declaratory judgment

(redirected from Declaratory ruling)
Also found in: Financial, Wikipedia.

Declaratory Judgment

Statutory remedy for the determination of a Justiciable controversy where the plaintiff is in doubt as to his or her legal rights. A binding adjudication of the rights and status of litigants even though no consequential relief is awarded.

Individuals may seek a declaratory judgment after a legal controversy has arisen but before any damages have occurred or any laws have been violated. A declaratory judgment differs from other judicial rulings in that it does not require that any action be taken. Instead, the judge, after analyzing the controversy, simply issues an opinion declaring the rights of each of the parties involved. A declaratory judgment may only be granted in justiciable controversies—that is, in actual, rather than hypothetical, controversies that fall within a court's jurisdiction.

A declaratory judgment, sometimes called declaratory relief, is conclusive and legally binding as to the present and future rights of the parties involved. The parties involved in a declaratory judgment may not later seek another court resolution of the same legal issue unless they appeal the judgment.

Declaratory judgments are often sought in situations involving contracts, deeds, leases, and wills. An insurance company, for example, might seek a declaratory judgment as to whether a policy applies to a certain person or event. Declaratory judgments also commonly involve individuals or parties who seek to determine their rights under specific regulatory or criminal laws.

Declaratory judgments are considered a type of preventive justice because, by informing parties of their rights, they help them to avoid violating specific laws or the terms of a contract. In 1934 Congress enacted the Declaratory Judgment Act (28 U.S.C.A. § 2201 et seq.), which allows for declaratory judgments concerning issues of federal law. At the state level, the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws passed the Uniform Declaratory Judgments Act (12 U.L.A. 109) in 1922. Between 1922 and 1993, this act was adopted in forty-one states, the Virgin Islands, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. Most other states have varying laws that provide for declaratory judgments. Most declaratory judgment laws grant judges discretion to decide whether or not to issue a declaratory judgment.

Further readings

Howard, Davis J. 1994. "Declaratory Judgment Coverage Actions." Ohio Northern University Law Review 13.

declaratory judgment

n. a judgment of a court which determines the rights of parties without ordering anything be done or awarding damages. While this borders on the prohibited "advisory opinion," it is allowed to nip controversies in the bud. Examples: a party to a contract may seek the legal interpretation of a contract to determine the parties' rights, or a corporation may ask a court to decide whether a new tax is truly applicable to that business before it pays it. (See: declaratory relief)

declaratory judgment

noun affirmation, announcement, declaration, enunciation, judgment of the court, non-executionary judgment
References in periodicals archive ?
Commission's 2009 Declaratory Ruling interpreting section 332(c)(7)
The cities of Arlington and San Antonio, Texas sought review of the Declaratory Ruling in the Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.
A good faith report or disclosure also includes, with respect to patient care, a report regarding any practice, procedure, action or failure to act with regard to patient safety that concerns information regarding a generally accepted standard of care; a law, rule, regulation or declaratory ruling adopted pursuant to law; or compliance with a professional licensure requirement, which report is made without malice or consideration of personal benefit and that the health care worker making the report has reasonable cause to believe is true.
In March 2002, the FCC released a Declaratory Ruling and Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, (46) in which the FCC attempted to resolve the lingering questions regarding the legal status under the Communications Act of high-speed access to the Internet provided by cable modem services.
However, in a recent ruling, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) declared that VoIP is not so subject; see In the Matter of Vonage Holdings Corporation Petition for Declaratory Ruling Concerning an Order of the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (FCC 04-267 (2004)).
02-70518, 02- 70684, and 02-70685) affirmed in part, vacated in part, and remanded in part the FCC's declaratory ruling that cable modem services are properly classified as information services.
The decision will help the federal appeals court determine whether to uphold a declaratory ruling in favor of the doctor in his lawsuit seeking lifetime disability benefits from Provident Life and Accident Insurance Co.
After several months of negotiations, he was able to win a declaratory ruling enabling the transaction to proceed.
The United States District Court for the Central District of California granted summary judgment to Nicholas Jarecki, issuing a declaratory ruling that claimants Michael Ohoven and Infinity Media have no interest in the copyright of Mr.
On July 10, 2015, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) released its TCPA Omnibus Declaratory Ruling and Order "to reiterate and simplify the relevant portions of the TCPA.
16, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Within hours of the July 10, 2015 release of the Federal Communications Commission's Declaratory Ruling on the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, ACA International was the first to file suit seeking judicial review from the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.