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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..."


noun 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


a 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.

References in periodicals archive ?
In Afghanistan, for example, Operation Medusa (13) nearly failed when Canadian forces could not get the necessary support from other nations because of their national caveats related to combat operations.
The Manitoba Court of Queen's Bench held that the doctrine of caveat emptor did not apply to latent defects and where, as in this case, these defects were actively concealed by the vendor, the purchaser was entitled to seek rescission with compensation for damages resulting from the concealment.
2123 does it specifically state that an heir or a devisee under a will other than that being offered for probate, who filed a caveat, must receive prior notice of the petition for administration.
The CIA report was passed on through the Undersecretary of Defense for Policy offices with the caveat that the report, in the words of one policy analyst, "should be read for content only--and the CIA's interpretation ought to be ignored.
We cross the line, however, when we pitch constructed wetlands without mentioning the caveat that these surrogate ecologic features are intended to become contaminated (per heavy metal sinks, for example) and that this will impair other uses for these facilities, including use as habitat for species that rely on wetlands and cannot discern the real from the fake.
A second practical caveat concerns the potentially wide variability in the detail, and indeed the quality, of information that is available through this process.
The caveat is that explosive strength training can be risky.
That caveat aside--and it is a caveat that reflects only the current state of research--Siraisi has produced a remarkable book, one that is extraordinary for its richness and its range as well as its readability.
Caveat emptor is well and good, but it's only half the story.
Alpert, citing precedent, said "New York adheres to the doc trine of caveat emptor and imposes no duty upon the vendor to disclose, any information concerning the premises, unless there is some conduct on the part of the seller which constitutes 'active concealment.
On January 14, Virginia Governor George Allen threw his support behind a state constitutional amendment that lacks even that caveat, declaring in defense: "Parents have good sense.