- of, relating to, or established by common law: a common-law spouse.
Origin of common-law
- the system of law originating in England, as distinct from the civil or Roman law and the canon or ecclesiastical law.
- the unwritten law, especially of England, based on custom or court decision, as distinct from statute law.
- the law administered through the system of courts established for the purpose, as distinct from equity or admiralty.
Origin of common law
Examples from the Web for common-law
Less canonically, “natural marriage” is also at times used as a rough synonym for “common-law marriage.”What Is ‘Natural Marriage?’
March 27, 2014
Single-parent, same-sex, and common-law families barely penetrated public consciousness, much less the Hebrew lexicon.People-Powered Social Revolution in Israel Promotes Rights of Same-Sex Families
November 15, 2013
Common-law partnerships have their own independent authority and validity.
Common-law partnership makes the couple, and not the government or religious institution, the authority in family life.
Common-law partnership offers privacy and autonomy in a world of increasing intrusion and regulation.
Let me ask, Can the city by any means legalize a common-law misdemeanor?Jersey Street and Jersey Lane
H. C. Bunner
I am a common-law barrister, and am rising in my profession.
"That idea of a common-law marriage was clever," Groll said musing.Max Fargus
Now, you understand, gentlemen, that there is no common-law jurisdiction of offences residing in the United States Courts.
I took up with him at once the matter of Zoe's common-law marriage.Children of the Market Place
Edgar Lee Masters
- the body of law based on judicial decisions and custom, as distinct from statute law
- the law of a state that is of general application, as distinct from regional customs
- common-law (modifier) denoting a marriage deemed to exist after a couple have cohabited for several yearscommon-law marriage; common-law wife
Word Origin and History for common-law
mid-14c., "the customary and unwritten laws of England as embodied in commentaries and old cases" (see common (adj.)), as opposed to statute law. Phrase common law marriage is attested from 1909.