Affidavit: A written statement of facts confirmed by the oath of the party making it, before a notary or officer having authority to administer oaths.
agency: includes any department, independent establishment, commission, administration, authority, board or bureau of the United States or any corporation in which the United States has a proprietary interest, unless the context shows that such term was intended to be used in a more limited sense. See
Appeal: A request made after a trial, asking another court (usually the court of appeals) to decide whether the trial was conducted properly. To make such a request is "to appeal" or "to take an appeal." One who appeals is called the appellant.
Appellate: About appeals; an appellate court has the power to review the judgement of another lower court or tribunal.
Appropriation: The provision of funds, through an annual appropriations act or a permanent law, for federal agencies to make payments out of the Treasury for specified purposes. The formal federal spending process consists of two sequential steps: authorization
Chambers: A judge's office.
Contract: A legal written agreement that becomes binding when signed.
Conviction: A judgement of guilt against a criminal defendant.
Defendant: In a civil suit, the person complained against; in a criminal case, the person accused of the crime.
department: means one of the executive departments enumerated in section 1 of Title 5, unless the context shows that such term was intended to describe the executive, legislative, or judicial branches of the government. See
Felony: A crime carrying a penalty of more than a year in prison.
Guardian: A person legally empowered and charged with the duty of taking care of and managing the property of another person who because of age, intellect, or health, is incapable of managing his (her) own affairs.
Indictment: The formal charge issued by a grand jury stating that there is enough evidence that the defendant committed the crime to justify having a trial; it is used primarily for felonies.
individual: shall include every infant member of the species homo sapiens who is born alive at any stage of development. See
Jurisdiction: (1) The legal authority of a court to hear and decide a case. Concurrent jurisdiction exists when two courts have simultaneous responsibility for the same case. (2) The geographic area over which the court has authority to decide cases.
Layover: Informal term for a period of delay required by rule. For example, when a bill or other measure is reported from committee, it may be considered on the floor only after it "lies over" for one legislative day and after the written report has been available for two calendar days. Layover periods may be waived by unanimous consent.
officer: includes any person authorized by law to perform the duties of the office. See
organization: means a person other than an individual. See
Plea: In a criminal case, the defendant's statement pleading "guilty" or "not guilty" in answer to the charges, a declaration made in open court.
Presentence report: A report prepared by a court's probation officer, after a person has been convicted of an offense, summarizing for the court the background information needed to determine the appropriate sentence. Source: U.S. Courts
Probation: A sentencing alternative to imprisonment in which the court releases convicted defendants under supervision as long as certain conditions are observed.
Restitution: The court-ordered payment of money by the defendant to the victim for damages caused by the criminal action.
Settlement: Parties to a lawsuit resolve their difference without having a trial. Settlements often involve the payment of compensation by one party in satisfaction of the other party's claims.
Statute: A law passed by a legislature.
Trial: A hearing that takes place when the defendant pleads "not guilty" and witnesses are required to come to court to give evidence.
United States: as used in this title in a territorial sense, includes all places and waters, continental or insular, subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, except the Canal Zone. See
Writ of certiorari: An order issued by the Supreme Court directing the lower court to transmit records for a case for which it will hear on appeal.
writing: includes printing and typewriting and reproductions of visual symbols by photographing, multigraphing, mimeographing, manifolding, or otherwise. See