Mass. 84; 6 Mass. 358; 7 Mart. Lo. R. 318. See Conflict of Laws; Lex loci contractus.

References in periodicals archive ?
Imran said that there should be adequate investment in the country's youths so that Pakistan could make a rapid headway in the comity of nations.
Various ceremonies and seminars will be organized in which eminent scientists, intellectuals, defence analysts and notable personalities will pay tributes to the team of nuclear scientists who did raise Pakistan's strategic status in the comity of nations and signified the principle of self-reliance.
Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi called the need for promoting unity, brotherhood and affinity by discouraging mistrust, sectarianism and terrorism so as to gain respect among the comity of nations.
Various ceremonies and seminars will be organized in which eminent scientists, intellectuals, defense analysts and notable personalities will pay rich tributes to the team of nuclear scientists who raised Pakistan's strategic status in the comity of nations and signified the principle of self-reliance.
He said the exemplary arrangements made for Pakistani pilgrims have also brought a good name to the country in the comity of nations.
Ijaz Ahmad, a senior cardiologist practicing in New York for last 10 years said the APPAC had already started a dialogue process to highlight Pakistan's peaceful role in the comity of nations.
He said that education was a sine qua non for determining a nation's status in the comity of nations and achieving socio- economic development.
Honourable Judge through his conduct has also tarnished the noble image and reputation enjoyed by the judiciary in Pakistan and comity of nations,' alleged Sadiq.
He expreesed the hope that the government would continue to extend support Kashmiris in the comity of nations.
In his remarks to the audience, the ambassador noted the tremendous progress made by Pakistan over the last 70 years and the prominent place enjoyed by it among the comity of nations.
The minister stressed the need for achieving prominent position in the comity of nations with the help of modern technology and research.
He outlined the vision of the Quaid-e-Azam and Allama Iqbal and emphasized that to ensure Pakistan's outstanding place in the comity of nations, we as a nation, need to follow, in letter and spirit, the golden principles of 'Faith, Unity and Discipline' in all walks of life , no matter where we are.