Marshal Law Law & Legal Definition


Marshal is subject to different meanings. In one sense, it refers to a federal court official whose duties may include serving papers, enforcing the law and  keeping order in court, protecting federal officials, making arrests or participating in court-ordered police activities. Each district court has a federal marshal. Marshals also exist in several states, who is a law enforcement officer, with duties similar to a sheriff or constable, and may serve official documents and occasionally assists in police matters.

Marshal may also refer to the act of amassing the assets of the estate of a person who has died. This duty to marshal the assets of the deceased is carried out by an executor or administrator of an estate. As part of the marshaling process, an executor or administrator may ask the court to allow the sale or division of gifts made in the will. Finally, marshal, in the context of bankruptcy, means to establish priorities among creditors.