Terms Used In Texas Estates Code > Title 2 > Subtitle G
- Allegation: something that someone says happened.
- Answer: The formal written statement by a defendant responding to a civil complaint and setting forth the grounds for defense.
- Appeal: A request made after a trial, asking another court (usually the court of appeals) to decide whether the trial was conducted properly. To make such a request is "to appeal" or "to take an appeal." One who appeals is called the appellant.
- Appraisal: A determination of property value.
- Appropriation: The provision of funds, through an annual appropriations act or a permanent law, for federal agencies to make payments out of the Treasury for specified purposes. The formal federal spending process consists of two sequential steps: authorization
- Assets: (1) The property comprising the estate of a deceased person, or (2) the property in a trust account.
- Attachment: A procedure by which a person's property is seized to pay judgments levied by the court.
- Authorized corporate surety: means a domestic or foreign corporation authorized to engage in business in this state for the purpose of issuing surety, guaranty, or indemnity bonds that guarantee the fidelity of an executor or administrator. See Texas Estates Code 22.002
- Bail: Security given for the release of a criminal defendant or witness from legal custody (usually in the form of money) to secure his/her appearance on the day and time appointed.
- Bankruptcy: Refers to statutes and judicial proceedings involving persons or businesses that cannot pay their debts and seek the assistance of the court in getting a fresh start. Under the protection of the bankruptcy court, debtors may discharge their debts, perhaps by paying a portion of each debt. Bankruptcy judges preside over these proceedings.
- Beneficiary: A person who is entitled to receive the benefits or proceeds of a will, trust, insurance policy, retirement plan, annuity, or other contract. Source: OCC
- Bequest: Property gifted by will.
- Charitable organization: means :
(1) a nonprofit corporation, trust, community chest, fund, foundation, or other entity that is:
(A) exempt from federal income tax under Section 501(a), Internal Revenue Code of 1986, by being described by Section 501(c)(3) of that code; and
(B) organized and operated exclusively for:
(i) religious, charitable, scientific, educational, or literary purposes;
(ii) testing for public safety;
(iii) preventing cruelty to children or animals; or
(iv) promoting amateur sports competition; or
(2) any other entity that is organized and operated exclusively for the purposes listed in Section 501(c)(3), Internal Revenue Code of 1986. See Texas Estates Code 22.003
- Charity: An agency, institution, or organization in existence and operating for the benefit of an indefinite number of persons and conducted for educational, religious, scientific, medical, or other beneficent purposes.
- Child: includes an adopted child, regardless of whether the adoption occurred through:
(1) an existing or former statutory procedure; or
(2) an equitable adoption or acts of estoppel. See Texas Estates Code 22.004
- Claims: includes :
(1) liabilities of a decedent that survive the decedent's death, including taxes, regardless of whether the liabilities arise in contract or tort or otherwise;
(2) funeral expenses;
(3) the expense of a tombstone;
(4) expenses of administration;
(5) estate and inheritance taxes; and
(6) debts due such estates. See Texas Estates Code 22.005
- Commissioner: means the commissioner of agriculture. See Texas Agriculture Code 1.003
- Common law: The legal system that originated in England and is now in use in the United States. It is based on judicial decisions rather than legislative action.
- Complaint: A written statement by the plaintiff stating the wrongs allegedly committed by the defendant.
- Counterclaim: A claim that a defendant makes against a plaintiff.
- Court: means and includes:
(1) a county court in the exercise of its probate jurisdiction;
(2) a court created by statute and authorized to exercise original probate jurisdiction; and
(3) a district court exercising original probate jurisdiction in a contested matter. See Texas Estates Code 22.007
- Decedent: A deceased person.
- Dependent: A person dependent for support upon another.
- Deposition: An oral statement made before an officer authorized by law to administer oaths. Such statements are often taken to examine potential witnesses, to obtain discovery, or to be used later in trial.
- Devisee: includes a legatee. See Texas Estates Code 22.009
- Discovery: Lawyers' examination, before trial, of facts and documents in possession of the opponents to help the lawyers prepare for trial.
- Distributee: means a person who is entitled to a part of the estate of a decedent under a lawful will or the statutes of descent and distribution. See Texas Estates Code 22.010
- District office: means an office of the federal or state government that is not voted on statewide. See Texas Election Code 1.005
- Docket: means the probate docket. See Texas Estates Code 22.011
- Electronic funds transfer: The transfer of money between accounts by consumer electronic systems-such as automated teller machines (ATMs) and electronic payment of bills-rather than by check or cash. (Wire transfers, checks, drafts, and paper instruments do not fall into this category.) Source: OCC
- Entitlement: A Federal program or provision of law that requires payments to any person or unit of government that meets the eligibility criteria established by law. Entitlements constitute a binding obligation on the part of the Federal Government, and eligible recipients have legal recourse if the obligation is not fulfilled. Social Security and veterans' compensation and pensions are examples of entitlement programs.
- Equitable: Pertaining to civil suits in "equity" rather than in "law." In English legal history, the courts of "law" could order the payment of damages and could afford no other remedy. See damages. A separate court of "equity" could order someone to do something or to cease to do something. See, e.g., injunction. In American jurisprudence, the federal courts have both legal and equitable power, but the distinction is still an important one. For example, a trial by jury is normally available in "law" cases but not in "equity" cases. Source: U.S. Courts
- Estate: means a decedent's property, as that property:
(1) exists originally and as the property changes in form by sale, reinvestment, or otherwise;
(2) is augmented by any accretions and other additions to the property, including any property to be distributed to the decedent's representative by the trustee of a trust that terminates on the decedent's death, and substitutions for the property; and
(3) is diminished by any decreases in or distributions from the property. See Texas Estates Code 22.012
- Ex officio: Literally, by virtue of one's office.
- Executor: A male person named in a will to carry out the decedent
- Fair market value: The price at which an asset would change hands in a transaction between a willing, informed buyer and a willing, informed seller.
- Fiduciary: A trustee, executor, or administrator.
- Foreclosure: A legal process in which property that is collateral or security for a loan may be sold to help repay the loan when the loan is in default. Source: OCC
- Fraud: Intentional deception resulting in injury to another.
- Garnishment: Generally, garnishment is a court proceeding in which a creditor asks a court to order a third party who owes money to the debtor or otherwise holds assets belonging to the debtor to turn over to the creditor any of the debtor
- General election: means an election, other than a primary election, that regularly recurs at fixed dates. See Texas Election Code 1.005
- Gift: A voluntary transfer or conveyance of property without consideration, or for less than full and adequate consideration based on fair market value.
- Governmental agency of the state: means :
(1) a municipality;
(2) a county;
(3) a public school district;
(4) a special-purpose district or authority;
(5) a board, commission, department, office, or other agency in the executive branch of state government, including an institution of higher education, as defined by Section Texas Estates Code 22.014
- Heir: means a person who is entitled under the statutes of descent and distribution to a part of the estate of a decedent who dies intestate. See Texas Estates Code 22.015
- Independent candidate: means a candidate in a nonpartisan election or a candidate in a partisan election who is not the nominee of a political party. See Texas Election Code 1.005
- Independent executor: means the personal representative of an estate under independent administration as provided by Chapter Texas Estates Code 22.017
- Injunction: An order of the court prohibiting (or compelling) the performance of a specific act to prevent irreparable damage or injury.
- Intestate: Dying without leaving a will.
- Joint tenancy: A form of property ownership in which two or more parties hold an undivided interest in the same property that was conveyed under the same instrument at the same time. A joint tenant can sell his (her) interest but not dispose of it by will. Upon the death of a joint tenant, his (her) undivided interest is distributed among the surviving joint tenants.
- Judge: means the presiding judge of any court having original jurisdiction over probate proceedings, regardless of whether the court is:
(1) a county court in the exercise of its probate jurisdiction;
(2) a court created by statute and authorized to exercise probate jurisdiction; or
(3) a district court exercising probate jurisdiction in a contested matter. See Texas Estates Code 22.019
- Law: means a constitution, statute, city charter, or city ordinance. See Texas Election Code 1.005
- Lawsuit: A legal action started by a plaintiff against a defendant based on a complaint that the defendant failed to perform a legal duty, resulting in harm to the plaintiff.
- Legislative session: That part of a chamber's daily session in which it considers legislative business (bills, resolutions, and actions related thereto).
- Liabilities: The aggregate of all debts and other legal obligations of a particular person or legal entity.
- lien: include :
(1) a deed of trust;
(2) a vendor's lien, a mechanic's, materialman's, or laborer's lien, an attachment or garnishment lien, and a federal or state tax lien;
(3) a chattel mortgage;
(4) a judgment; and
(5) a pledge by hypothecation. See Texas Estates Code 22.024
- Litigation: A case, controversy, or lawsuit. Participants (plaintiffs and defendants) in lawsuits are called litigants.
- Livestock: means cattle, horses, mules, asses, sheep, goats, llamas, alpacas, exotic livestock, including elk and elk hybrids, and hogs, unless otherwise defined. See Texas Agriculture Code 1.003
- Measure: means a question or proposal submitted in an election for an expression of the voters' will. See Texas Election Code 1.005
- Minor: means a person younger than 18 years of age who:
(1) has never been married; and
(2) has not had the disabilities of minority removed for general purposes. See Texas Estates Code 22.022
- Month: means a calendar month. See Texas Government Code 312.011
- Next of kin: includes :
(1) an adopted child or the adopted child's descendants; and
(2) the adoptive parent of the adopted child. See Texas Estates Code 22.026
- Oath: includes affirmation. See Texas Government Code 311.005
- Partnership: A voluntary contract between two or more persons to pool some or all of their assets into a business, with the agreement that there will be a proportional sharing of profits and losses.
- Person: includes a natural person and a corporation. See Texas Estates Code 22.027
- person interested: means :
(1) an heir, devisee, spouse, creditor, or any other having a property right in or claim against an estate being administered; and
(2) anyone interested in the welfare of an incapacitated person, including a minor. See Texas Estates Code 22.018
- Personal property: includes an interest in:
(3) a chose in action;
(4) an evidence of debt; and
(5) a real chattel. See Texas Estates Code 22.028
- personal representative: include :
(1) an executor and independent executor;
(2) an administrator, independent administrator, and temporary administrator; and
(3) a successor to an executor or administrator listed in Subdivision (1) or (2). See Texas Estates Code 22.031
- Political subdivision: means a county, city, or school district or any other governmental entity that:
(A) embraces a geographic area with a defined boundary;
(B) exists for the purpose of discharging functions of government; and
(C) possesses authority for subordinate self-government through officers selected by it. See Texas Election Code 1.005
- Power of attorney: A written instrument which authorizes one person to act as another's agent or attorney. The power of attorney may be for a definite, specific act, or it may be general in nature. The terms of the written power of attorney may specify when it will expire. If not, the power of attorney usually expires when the person granting it dies. Source: OCC
- Preliminary hearing: A hearing where the judge decides whether there is enough evidence to make the defendant have a trial.
- Presiding officer: A majority-party Senator who presides over the Senate and is charged with maintaining order and decorum, recognizing Members to speak, and interpreting the Senate's rules, practices and precedents.
- Primary election: means an election held by a political party under Chapter Texas Election Code 1.005
- Probate: Proving a will
- Proposition: means the wording appearing on a ballot to identify a measure. See Texas Election Code 1.005
- Quorum: The number of legislators that must be present to do business.
- Real property: Land, and all immovable fixtures erected on, growing on, or affixed to the land.
- Real property: includes estates and interests in land, whether corporeal or incorporeal or legal or equitable. See Texas Estates Code 22.030
- Registered voter: means a person registered to vote in this state whose registration is effective. See Texas Election Code 1.005
- Remainder: An interest in property that takes effect in the future at a specified time or after the occurrence of some event, such as the death of a life tenant.
- Residence address: means the street address and any apartment number, or the address at which mail is received if the residence has no address, and the city, state, and zip code that correspond to a person's residence. See Texas Election Code 1.005
- Right of survivorship: The ownership rights that result in the acquisition of title to property by reason of having survived other co-owners.
- Service of process: The service of writs or summonses to the appropriate party.
- Settlement: Parties to a lawsuit resolve their difference without having a trial. Settlements often involve the payment of compensation by one party in satisfaction of the other party's claims.
- Signature: includes the mark of a person unable to write, and "subscribe" includes the making of such a mark. See Texas Government Code 312.011
- Statute of limitations: A law that sets the time within which parties must take action to enforce their rights.
- Succeeding: means immediately following. See Texas Government Code 312.011
- Surety: includes a personal surety and a corporate surety. See Texas Estates Code 22.032
- Swear: includes affirm. See Texas Government Code 311.005
- Testator: A male person who leaves a will at death.
- Testify: Answer questions in court.
- Testimony: Evidence presented orally by witnesses during trials or before grand juries.
- Trustee: A person or institution holding and administering property in trust.
- Ward: means a person for whom a guardian has been appointed. See Texas Estates Code 22.033
- Week: means seven consecutive days. See Texas Government Code 311.005
- Writ: A formal written command, issued from the court, requiring the performance of a specific act.