Legal Dictionary


Legal Definition of mandate

  1. A formal communication from a reviewing court notifying the court below of its judgment and directing the lower court to act accordingly
  2. "mandamus"
  3. (Civil Law of Louisiana) An act by which a person gives another person the power to transact for him or her one or several affairs
  4. An authoritative command: a clear authorization or direction
  5. The authorization to act given by a constituency to its elected representative
  6. To make mandatory or required

Related terms

Definition of mandate


    Noun is from Latin mandatum ("a charge, order, command, commission, injunction"), neut of. mandatus, pp. of mandare ("to commit to one's charge, order, command, commission, literally to put into one's hands") < manus ("hand") + dare ("to put"). Cf. command, commend, demand, remand.
    Verb is from the noun.



mandate (plural mandates)

  1. An official or authoritative command; an order or injunction; a commission; a judicial precept.


to mandate (third-person singular simple present mandates, present participle mandating, simple past and past participle mandated)

  1. to authorize

Derived terms

  • mandatee
  • mandator

Further reading

Mandate (international law)

In international law, a mandate is a binding obligation issued from an inter-governmental organization like the United Nations to a country which is bound to follow the instructions of the organization.

Before the creation of the United Nations, all mandates were issued from the League of Nations. An example of such a mandate would be Australian New Guinea, which is officially the Territory of Papua.

Mandate (criminal law)

A criminal court may impose a "mandate" on a person accused of a crime consisting of an obligation to engage in certain conditions or activities in exchange for suspension or reduction in penalty; such as, conditions of probation, conditional discharges, or other conditional sentences. For example, a defendant convicted of driving while intoxicated or drug possession may be mandated to engage in alcoholism or substance abuse rehabilitation. The term is paradoxical because acceptance of the "mandate" is, in fact, a voluntary act by the defendant, who also has the option of serving what would most generally (though the relative weight is a matter determined by the individual's perspective and readiness to change) be viewed as a harsher alternative, such as incarceration. In this sense, the mandate is in fact not truly mandatory, but is instead a type of legal fiction wherein the court assumes an illusion of power which, in actuality, is constrained by the defendant's free will.

Mandate (politics)

In politics, a mandate is the authority granted by a constituency to act as its representative.[1]

The concept of a government having a legitimate mandate to govern via the fair winning of a democratic election is a central idea of democracy. New governments who attempt to introduce policies that they did not make public during an election campaign are said to not have a legitimate mandate to implement such policies.

Elections, especially ones with a large margin of victory, are often said to give the newly elected government or elected official a mandate to implement certain policies. Also, the period a government serves between elections is often referred to as a mandate and when the government seeks re-election it is said to be seeking a "new mandate".


  1. Wiktionary. Published under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

Translation of mandate in Malay


Noun and Verb

  1. mandat


1.     scienter
2.     quorum
3.     AORO
4.     adjudication order
5.     appellant
6.     lex patriae
7.     Miranda warning
8.     lex causae
9.     lex domicilii
10.     lex situs