Define: Abeyance

Quick Summary of Abeyance

Abeyance refers to a state of temporary suspension or inactivity, often in legal or administrative contexts. When a matter is held in abeyance, it is put on hold or deferred until certain conditions are met, a decision is made, or further action is taken. For example, legal proceedings may be held in abeyance pending the outcome of related cases, negotiations, or the resolution of procedural issues. Similarly, administrative processes or decisions may be held in abeyance until additional information is provided, a review is completed, or new regulations are enacted. Abeyance allows for flexibility and allows parties to address issues or concerns before moving forward with a decision or action.

What is the dictionary definition of Abeyance?
Dictionary Definition of Abeyance

Abeyance is a noun that refers to a temporary state of suspension or inactivity. It is often used to describe a situation where something is put on hold or postponed for a period of time. During abeyance, the activity or process is not actively pursued or enforced, but it is expected to resume or be resolved in the future. This term is commonly used in legal, administrative, or organisational contexts to indicate a temporary pause or delay in proceedings, rights, or obligations.

  1. n. when the ownership of property has not been determined. Examples include title to real property in the estate of a person who has died and there is no obvious party to receive the title or there appears to be no legal owner of the property, a shipwreck while it is being determined who has the right to salvage the ship and its cargo, or a bankrupt person’s property before the bankruptcy court has decided what property is available to creditors or alleged heirs.
  2. legal jargon for “undetermined.
Full Definition Of Abeyance

A lapse in succession during which there is no person in whom title is vested. In the law of estates, the condition of a freehold when there is no person in whom it is vested. In such cases, the freehold has been said to be in nubibus (in the clouds), in pendenti (in suspension), and in gremio legis (in the bosom of the law). Where there is a tenant of the freehold, the remainder or reversion in fee may exist for a time without any particular owner, in which case it is said to be in abeyance. A condition of being undetermined or in state of suspension or inactivity. In regard to sales to third parties of property acquired by county at tax sale, being held in abeyance means that certain rights or conditions are in expectancy.

For example, until an order of foreclosure is granted by a court, a mortgagee does not have title to the property of a delinquent debtor that is the subject of a mortgage in those jurisdictions that follow the lien theory of mortgages.

Abeyance FAQ'S

Abeyance refers to a temporary suspension or cessation of legal rights, duties, or proceedings, often pending the occurrence of a future event or resolution of an issue.

In legal proceedings, abeyance may result in the postponement of action or decision-making until certain conditions are met, such as the resolution of a dispute, the passage of time, or the fulfilment of a contractual obligation.

Abeyance may occur for various reasons, including pending litigation, unresolved disputes, pending regulatory approvals, lack of capacity or competency, or other circumstances that temporarily prevent the enforcement or exercise of legal rights.

The duration of abeyance in legal matters varies depending on the nature of the issue, the parties involved, and the specific circumstances. Abeyance may be temporary or indefinite until the conditions triggering its resolution are satisfied.

Yes, parties involved in legal proceedings or contractual agreements may agree to place the matter in abeyance through mutual consent, often by stipulating terms and conditions for resuming proceedings or enforcing rights at a later date.

Yes, courts, administrative agencies, or regulatory bodies may order abeyance in legal matters to facilitate the resolution of disputes, preserve the status quo, or allow parties time to comply with legal requirements.

During abeyance, legal rights and obligations may be temporarily suspended or placed on hold, with parties often retaining their rights but unable to enforce them until abeyance is lifted.

Abeyance may be terminated by the occurrence of a specified event, resolution of the underlying issue, court order, mutual agreement of the parties, or other triggering events specified in the relevant legal documents.

Placing a legal matter in abeyance may carry risks, including potential delays, uncertainty, and the possibility of unforeseen developments affecting the outcome or resolution of the matter.

Related Phrases
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This site contains general legal information but does not constitute professional legal advice for your particular situation. Persuing this glossary does not create an attorney-client or legal adviser relationship. If you have specific questions, please consult a qualified attorney licensed in your jurisdiction.

This glossary post was last updated: 29th March 2024.

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