(redirected from mootness)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Idioms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.


An issue presenting no real controversy.

Moot refers to a subject for academic argument. It is an abstract question that does not arise from existing facts or rights.

Moot court is a cocurricular or extracurricular activity in law school where students have the opportunity to write briefs and present oral arguments on hypothetical cases.


adj. 1) unsettled, open to argument, or debatable, specifically about a legal question which has not been determined by any decision of any court. 2) an issue only of academic interest. (See: moot point, moot court)


adjective abstract, academic, actionable, contentious, contestable, contested, controversial, controvertible, debatable, disputable, disputatious, doubtful, dubious, hypothetical, in dispute, in issue, in question, open to discussion, open to question, questionable, questioned, speculative, subject to controversy, suppositional, theoretical, uncertain, under discussion, undetermined, unsettled, untried
Associated concepts: academic question, moot appeal, moot case, moot controversy, moot court, moot question
See also: debate, dubious, equivocal, pose, posit, problematic, propound, undecided


an old English word for an assembly, but now the word is used only
1 as a noun to describe a legal argument not in a court of law, usually held for the purpose of legal education based on a tradition established in the English Inns of Court.
2 as an adjective, a point of law is often said to be moot if, raised in a litigation, the point does not any longer affect the decision in the case before the court.

MOOT, English law. A term used in the inns of court, signifying the exercise of arguing imaginary cases, which young barristers and students used to perform at certain times, the better to be enabled by this practice to defend their clients cases. A moot question is one which has not been decided.

References in periodicals archive ?
2006) ("The party asserting mootness bears the burden of establishing that there is no effective relief that the court can provide.
28) Accordingly, a party's interest in the litigation constitutes what is known as the "personal stake" requirement, (29) and the "personal stake" prong of the mootness doctrine serves the purpose of assuring that courts are presented with disputes they are capable of resolving.
Barnes, the time limits on funding measures could make mootness an important barrier to adjudication.
A legal matter is justiciable if it is such that can be entertained by a law court, not having breached the rule as to mootness, standing and ripeness.
Applying a legal principle unique to mootness, the Court vacated the Ninth Circuit's Fourth Amendment ruling, leaving the qualified immunity ruling in place.
Recently the court decided that the motion by the Illinois AG to vacate and make moot that appeal takes precedence over the appellate process, and that the appeal will be held in abeyance until the mootness question is resolved.
defended the judgment below, so there was no question of mootness.
Oral arguments related to the mootness issue have been scheduled in district court for August 11, 2010.
Merry is of the view that there was very little practical chance that the economic circumstances of the newly acquired territories from Mexico and from the Oregon compromise would have lent themselves to the presence of slavery, but the mootness of the issue nevertheless didn't prevent super-heated controversy over whether Southerners would have a right to take their slaves there.