Arbiter

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ARBITER

[Latin, One who attends something to view it as a spectator or witness.] Any person who is given an absolute power to judge and rule on a matter in dispute.

An arbiter is usually chosen or appointed by parties or by a court on their behalf. The decision of an arbiter is made according to the rules of law and equity. The arbiter is distinguished from the arbitrator, who proceeds at his or her own discretion, so that the decision is made according to the judgment of a reasonable person.

An arbiter may perform the same function as an umpire, a person who decides a controversy when arbitrators cannot agree.

cross-references

Alternative Dispute Resolution; Arbitration.

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ar·bi·ter / ˈärbitər/ • n. a person who settles a dispute or has ultimate authority in a matter: the military acted as arbiter of conflicts between political groups. ∎  (usu. arbiter of) a person whose views or actions have great influence over trends in social behavior: an arbiter of taste.

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arbiter XV. — L.
So arbitrage XV. — (O)F. arbitrament, arbitrement XIV. — (O)F. — medL. arbitrary XV. — L., perh. after (O)F. arbitraire. arbitrate XVI. f. pp. stem of L. arbitrārī. arbitration XIV. — (O)F. — L. arbitrator XIV. — late L.