noun, plural eq·ui·ties.

  1. the quality of being fair or impartial; fairness; impartiality: the equity of Solomon.
  2. something that is fair and just: the equities of our criminal-justice system.
  3. Law.
    1. Also called chancery.the application of the dictates of conscience or the principles of natural justice to the settlement of controversies.
    2. Also called chancery.a system of jurisprudence or a body of doctrines and rules developed in England and followed in the U.S., serving to supplement and remedy the limitations and the inflexibility of the common law.
    3. an equitable or legally valid right or claim.
    4. equity of redemption.
  4. the monetary value of a property or business beyond any amounts owed on it in mortgages, claims, liens, etc.: Over the years, they have carefully avoided tapping into their home equity for unnecessary expenses.
  5. Informal. ownership, especially when considered as the right to share in future profits or appreciation in value.
  6. the interest of the owner of common stock in a corporation.
  7. (in a margin account) the excess of the market value of the securities over any indebtedness.
  8. (initial capital letter) Actors’ Equity Association.

noun plural -ties

  1. the quality of being impartial or reasonable; fairness
  2. an impartial or fair act, decision, etc
  3. law a system of jurisprudence founded on principles of natural justice and fair conduct. It supplements the common law and mitigates its inflexibility, as by providing a remedy where none exists at law
  4. law an equitable right or claimequity of redemption
  5. the interest of ordinary shareholders in a company
  6. the market value of a debtor’s property in excess of all debts to which it is liable


  1. the actors’ trade unionFull name: Actors’ Equity Association

early 14c., from Old French equite (13c.), from Latin aequitatem (nominative aequitas) “equality, conformity, symmetry, fairness,” from aequus “even, just, equal” (see equal). As the name of a system of law, 1590s, from Roman naturalis aequitas, the general principles of justice which corrected or supplemented the legal codes.

A body of rules or customs based on general principles of fair play rather than on common law or statutory law.

In real estate, the financial value of someone’s property over and above the amount the person owes on mortgages. For example, if you buy a house for $100,000, paying $20,000 down and borrowing $80,000, your equity in the house is $20,000. As you pay off the principal of the loan, your equity will rise.

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