Definitions from Black's Law Dictionary: 2nd Edition and Ballentine's Law Dictionary as are available for each term in each dictionary.
  • Ballentine's Law Dictionary

    Property or funds which may be subjected to the meeting of one,s obligations. See 51 Am. St. Rep. 887; also 5 L. R. A. (N. S.) 358, note.

  • Black's Law Dictionary: 2nd Edition

    In probate law. Property of a decedent available for the payment of debts and legacies; the estate coming to the heir or personal representative which Is chargeable, in law or equity, with the obligations which such heir or representative is required, in his representative capacity, to discharge. In an accurate and legal sense, all the personal property of the deceased which is of a salable nature, and may be converted into ready money, is deemed assets. But the word is not confined to such property ; for all other property of the deceased which is chargeable with his debts or legacies, and is applicable to that purpose, is, in a large sense, assets. 1 Story, Eq. Jur. § 531; Marvin v. Railroad Co. (C. C.) 49 Fed. 436; Trust Co. v. Earle, llO U. S. 710, 4 Sup. Ct 231, 28 L Ed. 301. Assets per descent. That portion of the ancestor's estate which descends to the heir, and which is sufficient to charge him, as far as it goes, with the specialty debts of his ancestors. 2 Williams, Exits, 1011. In commercial law. The aggregate of available property, stock in trade, cash, etc., belonging to a merchant or mercantile company. The word "assets," though more generally used to denote everything which comes to the representatives of a deceased person, yet is by no means confined to that use, but has come to signify everything which can be made available for the payment of debts, whether belonging to the estate of a deceased person or uot. Hence we speak of the assets of a bank or other monied corporation, the assets of an insolvent debtor, and the assets of an individual or private copartnership; and we always use this word when we speak of the means which a party has, as compared with his liabilities or debts. Stanton v Lewis, 26 Conn. 449; Vaiden v. Hawkins, 59 bliss. 419 ; Pelican v. Rock Falls, 81 Wis. 42a 51 N. W. 871, 52 N. W. 1049. The property or effects of a bankrupt or insolvent, applicable to the payment of his debts. The term "assets" includes all property of every kind and nature, chargeable with the debts of the bankrupt, that comes into the hands of and under the control of the assignee ; and the value thereof is not to be considered a less sum than that actually realized out of said property, and received by the assignee for it. In re Taggert, 16 N. B. R. 351, Fed. Cas. No. 13,725.
    —Assets entre mains. In Fr. Assets in band ; assets in the bands of executors or administratore, applicable for the payment of debts. Termes de la Ley; 2 BL. Comm. 510; I Crabb, Real Prop. 23; Favorite v. Booher, 17 Ohio St. 557.-
    —Equitable assets. Equitable assets are all assets which are chargeable with the payment of debts or legacies in equity, and which do not fall under the description of legal assets. 1 Story, Eq. Jur. § 552. Those portions of the property which by the ordinary rules of law are exempt from debts, but which the testator has voluntarily charged as assets, or which, being non-existent at Jaw, have been created in equity. Adams, Eq. 254, et seq. They are so called because they can be reached only by the aid and instrumentality of a court of equity, and because their distribution is governed by a different rule from that which governs the distribution of legal assets. 2 JTonbl. Eq. hi 4, pt. 2, c. 2, § 1, and notes; Story, Eq. Jur. § 552.
    —Legal assets. That portion of the assets of a deceased party which by law is directly liable, in the hands of his executor or administrator, to the payment of debts and legacies. 1 Story, Eq. Jur. § 551. Such assets as can be reached in the hands of an executor or administrator, by a suit at law against him.
    —Personal assets. Chattels, money, and other personal property belonging to a bankrupt, insolvent, or decedent estate, which go to the assignee or executor.
    —Real assets. Lands or real estate in the hands of an heir, chargeable with the payment of the debts of the ancestor. 2 Bl. Comm. 244, 302.