Comity Law and Legal Definition

Comity refers to the recognition which one nation allows within its territory to the legislative, executive, or judicial acts of another nation, having due regard both to international duty and convenience, and to the rights of its own citizens, or of other persons who are under the protection of its laws. This is also termed as comitas gentium; courtoisie internationale.

Comity is the legal doctrine under which countries recognize and enforce each others legal decrees. Courts of justice in one state will, out of comity, enforce the laws of another state, when by such enforcement they will not violate their laws or inflict an injury on their own citizens. For example, the discharge of a debtor under the insolvent laws of one state will be respected in another state, where there is reciprocity in this respect.