The following is an example of a case law defining estoppel by laches : Doctrine of estoppel by laches is the neglect or omission to assert a right for an unreasonable and unexplained length of time, under circumstances prejudicial to an adverse party. A defendant who invokes the doctrine is asserting that the claimant has delayed in asserting its rights, and, because of this delay, is no longer entitled to bring an equitable claim. The Legal Term * Laches, Doctrine Of * Defined & Explained. An equitable doctrine used by the courts to bar a legal claim or prevent the assertion of a right because of undue delay, negligence, or failure to assert the claim or right. [McNeir v. McNeir, 178 Va. 285, 291 (Va. 1941)] If the removal of this witness severely limits the breaching party’s defense potential or causes significant economic harm, then they can use a laches … For example, in the state of Arkansas, a person can only bring forth a rape claim if the incident has allegedly occurred within six years of the date the claim was filed with the courts. In other words, a party cannot deny a fact that has already been settled as truth. LACHES, DOCTRINE OF. Previous Next. Based on the maxim that equity aids the vigilant and not those who procrastinate regarding their rights; Neglect to assert a right or claim that, together with lapse of time and other circumstances, prejudices an … The doctrine of laches is derived from the maxim that the law helps the vigilant before those who sleep on their rights. The Doctrine of Laches, however, is more concerned with why a claim was made with such a delay. For example, if a key witness is sick or elderly, then the plaintiff may try to wait until the person passes to begin legal procedures. Previous Next > More Real Estate Definitions. The individual right to own real estate. Laches is an equitable form of estoppel based on delay. Laches is a form of estoppel for delay. Failure to assert one's rights in a timely manner can result in claims being barred by laches: it is a maxim of equity that, "Equity aids the vigilant, not the negligent." The theory behind allowing the defense is that the law shouldn't aid those who "sleep on their rights". A property owner who is lax in protecting ownership rights may lose those rights. What is the effect of the Doctrine of Laches? Previous Next. The legal principal of estoppel keeps a party from alleging a fact or acting in a certain way, then attempting to claim something in opposition to that fact or action later in the proceeding to suit their purposes. Real Estate Glossary Term Laches. This court used a four-part test for laches which was drawn from a Florida Supreme Court decision which applied the laches doctrine in a real estate context. Laches is an equitable defense, or doctrine. An equitable doctrine used by the courts to bar a legal claim or prevent the assertion of a right because of undue delay, negligence, or failure to assert the claim or right. ... for example, from residential to commercial, a property owner would ask the zoning board for a(n) amendment. Estoppel meaning in law.