acte (akt), n. [French] French law.

1. An instrument; a proof in writing, such as a deed, bill of sale, or birth cer-tificate.

acte authentique (akt oh-tawn-teek). A deed executed with certain prescribed formalities, in the presence of a notary or other official.

acte de d¨¦c¨¨s (akt d[schwa] day-say). A death certificate.

acte de francisation (akt d[schwa] frangk-[schwa]-za-syawn). A certificate confirming that a ship is of French nationality.

acte de mariage (akt d[schwa] mar-yahzh). A marriage certificate.

acte de naissance (akt d[schwa] nay-s[schwa]nts). A birth certificate.

acte de notori¨¦t¨¦. A deposition made before a notary to record and preserve a claim, usu. to property. ? Historically, most actes de notori¨¦t¨¦ were conducted to establish the identity and genealogy of a purported heir. The deposi-tions were subject to exclusion as hearsay. But an acte de notori¨¦t¨¦ may also appear in a chain of title. See United States v. Repentigny, 72 U.S. 211 (1866).

acte extrajudiciaire (akt eks-tr[schwa]-zhuu-dee-syair). A document served by a huissier at the request of one party on another party without legal proceedings. See HUISSIER(1).

l’acte de l’¨¦tat civil (lakt d[schwa] lay-tah see-veel). A public document relating to status (e.g., birth, divorce, death).

2. An act; conduct.

acte d’h¨¦ritier (akt day-ri-tyay). [French ¡°act of an heir¡±] Conduct by an heir indicating an intent to accept the succession.

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Carl, Chinese legal translator, specializes in translating legal documents pertaining to complex business disputes.