Extrajudicial Remedies – may be obtained without a court:

     This page is continued from Civil Law Self-Help >>>> Section 3: Which form(s) of relief are you seeking from the court to help remedy the situation? >>>> Remedies:



1. That which occurs aside from or independent of the court or of judicial action outside of the court’s jurisdiction; outside of the courtroom. [1]

1. Aside from or without the intervention of a court; outside of the court’s jurisdiction. [2]

extrajudicial remedy:

1. A remedy not obtained from a court, such as repossession. — aka self-help remedy. [3]

n. (1831)

1. Taking matters into one’s own hands, i.e., obtaining a remedy without recourse to legal process.  (EXAMPLE under the Uniform Commercial Code, a secured party has the right to take possession of the collateral in the event of default.)  However, self-help is a doctrine of extremely limited application.
     See also necessity. [1]

1. A controverted doctrine in reference to escaping from the custody of an officer which is unlawful. 27 Am J2d Escape §§ 7, 12.
     See self-preservation. [2]

1. An attempt to redress a perceived wrong by ones’ own action rather than through the normal legal process.  *  The UCC and other statutes provide for particular self-help remedies (such as repossession) if the remedy can be executed without breaching the peace. UCC § 9-609. — aka self-redress; extrajudicial enforcement.  Cf claim-of-right defense under DEFENSE (1). [3]



1. That which is necessary; that which must be done.
     See certificate of need; way of necessity; work of necessity.

2. That which is compelled by natural forces and cannot be resisted.  necessity is a defense in a criminal prosecution if the defendant committed the crime to prevent a more serious harm from occurring.  EXAMPLE: reckless driving by a driver, to avoid the gunshots of officers who are attempting to make an unlawful arrest, may not be a crime. [1]

self-help doctrine – an attempt to redress a perceived wrong by one’s own action rather than through the normal legal process.— aka self-redress; extrajudicial enforcementUCC § 9-609.

Int’l law.

1. The instinct of protecting one ‘s self against danger.  The desire to live; the instinct which generally prompts men to acts of care and caution when approaching or in the presence of danger. Wabash R. Co. v De Tar (CA8 Iowa) 141 F 932.

The instinct from which the presumption of the care of one’s own protection arises. 38 Am J1st Negl § 337. [2]

1. The right of a state to engage in unilateral action in response to a compelling need to allow the state to endure in one form or another.  *  Although self-preservation is often equated with military action, it need not entail the use of military force.

2. The unilateral action itself. [3]

     Excerpt from James A. Green’s “Self-Preservation,” in 9 The Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law 128, 129 (Rüdiger Wolfrum ed., 2012):

     “In its narrowest form, the term ‘self-preservation’ has been used as  synonym for the concept of necessity…. In this incarnation, self-preservation constitutes a unilateral action taken in response to a situation of ‘grave and imminent peril’ affecting the ‘essential interests’ of the responding State…. This allows for States to preclude the use of military force against States that were not themselves necessarily in breach of international law, to secure the interests of the invoking State.  More commonly, self-preservation has been employed in a broader sense; this is an interpretation that includes the concept of necessity, but is not limited to it.  therefore, self-preservation is perhaps best understood as an ‘umbrella’ term.  it should be seen as a label that encompasses a range of concepts that all possess a good deal more specifically under contemporary international law than self-preservation does itself.  Traditionally, then, self-preservation has encompassed the following legal concepts: self-defence, counter-measures (either in te form of reprisals or self-help) and necessity.[4]


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[1]: [3]:  Ballantine’s Law Dictionary Legal Assistant Edition
by Jack Ballantine (James Arthur 1871-1949).  Doctored by Jack G. Handler, J.D. © 1994 Delmar by Thomson Learning.  ISBN 0-8273-4874-6.

[2]: Ballantine’s Law Dictionary with Pronunciations Third Edition by James A. Ballantine (James Arthur 1871-1949).  Edited by William S. Anderson.  © 1969 by THE LAWYER’S CO-OPERATIVE PUBLISHING COMPANY.  Library of Congress Catalog Card No. 68-30931

[3]: Black’s Law Dictionary Deluxe Tenth Edition by Henry Campbell Black, Editor in Chief Bryan A. Garner. ISBN: 978-0-314-61300-4

[4]: James A. Green’s “Self-Preservation,” in 9 The Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law 128, 129 (Rüdiger Wolfrum ed., 2012).


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