Equitable, Equity

Refers in common law countries to legal rules that originated in what were ecclesiastical (church run) courts, which evolved into courts of chancery and equity, as opposed to courts of law which applied rules established by the state. Such courts applied legal rules that were largely of Roman origin (hence equity’s taste for the use of Latin maxims) and which were predicated on principles of fairness and equity. Equity and law have long been merged in most legal systems, but equity remains a distinct component in common law with different rules and principles of application. The law of equity is administered by judges and not juries, thus equitable aspects of a case will usually be reserved from the jury in common law courts. One basic ‘moral’ principle applied in equity is the clean-hands doctrine

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