A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
down payment
A lump sum cash payment paid by a buyer when he or she purchases a major piece of property, such as a car or house. The buyer typically takes out a loan for the balance remaining, and pays it off in monthly installments over time.
draft
(1) A written order for the payment of money, such as a check. The person who writes the draft is called the drawer, the person who holds the money -- for example, the bank -- is called the drawee, and the person who ultimately receives the money is called the payee. After receiving the draft, the payee can demand payment at any time unless the draft specifies a particular time for payment. Also called a bill of exchange. (2) A preliminary version of a written document, such as a law or a legal brief, that is ready for revision or correction. (3) To select for some purpose, such as military service.
driving under the influence (DUI)
The crime of operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs, including prescription drugs. Complete intoxication is not required; the level of alcohol or drugs in the driver's body must simply be enough to prevent him from thinking clearly or driving safely. State laws specify the levels of blood alcohol content at which a person is presumed to be under the influence. Also called driving while intoxicated (DWI and drunk driving).
driving while intoxicated (DWI)
See driving under the influence.
drunk driving
See driving under the influence.
DUI
See driving under the influence.
durable power of attorney
A power of attorney that remains in effect if the principal becomes incapacitated. If a power of attorney is not specifically made durable, it automatically expires if the principal becomes incapacitated. See durable power of attorney for finances; durable power of attorney for healthcare.
durable power of attorney for finances
A legal document that gives someone authority to manage your financial affairs if you become incapacitated. The person you name to represent you is usually called your agent or attorney-in-fact.
durable power of attorney for health care
A legal document that you can use to give someone permission to make medical decisions for you if you are unable to make those decisions yourself. The person you name to represent you may be called an agent, attorney-in-fact, health care proxy, patient advocate, or something similar, depending on where you live.
DWI
Abbreviation for driving while intoxicated. See driving under the influence.
dynamite charge
An judge’s admonition to a deadlocked jury to go back to the jury room and try harder to reach a verdict. The judge might remind the jurors to respectfully consider the opinions of others and will often assure them that if the case has to be tried again, another jury won’t necessarily do a better job than they’re doing. Because of its coercive nature, some states prohibit the use of a dynamite charge as a violation of their state constitution, but the practice passed Federal constitutional muster in the case of Allen v. Gainer. The instruction is also known as a dynamite instruction, shotgun instruction, Allen charge or third degree instruction.