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Can someone please give a clear definition and distinction of these terms, as when a public figure is asked a difficult question and says: "I'll take that on notice" or "I'll take that under advisement."

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So, what, this is the only question you've asked here for which you haven't accepted an answer? What's up with that? – Robusto Oct 15 '15 at 17:29
@Robusto the question hasn't been answered yet :p – jsj Oct 15 '15 at 22:11
grabs heart You're dead to me. ^_^ – Robusto Oct 15 '15 at 22:30

Let me answer your second question first

take something under advisement reserve judgment while considering something.

It's usually used by a judge when he announces he is going to consider what counsel has said and rule on it later.

As for "I'll take that on notice," I haven't heard that used. Usually the term is to "put someone on notice" meaning to alert someone to a fact and to the fact that you have given them some kind of ultimatum:

The police put Niko Bellic on notice that no further racketeering would be tolerated in Liberty City.

It's a way of telling someone "You have been warned."

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+1 Good answer. Putting someone formally "on notice" for acting in violation removes their option to plead ignorance should they re-offend later. – Snubian Apr 12 '11 at 1:47
I think "take on notice" might be an Australianism. It is definitely used here in the OP context. – jsj Apr 12 '11 at 8:41

In Parliament there is a session called Question time where members can ask ministers questions relating to anything. Generally these questions are without notice. That is to say the recipient has been asked a question without the benefit of receiving it earlier and being able to research the answer first. If the answer is not known the Minster can answer by saying that they are taking the question "on notice". In other words, let me find out and get back to you. The reason they word it this way is because the opposite of a question without notice is a question with notice or "on notice".

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"As for "I'll take that on notice," I haven't heard that used" Just today I have heard it used by a seasoned American civil engineer and constructor as he warned a supervisor of poor crew management. So please feel free.

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