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Nonprofessional, such as a lay witness who is not a recognized expert in the area that is the subject of the person's testimony. That which relates to persons or entities not clerical or ecclesiastical; a person not in ecclesiastical orders. To present the formal declarations by the parties of their respective claims and defenses in pleadings. A share of the profits of a fishing or Whaling voyage, allotted to the officers and seamen, in the nature of wages.

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

LAY, English law. That which relates to persons or things not ecclesiastical. In the United States the people are not, by law, divided, as in England, into ecclesiastical and lay. The law makes no distinction between them.

TO LAY, pleading. To state or to allege. The place from whence a jury are to be summoned, is called the venue, and the allegation in the declaration, of the place where the jury is to be summoned, is in technical language, said to lay the venue. 3 Steph. Com. 574; 3 Bouv. Inst. n. 2826.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
One thing seemed reasonably comprehensible, that is most easily translatable into their own political epistemologies: that there were some men of elevated status who wore and laid claim to the skins of leopards and lions.
Ninety-six years after two men separately laid claim to being the first person to reach the North Pole, supporters of each man are still arguing about who really won that race.
During the 40 years plus the Tibetan people have not seen their Dalai Lama, Dolma narrates, over 1.2 million Tibetans have been executed by Chinese authorities, who laid claim to the mountain-nestled "Rooftop of the World" not only by physical force but by the sheer power of numbers--more Chinese than Tibetans now comprise a population of 2.7 million.
Karen Hesse's CATS IN KRASINSKI SQUARE (0439435404, $16.95) tells of cats who once belonged to someone--just as a young girl whose family has been destroyed by war has also once laid claim to love.
More recently, both Spain and Mexico laid claim to the land controlled by the Mescalero and Camanche, but neither was able to settle it.
THE UK's newest MP has "laid claim" to pop queen Kylie Minogue.
In doing so, the company laid claim to the distinction of being the first private company in the Bronx to use a heavy-duty vehicle fueled by CNG.
After the discovery of the North American continent by John Cabot in 1497, there were attempts to establish colonies on the land England had laid claim to.