Self Executing Law and Legal Definition

Self-executing refers to rules in an agreement which provide that when a given circumstance occurs, certain specific results must automatically follow. Most such rules simply state that unless a party satisfactorily fulfills a certain rule requirement, the forfeiture of a particular right will result. For example, an employment contract may include a statement that if an employee essential for the business fails to return from furlough within 10 days following recall, he or she will forfeit seniority and be removed from service.

Some statutes and legal rights are self-executing, such as when a person holds property as security and title passes automatically when payments are not made.