a non habente potestatem (ay non ha-ben-tee poh-tes-tay-t<<schwa>>m). [Latin] Scots law.
From one not having power. • This phrase appeared most commonly in a conveyance in reference
to a seller who was not the owner.
“If A. disponed ground, which he held on a personal title, to B., he could not grant warrant
for the infeftment of B., himself being uninfeft; but he could assign to B. the unexecuted precept
of sasine in his (A.’s) own favour, and on it B. could complete his feudal title. If, instead of thus
assigning a valid precept, A. himself granted a precept for the infeftment of B., such a precept was
a non habente potestatem, and ineffectual. This was a defect, however, which was remedied by
prescription.” John Trayner, Trayner’s Latin Maxims 5 (4th ed. 1894). [Blacks Law 8th]