Latin for "as if." Commonly used as a prefix to show that one thing resembles, but is not actually, another thing. For example, a quasi-contract resembles, but is not actually, a contract.
See, e.g. Humphrey's Ex'r v. United States, 295 U.S. 602 (1935).
Definition from Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary
(kwah-zee, kway-zeye) From the Latin for "as if," almost, somewhat, to a degree. Quasi is always used in combination with another word and refers to things and actions which are not exactly or fully what they might appear, but are treated "as if" they were. (See, for example: quasi-community property, quasi contract, quasi corporation, quasi-criminal, quasi in rem, quasi-judicial)
Definition provided by Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary.
August 19, 2010, 5:22 pm