Answered By: Alison Gowers
Last Updated: Oct 26, 2018     Views: 311

The answer depends on the jurisdiction. 

For Australian law, try the legal dictionaries on Lexis Advance Pacific Research.

Type your term in the search box.  Limit your search using the filters on the left.  First limit to AU Analytical Materials then limit by either Content Type or Publication

  • Australian Encyclopaedic Legal Dictionary - will give you a plain language definition supported by reference to the source in cases and legislation.  
  • Australian Legal Words and Phrases - will tell you where you can find definitions within the primary sources.

You can also try using Words and Phrases on WestlawAU, which also provides links to terms judicially considered:

  1. Go to 'Cases'
  2. Select Advanced Search > More options > Words and Phrases

If you need definitions from other jurisdictions you might find the Dictionaries & Encyclopedias  page on our Law Subject Guide useful.

There are also print legal dictionaries available in the Craven and St Benedict's Libraries.