De Facto

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De Facto

[Latin, In fact.] In fact, in deed, actually.

This phrase is used to characterize an officer, a government, a past action, or a state of affairs that must be accepted for all practical purposes, but is illegal or illegitimate. Thus, an office, position, or status existing under a claim or color of right, such as a de facto corporation. In this sense it is the contrary of de jure, which means rightful, legitimate, just, or constitutional. Thus, an officer, king, or government de facto is one that is in actual possession of the office or supreme power, but by usurpation, or without lawful title; while an officer, king, or governor de jure is one who has just claim and rightful title to the office or power, but has never had plenary possession of it, or is not in actual possession. A wife de facto is one whose marriage is Voidable by decree, as distinguished from a wife de jure, or lawful wife. But the term is also frequently used independently of any distinction from de jure; thus a blockade de facto is a blockade that is actually maintained, as distinguished from a mere paper blockade.

A de facto corporation is one that has been given legal status despite the fact that it has not complied with all the statutory formalities required for corporate existence. Only the state may challenge the validity of the existence of a de facto corporation.

De facto Segregation is the separation of members of different races by various social and economic factors, not by virtue of any government action or statute.

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

de facto

adj. Latin for "in fact." Often used in place of "actual" to show that the court will treat as a fact authority being exercised or an entity acting as if it had authority, even though the legal requirements have not been met. (See: de facto corporation, de jure)

Copyright © 1981-2005 by Gerald N. Hill and Kathleen T. Hill. All Right reserved.

DE FACTO, i. e. in deed. A term used to denote a thing actually done; a president of the United States de facto is one in the exercise of the executive power, and is distinguished from one, who being legally entitled to such power is ejected from it; the latter would be a president de jure. An officer de facto is frequently considered as an officer de jure, and his official acts are of equal validity. 10 S. & R. 250; 4 Binn. R. 371; 11 S. & R. 411, 414; Coxe, 318; 9 Mass. 231; 10 Mass. 290; 15 Mass. 180; 5 Pick. 487.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
not--the overdue judicial examination of the scope of the de facto
The court took the view that the contract was an investment contract rather than a de facto company's Memorandum of Association, because the document did not have a loss sharing provision.
De facto states are basically regarded as political authorities functioning within a certain territory, but lacking international legal recognition.
Appraisers are usually required to ignore project-induced influence, but property owners may attempt to hold the agency responsible for such declines in value by claiming (1) precondemnation damages or (2) a de facto taking.
Kashmir, a disputed Himalayan region, is divided between India and Pakistan by a de facto border called line-of-control (LoC).
Lola receives child support, which spouses from de facto unions are allowed to seek, but a Quebec superior judge ruled Lola was not entitled to seek spousal support or a lump sum payment from her wealthy partner because Quebec's civil code permits only married spouses to seek it.
Noda, a six-term lower house member who was once touted as a potential candidate to become Japan's first female premier, once had a de facto marital relationship with LDP House of Councillors member Yosuke Tsuruho.
By James Okuk May 21, 2010 -- Can a de facto referendum (whether for unity or separation) managed by an illegitimate government in the South be legitimate and durable if it is not recognized by the people and their other political forces in the context of genuine democratic transformation?
Whether a corporation has had a de facto liquidation is a subjective determination based on case law.