Malfeasance: Performance of an act that should not have been done at all. (Compare with misfeasance, nonfeasance)
Mandatory: Required, ordered.
Marital Settlement Agreement: A written contact between spouses who are asking the court to dissolve, legally separate or annul their marriage, concerning the division and ownership of marital property, custody, support, and other issues.
Material: Important(necessary). A material witness or exhibit is one that is useful in deciding an issue.
Mediation: A process in which people that are having a dispute are helped by a neutral person (or people) to communicate so they can reach a settlement acceptable to both. (Compare arbitration, neutral evaluation.)
Medical support: A kind of child support where medical or dental insurance coverage is paid by a parent. Depending on the court order, medical support can be that parent's only financial obligation, or the parent may also have to pay child support and/or spousal or partner support.
Couple in Family Mediation
Memorandum to Set: (Case for Trial): A court document that notifies the parties that the case has been set for trial. This document also states whether the plaintiff has requested a jury trial. (See also at-issue memorandum)
Minor: An individual who is under 18 years of age. The period of minority is calculated from the first minute of the day on which the individual is born to the same minute of the corresponding day completing the period of minority. (California Family Code, Section 6500)
Minute order: The courtroom clerk's written minutes of court proceedings. Copies of the minute orders are usually kept in the case files and the court clerk's office.
Minutes: The official (permanent) record of a court proceeding, that tells things like what witnesses appeared, what motions were made, and what findings were reached. (See also transcript)
Miranda warning: Refers to a U.S. Supreme Court decision that says when a person is arrested or questioned by police, he or she must first be told about certain rights against self-incrimination (saying something that makes it sound like you are guilty).
Misdemeanor: A crime that can be punished by up to 1 year in jail. (See also felony)
Misfeasance: Improper performance of an act that may have been lawfully done. (Compare malfeasance, nonfeasance)
Misrepresentation: The act of making a false or misleading statement about something, usually with the intent to deceive. A statement that is not supported by the facts.
Money judgment: A specific amount of money awarded by the court to a person as payment for damages (losses or injuries) suffered
Motion: An oral or written request that a party makes to the court for a ruling or an order on a particular point. (In family law, compare to Order to Show Cause.)
A "motion to reduce bail" asks the court to lower the amount of bail needed to release the defendant from custody and guarantee that he or she will appear in court when required.
A "motion to release on own recognizance (OR)" asks the court to let a defendant go without paying bail if the defendant agrees to appear when the court tells him or her to.
A "motion to set" asks the judge to set a date for a future trial.
A "motion to quash" asks the court to make something void or ineffective, such as to quash a subpoena.
Motion to Quash Service of Summons: A legal response that a tenant can file in an unlawful detainer lawsuit if the tenant believes that the landlord did not properly serve the summons and complaint.