Demurrer

Business, Legal & Accounting Glossary

Definition: Demurrer


Quick Summary of Demurrer


An objection that an opponent’s point is irrelevant or invalid, while granting the factual basis of the point.




What is the dictionary definition of Demurrer?

Dictionary Definition


(law) a formal objection to an opponent’s pleadings

  1. Someone who demurs or objects
  2. A motion by a party to an action, for the immediate or summary judgment of the court on the question, whether, assuming the truth of the matter alleged by the opposite party, it is sufficient in law to sustain the action or defense, and hence whether the party resting is bound to answer or proceed further.

n. (dee-muhr-ur) a written response to a complaint filed in a lawsuit which, in effect, pleads for dismissal on the point that even if the facts alleged in the complaint were true, there is no legal basis for a lawsuit. A hearing before a judge (on the law and motion calendar) will then be held to determine the validity of the demurrer. Some causes of action may be defeated by a demurrer while others may survive. Some demurrers contend that the complaint is unclear or omits an essential element of fact. If the judge finds these errors, he/she will usually sustain the demurrer (state it is valid), but “with leave to amend” in order to allow changes to make the original complaint good. An amendment to the complaint cannot always overcome a demurrer, as in a case filed after the time allowed by law to bring a suit. If after amendment the complaint is still not legally good, a demurrer will be granted sustained. In rare occasions, a demurrer can be used to attack an answer to a complaint. Some states have substituted a motion to dismiss for failure to state a cause of action for the demurrer.


Full Definition of Demurrer


A request made to a court, asking it to dismiss a lawsuit on the grounds that no legal claim is asserted. For example, you might file a demurrer if your neighbour sued you for parking on the street in front of her house. Your parking habits may annoy your neighbour, but the curb is public property and parking there doesn’t cause any harm recognized by the law. After a demurrer is filed, the judge holds a hearing at which both sides can make their arguments about the matter. The judge may dismiss all or part of the lawsuit or may allow the party who filed the lawsuit to amend its complaint. In some states and in federal court, the term demurrer has been replaced by “motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim” (called a “12(b)(6) motion” in federal court) or similar term.


Synonyms For Demurrer


demur, demurral, defence, defense, denial

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Demurrer. PayrollHeaven.com. Payroll & Accounting Heaven Ltd. https://payrollheaven.com/define/demurrer/ (accessed: September 24, 2021).
American Psychological Association (APA):
Demurrer. PayrollHeaven.com. Retrieved September 24, 2021, from PayrollHeaven.com website: https://payrollheaven.com/define/demurrer/

Definition Sources


Definitions for Demurrer are sourced/syndicated and enhanced from:

  • A Dictionary of Economics (Oxford Quick Reference)
  • Oxford Dictionary Of Accounting
  • Oxford Dictionary Of Business & Management

This glossary post was last updated: 27th April, 2020 | 0 Views.