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Explanation: I HATE this rendering, but it is found in a glossary maintained by a Brazilian law firm for which I once worked.
The problem with "legal transaction" and "legal matter" is that they may be too specific in the case at hand. I was struggling with this problem just this week (and it is not because I don't understand the term....after all these years w/ legal translations).
Well, now that I read my Maria Helena Diniz, I find I DON"T understand the term the way she defines it: COPY (no accents) 'o poder de auto-regulacao dos interesses que contem a enunciacao de um preceito, independentemente do querer interno (Bulow). E uma norma concreta estabelecida pelas partes.
Chaves de Mello in her new edition avoids including this one.....
-------------------------------------------------- Note added at 10 hrs (2007-03-29 13:23:07 GMT) --------------------------------------------------
What I was faced with this week was more like a generic legal ACT, not a transaction
Theodore, here is why I suggested it: Law Dictionary Library > Legal > Law Dictionary "Subject Matter" - The thing in dispute; the nature of the cause of action; "the real issue of fact or law presented for trial as between those parties" 62 P. 2d 1248, 1252; the object of a contract.
I think the definition quoted by Thais is almost perfect: "Negócio jurídico é toda ação ou omissão humana cujos efeitos jurídicos derivam essencialmente da manifestação de vontade." (Almost, because, for example, if your dog bites someone, would this not be a "negôcio jurídico"?) However, how "subject matter" encompasses all aspects of this definition is beyond me. It seems more like a workaround when N.J. is used in the place of "lide" (Cause of action)
Mr. Steinmetz' comments are also very erudite. My Italian, German and Latin are not, alas, up to the task of deciding on them. For example, can "Negozio" be understood as "thing" as "Negôcio" can in Portuguese?
Donna Sandin's suggestion of Legal Event sounds very promising. And thank you for your kind words, Donna.
Thanks, too, to Tom Thumb for reminding us that making a will is also a N.J.
Mr. Steinmetz is correct and I apologize to Mr. Copeland and anyone else who may feel offended. (My "With all due respect" obviously did not cut it.)
I have just finished a 20k word translation about various aspects of the "Negôcio Jurídico", which was the title heading.
True, we all come across this expression in our work and can get around translating it most of the time; so much so that it has not even ever been asked in this arena!!
But here I had to face it squarely and actually try to find an expression to translate it.
To me, the closest at this time is probably Ms. Sandin's although I, like Ms. sandin herself, don't like the term and would be adverse to using it.
It isn't a legal act since that is somewhat different; but maybe a juristic act.
How about a legal fact? That just occurred to me. (Eureka, huh?)
A legal transaction is definitely a Negôcio Jurídico. However not every Negôcio Jurídico is a transaction. (I understand the "negôcio" part of the expression not as negotiation or business or transaction but as "thing". I think "legal thing" might even translate the expression perfectly - except that it's unusable.)
Legal matter is actually one I myself actually came up with as a working hypothesis but it doesn't really work.
Please excuse my rambling. I am actually trying to encourage you all to come up with something that has eluded translators up to now.
It would seem a bit supercilious to suggest that an answerer doesn't understand the term if s/he asks for context. The Roman law concept has been adapted, and so it can be expressed in different ways. Some people even leave it untranslated.
This is a technical legal term and concept.
If you need context, with all due respect , you do not understand the term. Books have been written and laws have been drafted on the "Negôcio Jurídico", not to mention 384,000 hits in Google!
I need a precise translation.
Thanks for your help.