Definition - What does Vacatur mean?

Vacatur is a Latin word closely related to the modern English word "vacate." It is used to describe any legal action, such as a ruling or court order, which effectively rescinds, voids or annuls a previous decision. As such, it is a broad term that can be used in several different contexts.

Justipedia explains Vacatur

One of the most common examples of vacatur is a winning appeal in a criminal case. Upon a successful appeal, the punishment is officially withdrawn and removed from the defendant's record.

Numerous states have created vacatur laws for use in human trafficking and/or sex trafficking cases. In these cases, the laws provide relief for victims who were forced to engage in, arrested for, and convicted of criminal offenses—including but not limited to prostitution.

In housing disputes, there are certain circumstances in which tenants facing eviction can seek a vacatur of judgment. There are also circumstances in which landlords have the same recourse.

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