5 legal maxims that should be on your fingertips. Why? Because lawyers are hot. And sometimes they talk in another language. We decided to teach you some. It’s a hit at the bar (pun intended)
Maxim: Caveat emptor
Meaning: Buyer beware
Where to use it: If your
favourite place to buy antiques is Chor Bazaar, do remember caveat emptor before you lighten your wallet by a few thousand bucks.
Maxim: Audi alteram partem
Meaning: No man can be condemned unheard
Whom to use it with: Next time your wife accuses you of not paying enough attention to her while you’re glued to your favourite sport, use audi alteram partem in your favour – but make sure you come up with a good explanation when she asks for one (women love explanations).
Maxim: Res ipsa loquitur
Meaning: The thing speaks for itself
When to use it: When after an abdominal surgery, the surgeon leaves a scalpel in your tummy, his/her negligence would be res ipsa loquitur.
Maxim: Volenti non fit injuria
Meaning: No injury is done to someone who has consented; it is a voluntary assumption of risk
Why to use it: You know your boss has: (a) had a fight with his wife this morning; (b) cancelled his vacation due to work; (c) abused a demanding client over a call forgetting to put the phone on mute; and you still walk in to his office to negotiate your raise. He throws out your demand and you cannot complain – this is a classic case of volenti non fit injuria.
Maxim: Nemo debet esse judex in propria causa
Meaning: No man can be a judge in his own cause
How to use it: You’ve just polished off an entire packet of potato chips and wonder whether your growing love handles can deal with a second one. You decide they can. You just violated this maxim.
The readers are advised to use their own discretion while using the above maxims!
From HT Brunch, July 7
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