Lex Loci Definition and Legal Meaning

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

What is Lex Loci?

“Latin meaning “the law of a place.” In other words, the local law.

History and Meaning of Lex Loci

Lex Loci is a Latin term that means "the law of a place" or the laws of the jurisdiction. This term is commonly used in the legal profession to refer to the law of the state or jurisdiction where a legal dispute arises. The laws of each jurisdiction can vary, and it is important to understand the laws of the location where a dispute occurs.

Examples of Lex Loci

Here are a few examples of Lex Loci in action:

  1. A company operates in multiple states but has a headquarters in New York. When an employment dispute arises in Florida, the court will look at Florida's Lex Loci to decide the case.
  2. A car accident occurs in California, but the individuals involved are from Nevada. The court will look at California's Lex Loci to determine the laws of the state that apply to the case.
  3. A couple divorces in Texas, but they own property in New Mexico. The court will look at Texas's Lex Loci to decide the divorce case, but New Mexico's Lex Loci to decide property issues.

Legal Terms Similar to Lex Loci

Here are a few related terms that are often used in legal proceedings:

  1. Choice of Law - This refers to the process of choosing the law of the jurisdiction applicable to a legal dispute.
  2. Conflict of Law - This refers to the situation in which different laws from multiple jurisdictions come into play in a legal dispute.
  3. Forum Shopping - This is the practice of choosing a jurisdiction with laws that are more favorable to the party in a legal dispute.