Nunc Pro Tunc Definition and Legal Meaning

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

What is Nunc Pro Tunc?

It means ” now for then”. It is used to express the thing or action that should have been taken at much earlier date or time, but was oversighted or forgotten or accidently missed and is to take place now. Such judgements are passed only for it to be the basis of doing justice and with prior order from the court.It is applicable in adoption law, divorce laws, bankruptcy laws and wherever there had been mistaken or clerical ommisions which can affect the course of action of the court judgement, reverting to which can seek justice.

History and Meaning of Nunc Pro Tunc

Nunc Pro Tunc is a Latin phrase that means "now for then". It is a legal term used to describe a court order that allows an action to be recorded as though it had been taken at an earlier time. The purpose of Nunc Pro Tunc is to correct an oversight or error that occurred in the past and to ensure that justice is served.

Courts use Nunc Pro Tunc to correct clerical errors or omissions. If a legal document was not filed on time due to a mistake or an oversight, the court may grant a Nunc Pro Tunc order to allow the document to be filed as though it had been filed on time. This saves the affected party from any negative consequences of the mistake, such as losing the right to appeal a decision.

Examples of Nunc Pro Tunc

  1. In a divorce case, if a judge failed to enter a final decree of divorce, a party can ask for a Nunc Pro Tunc order to have the decree entered as of the original hearing date.

  2. In a bankruptcy case, if a debtor's attorney failed to file a discharge order, the court may grant a Nunc Pro Tunc order to make the discharge effective as of the date of the order.

  3. In an adoption case, if a judge failed to sign an order terminating parental rights, a Nunc Pro Tunc order can be used to correct the mistake and allow the adoption to proceed.

Legal Terms Similar to Nunc Pro Tunc

  1. Retrospective: A similar term that refers to something happening or being applied from a past point in time.

  2. Equitable estoppel: A legal doctrine that prevents a party from taking a position that is contrary to his or her past conduct, especially if that position would be detrimental to the other party.

  3. Laches: A legal defense that applies when a party unreasonably delays filing a claim or taking action, resulting in prejudice to the other party.