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A legal obligation that entails mandatory conduct or performance. With respect to the laws relating to Customs Duties, a tax owed to the government for the import or export of goods.

A fiduciary, such as an executor or trustee, who occupies a position of confidence in relation to a third person, owes such person a duty to render services, provide care, or perform certain acts on his or her behalf.

In the context of Negligence cases, a person has a duty to comport himself or herself in a particular manner with respect to another person.

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


n. 1) a legal obligation, the breach of which can result in liability. In a lawsuit a plaintiff must claim and prove that there was a duty by defendant to plaintiff. This can be a duty of care in a negligence case or a duty to perform in a contract case. 2) a tax on imports. (See: duty of care)

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

DUTY, natural law. A human action which is, exactly conformable to the laws which require us to obey them.
     2. It differs from a legal obligation, because a duty cannot always be enforced by the law; it is our duty, for example, to be temperate in eating, but we are under no legal obligation to be so; we ought to love our neighbors, but no law obliges us to love them.
     3. Duties may be considered in the relation of man towards God, towards himself, and towards mankind. 1. We are bound to obey the will of God as far as we are able to discover it, because he is the sovereign Lord of the universe who made and governs all things by his almighty power, and infinite wisdom. The general name of this duty is piety: which consists in entertaining just opinions concerning him, and partly in such affections towards him, and such, worship of him, as is suitable to these opinions.
     4.-2. A man has a duty to perform towards himself; he is bound by the law of nature to protect his life and his limbs; it is his duty, too, to avoid all intemperance in eating and drinking, and in the unlawful gratification of all his other appetites.
     5.-3. He has duties to perform towards others. He is bound to do to others the same justice which he would have a right to expect them to do to him.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
Moreover, the administrator who was duty bound to look-after the developmental matters of the society had badly engaged in this finical corruption.
County chairman Michael McDonagh said Clare GAA are duty bound to clear the site properly, which takes seven years in total.
According to BBC, under the terms of Suarez's deal, the club is duty bound to consider any offer for him in excess of 40 million pounds and then inform the 26-year-old of it but they do not have to sell and have now rejected two bids from Arsenal.
Neither species are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act, but the agency felt duty bound to highlight its discovery.
The society said the Penrose Report, produced by Scottish judge Lord Penrose, raised "no material adverse financial consequences", and added that it thought the Parliamentary Ombudsman was now "duty bound" to reopen her investigation into the society's regulators, potentially opening the way for compensation for policyholders.
The Church is duty bound for moral reasons to expose to people of faith the truth about abortion and abortifacient birth control that puts pre-born children at grave risk.
When he later finds Bob in the tender hands of Princess Shalamar (Dorothy Lamour), he feels duty bound to rescue his old friend - or even swap places.
But agent Philip Graham said a contract must be agreed soon or he would be duty bound to find the 22-year-old another club.
He said the government was duty bound to provide peaceful atmosphere to the people and all out efforts were being made to promote tolerance, brotherhood, and to encourage those who have passion to perform duties in the best way.
He said that we are duty bound to vaccinate our children against the disease and save their future from peril.
'We are seeking the performance report of Kashmir committee for past four years but speaker National Assembly (NA) says they are not duty bound to give details' she stated this while talking to media persons at National Institute of Strategic Studies.
He criticized Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi for arresting an honest and duty bound police officer like Sanjiv Bhatt.