Talk:Judgment (law)

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Hi I am a student in English common law, in my fist two years at law school I was berated by both tutor and lecturer that the British 'judgement' is reserved for moral resolution. Please see if you could tell me that I didn't suffer in vain. Thanks 01:14, 26 November 2005 (UTC)

If I interpret your question correctly, you state that, in British English, the word "judgment" is used specifically to refer to the outcome of lawsuits whereas the word "judgement" is used to refer to the exercise of intellect which results in some attribution of value and/or a decision that may or may not resolve some problem. Yet, to arrive at a judgment, judges and/or juries have to use their judgement to evaluate the issues in dispute: a curiously paradoxical conundrum if ever there was one. But the technical asnwer you seek is that lawyers use "judgment" as a term of art and the rest of the world does not care which version they use or cannot spell. David91 01:50, 26 November 2005 (UTC)


I am an American and always spelled it "judgement," though I have since come to realize that most of my countrymen do not do this. The moment of truth came when I was doing a crossword puzzle and complained to my teacher that there weren't enough spaces for the word "judgement." She told me that it was customary in the United States not to add the first "e." I was fifteen years old at the time and had had no inkling of this before then.

Stick with "Judgement" mate, it's the Americans mispelling things again. Ashnard talk 18:39, 3 March 2007 (UTC)

Another tiny voice for Judgement here in America. Firefox alerted me to the supposed infraction. I think the other way is silly, but what do I know? --Edwin Herdman 03:00, 6 March 2007 (UTC)

In England the spelling "judgement" is almost always used for general senses of the word, but lawyers use only the spelling "judgment" when referring to the judgment of a court. Don't ask me why. --Cyclopaedic (talkcontribs) 11:23, 15 September 2007 (UTC)

Non-legal senses[edit]

I think the references to non-legal senses of the word should be removed,and the article limited to the legal term, unlesss there is anything encyclopaedic to be said about the general sense. At present it is just a definition, infringnging WP:DICT. Cyclopaedic 22:49, 19 September 2007 (UTC)

Spelling Distinction[edit]

'Judgment' as in condemnation or a determination by any authority is spelled without the 'e'. 'Judgement' as in any other opinion, estimate or discernment is spelled with an 'e'. This according to at least the 1965 edition of Fowler's Modern Use of the English Language. This useful distinction will be lost if we spell this word in either sense indiscriminately.

Fynepointe (talk) 01:53, 7 June 2010 (UTC)

Neither the OED nor Merriam-Webster make any such distinction. --Cybercobra (talk) 02:35, 7 June 2010 (UTC)

It's hardly a "useful" distinction. In what context might you confuse the two? The New Zealanders, for instance, manage well enough. (talk)

Though the distinction may occasionally be useful, where it is generally observed, another point is that readers should be informed that the distinction is made (at least by some) since "unconventional" use of "judgement" in a legal context may be taken as a sign of inexperience. It might be appropriate to express this differently, using words like convention rather than correct.
The Oxford Guide to Style" writes

"Judgment spelt with only one e is correct in the legal sense of a judge's or court's formal ruling, as distinct from a moral or practical deduction (which would take a second 'e'). A judge's judgment is alwas spelt thus . . . In US style judgment is the spelling used in all contexts."

--Boson (talk) 21:09, 29 May 2012 (UTC)