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– Washington DC Family Law Dictionary


ICARA – the International Child Abduction Remedies Act, an international law that brings about the return of children under the Hague Convention.

IMMUNE ASSETS – property exempt from distribution between spouses in marital dissolution.

IMPANEL JURY – the process by which a court clerk makes a roster of jurors selected by voir dire, a French term meaning “to speak the truth.”

IMPEACHMENT – the act of proving a witness is not credible due to inconsistent statements or other conflicting evidence.

IMPLIED CONTRACT – an equitable remedy whereby a court will find that an implicit understanding exists between two parties has the force of an explicit written agreement.

IMPUTED INCOME – a concept often applied to one or both parents during child support calculations.

IN CAMERA – when preceedings are held in the chambers of a judge without the participating parties. This is usually the procedure followed when children testify.

INCARCERATION – confinement in a prison, usually for a long time.

INCOME AND EXPENSE DECLARATION – the form completed by a parent under oath stating that parent’s income, assets, expenses and liabilities. The document is used to help determine child support to be paid by the non – custodial parent.

INCOMPETENCE – when a party becomes incapable of managing his or her affairs, usually for mental reasons.

INCORPORATION – part of civil law, making one document part of another. For example, the Agreement becomes part of the Decree in Divorce.

INDEMNIFICATION; INDEMNIFY – a guarantee or promise that provides security against loss or damage on account of enumerated debts or obligations or from actions arising from these debts or obligations.

IN GROSS – without deduction or division, for example, alimony, which is paid without deduction of income taxes due from the recipient.

“IN KIND’’ BENEFIT – refers to benefits given in other than money, such as a company-car, housing, clothing, frequent flier miles for employment-related travel.

INHERITANCE; INHERITANCE RIGHTS; INHERITANCE EXPECTANCIES – general terms covering what a child expects to inherit from his parents.

INHERITED PROPERTY – property conveyed from one person to another as an inheritance.

INJUNCTION – a court order preventing someone from doing a particular act which is likely to cause physical, mental injury or property loss of another individual.

IN LOCO PARENTIS – a Latin phrase meaning “in place or in lieu of a parent.”

INNOCENT SPOUSE; INNOCENT SPOUSE RULE – section 434(c)(1) of the Internal Revenue Code protects an innocent spouse from tax fraud prosecution under certain conditions.

INSURABLE INTEREST – the requisite connection between the one person and another person whose life is insured, as in the case of a financially dependent spouse or former spouse and children in the life of a former spouse.

INSURANCE – agreements that protect against the losses resulting from death or disability.

INTANGIBLE ASSETS – items of personal property; examples; franchises, trademarks, patents, copyrights, goodwill.

INTANGIBLE VALUE – a value that cannot be imputed to any part of the physical property.

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY – intangible but valuable.

INTERCEPT – a process by which CSE agencies take part of a noncustodial parent’s unemployment insurance payments, disability insurance payments, income tax returns and lottery gains to pay child support arrearages owed by the noncustodial parent.

INTEREST – a general term meaning a right, claim, title or share of something.

INTENTIONAL TORT – an act committed willfully to create a tort, or a private wrong against another party.

INTER ALIA – a Latin phrase meaning “among other things’’; used frequently in law.

INTERLOCUTORY HEARING – any hearing at which a pretrial or court ruling is requested.

INTERROGATORIES – a group of questions served upon the opposing party to gain knowledge pertaining to the issues in the matrimonial proceedings.

INTERSTATE CUSTODY – when divorced parents live in different states.

INTERSPOUSAL GIFTS – presents and gifts between spouses.

INVENTORY AND APPRAISEMENT – a listing and valuation of properties owned by the parties seeking a divorce.

INTER VIVOS – a Latin phrase meaning “between the living”; used frequently in law.

INTESTATE; LAW OF INTESTACY – said of a person who dies without a will.

INVESTMENT ANALYSIS – a process in which the attractiveness of an investment is measured by analyzing ratios.

IRA – an individual retirement account, which must be “rolled over” in a divorce to avoid a tax penalty.

IRREVOCABLE BENEFICIARY STATUS – a status conferred by irreversible declaration affixing that a person named as a beneficiary of a contract, plan, or shall not be replaced by another.