Common Legal Terms in the Courtroom

Legal term

Many people are interesting in learning and understanding legal definitions, either because they plan on being involved in a courtroom case, or because they want to be more informed when they read about litigation and legislation that goes through courts. Here are some basic legal vocabulary terms you may want to aquaint yourself with, as they come up fairly frequently.

What is an acquittal? This is either a judge finding that there is insufficient evidence to make a conviction, or a jury finding that a defendant is not guilty.

What is an affidavit? This legal term is a statement made under oath, either written or printed.

What is a contingent claim? This is a debt claim that falls under certain circumstances. For example, two people cosign on a loan, and the debtor is the one that fails to pay.

What is disposition? The disposition legal definition is the final determination of a court for a proceeding.

What is the exclusionary rule? This is a doctrine to protect defendants. If evidence is obtained in violation of rights of the defendant, it is not admissible.

What is liquidation? This is when the property of a debtor is sold so that the proceeds can be portioned out to creditors.

What is pro se? This legal terms is latin for representing yourself, or being your own lawyer..

What is the standard of proof? These law definitions refer to the amount of proof required in a case, and is different for criminal cases, which must be beyond a reasonable doubt, than civil lawsuits, which require a preponderance of evidence, which means more than 50 percent.

What is a statute of limitations? These legal terms are a deadline by which a lawsuit or criminal prosecution has to begin. Rape cases, for example, usually have a five year statute.

What is a subpoena? This legal terms is a court order for a witness to give testimony.

What is a tort? This refers to a civil wrong, in other words, injury against people or property that is not criminal.

What is undue harship? This is an evaluation test used to determine whether it is possible for a debtor to maintain a minimal standard of living while repaying the owned loans

These are a few key legal terms you should be familiar with. To learn more, I recommend using a legal terms dictionary, or a law dictionary online free.

Leave a Reply