damages - Money that a court orders paid to party (usually
the plaintiff) who has suffered a loss by another party who caused the loss (usually
judgment - One which declares
the rights of the parties or expresses the opinion of the court on a question of law, without ordering anything to
- A decision or order of the court. A
final decree is one which fully and finally disposes of the litigation. An interlocutory decree is a preliminary
decree which is not final.
defamation - The making of false, derogatory statements about a
person's character, morals, abilities, business practices or financial status. (Includes libel, which is written,
and slander, which is spoken).
- Occurs when a defendant fails to
respond to the plaintiff's complaint within the time allowed, or fails to appear at the trial. The court may then
enter a default judgment.
- The accused in a criminal case; the
person from whom money or other recovery is sought in a civil case.
sentence - The court retains
jurisdiction to sentence the defendant at a later time.
deliberation - The jury's decision-making process after hearing
the evidence and closing arguments and being given the court's instructions.
delinquency - The commission of an illegal act by a
child - A child who is
homeless or without proper care through no fault of the parent, guardian, or custodian.
deposition - The taking of testimony of a witness under oath
outside of court, usually transcribed in writing by a court reporter, or less frequently, recorded on
custody - The court transfers
legal custody of a person from parents or legal guardian to another person, agency or institution. It may be
temporary or permanent.
hearing - In Juvenile Court, a
judicial hearing, usually held after the filing of a petition, to determine interim custody of a minor pending a