Intervene Definition and Legal Meaning

On this page, you'll find the legal definition and meaning of Intervene, written in plain English, along with examples of how it is used.

What is Intervene?

1\. It refers to interference by force or untimed or unexpected entry. 2. In law, it refers to the entering as a third party in the lawsuit by taking the court’s permission. The court allows such intervention by the third party claiming what the first two parties are claiming, only after it is verified what interest does the third party hold and that he/she is not entering in the lawsuit just to hamper or harm the case of the first two parties.

History and Meaning of Intervene

Intervene refers to the action of getting involved in a situation to alter or regulate the outcome. The term has roots in Latin, with the prefix “inter-” meaning “between” or “among”. In law, it refers to the involvement of a third party, with the court’s permission, in an ongoing lawsuit. The third party, or intervenor, has a legal interest in the matter and could be negatively impacted if the case were to proceed without their involvement. Intervening in a lawsuit allows the third party to protect their legal rights and interests.

Examples of Intervene

  1. A bystander may intervene in a physical altercation in order to stop the fight and prevent further harm to others.

  2. A government may intervene in a failing industry in order to provide financial support and prevent widespread job loss.

  3. In a custody battle, a grandparent may seek to intervene in the case in order to secure their right to visitation with their grandchildren.

  4. A citizen may intervene in a zoning dispute if they believe it will negatively impact their property values.

Legal Terms Similar to Intervene

  1. Amicus Curiae - A person or organization that is not a party to a lawsuit but provides information to the court to help them decide the case.

  2. Subpoena - A legal order that requires a person to provide testimony or documents in a lawsuit.

  3. Injunction - A court-ordered directive that requires a person or entity to stop or take action in a particular matter.