out of court


Also found in: Idioms.

out of court

adj. referring to actions, including negotiations between parties and/or their attorneys, without any direct involvement of a judge or the judicial system. Most commonly it refers to an "out-of-court settlement" in which the parties work out a settlement agreement, which they may present to the court for inclusion in a judgment approving the agreement so that the parties can request a court to enforce the settlement in case one of the parties reneges and fails to honor the terms of the settlement. Quite often a judgment approving an out-of-court settlement is held in abeyance and replaced by a dismissal if the terms are fulfilled. Some out-of-court settlements are kept confidential and the lawsuit is dismissed. (See: settlement)

References in periodicals archive ?
Out of court, the force settled in 2002 with six people who claimed they had been assaulted by a garda, with pay-outs totalling E166,924.
Official figures released by the Government show most payments were made out of court for claims relating to injuries, assaults and "medical negligence".
Half the firms faced with employment disputes are more likely to settle them out of court.