Chapter 41 Administrative Office of United States Courts
Chapter 42 Federal Judicial Center
Chapter 43 United States Magistrate Judges
Chapter 44 Alternative Dispute Resolution
Chapter 45 Supreme Court
Chapter 47 Courts of Appeals
Chapter 49 District Courts
Chapter 51 United States Court of Federal Claims
Chapter 55 Court of International Trade
Chapter 57 General Provisions Applicable to Court Officers and Employees
Chapter 58 United States Sentencing Commission

Terms Used In U.S. Code > Title 28 > Part III

  • Administrator: means the person appointed by the Secretary under section 4234 of this title. See 50 USC 4232
  • affected Aleut villages: means the surviving Aleut villages of Akutan, Atka, Nikolski, Saint George, Saint Paul, and Unalaska, and the Aleut village of Attu, Alaska. See 50 USC 4232
  • 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.
  • Affirmed: In the practice of the appellate courts, the decree or order is declared valid and will stand as rendered in the lower court.
  • 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 28 USC 451
  • 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 18 USC 6
  • Allegation: something that someone says happened.
  • Amendment: A proposal to alter the text of a pending bill or other measure by striking out some of it, by inserting new language, or both. Before an amendment becomes part of the measure, thelegislature must agree to it.
  • Annuity: A periodic (usually annual) payment of a fixed sum of money for either the life of the recipient or for a fixed number of years. A series of payments under a contract from an insurance company, a trust company, or an individual. Annuity payments are made at regular intervals over a period of more than one full year.
  • 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.
  • Appraisal: A determination of property value.
  • armed forces: shall be deemed to include the Army, the Navy, the Marine Corps, the Air Force, and the Coast Guard. See 50 USC 3814
  • Arrest: Taking physical custody of a person by lawful authority.
  • association: when used in reference to a corporation, shall be deemed to embrace the words "successors and assigns of such company or association" in like manner as if these last-named words, or words of similar import, were expressed. See 1 USC 5
  • Association: means the Aleutian/Pribilof Islands Association, Inc. See 50 USC 4232
  • Attachment: A procedure by which a person's property is seized to pay judgments levied by the court.
  • Bail: Security given for the release of a criminal defendant or witness from legal custody (usually in the form of money) to secure his/her appearance on the day and time appointed.
  • Bailiff: a court officer who enforces the rules of behavior in courtrooms.
  • Bankruptcy: Refers to statutes and judicial proceedings involving persons or businesses that cannot pay their debts and seek the assistance of the court in getting a fresh start. Under the protection of the bankruptcy court, debtors may discharge their debts, perhaps by paying a portion of each debt. Bankruptcy judges preside over these proceedings.
  • Bequest: Property gifted by will.
  • Budget authority: Authority provided by law to enter into obligations that will result in outlays of Federal funds. Budget authority may be classified by the period of availability (one-year, multiyear, no-year), by the timing of congressional action (current or permanent), or by the manner of determining the amount available (definite or indefinite).
  • Chief judge: The judge who has primary responsibility for the administration of a court but also decides cases; chief judges are determined by seniority.
  • Clerk of court: An officer appointed by the court to work with the chief judge in overseeing the court's administration, especially to assist in managing the flow of cases through the court and to maintain court records.
  • Commission: means the United States Sentencing Commission. See 28 USC 998
  • Commission: means the Foreign Claims Settlement Commission of the United States established pursuant to Reorganization Plan Numbered 1 of 1954 (68 Stat. See 50 USC 4131
  • Complaint: A written statement by the plaintiff stating the wrongs allegedly committed by the defendant.
  • Concurrent resolution: A legislative measure, designated "S. Con. Res." and numbered consecutively upon introduction, generally employed to address the sentiments of both chambers, to deal with issues or matters affecting both houses, such as a concurrent budget resolution, or to create a temporary joint committee. Concurrent resolutions are not submitted to the President/Governor and thus do not have the force of law.
  • Conference: shall mean the Judicial Conference of the United States. See 28 USC 639
  • Continuance: Putting off of a hearing ot trial until a later time.
  • Corporation: means the Aleut Corporation, a for-profit regional corporation for the Aleut region organized under the laws of the State of Alaska and established under section 1606 of title 43. See 50 USC 4232
  • Council: shall mean the Judicial Council of the Circuit. See 28 USC 639
  • court of the United States: includes the Supreme Court of the United States, courts of appeals, district courts constituted by chapter 5 of this title, including the Court of International Trade and any court created by Act of Congress the judges of which are entitled to hold office during good behavior. See 28 USC 451
  • courts: includes the courts of appeals and district courts of the United States, the United States District Court for the District of the Canal Zone, the District Court of Guam, the District Court of the Virgin Islands, the United States Court of Federal Claims, and the Court of International Trade. See 28 USC 610
  • courts: include the Supreme Court of the United States and the courts enumerated in section 610 of this title. See 28 USC 963
  • Deed: The legal instrument used to transfer title in real property from one person to another.
  • 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 18 USC 6
  • 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 28 USC 451
  • Devise: To gift property by will.
  • Director: shall mean the Director of the Administrative Office of the United States Courts. See 28 USC 639
  • Director: shall be deemed to mean the Director of the Selective Service System. See 50 USC 3814
  • Discovery: Lawyers' examination, before trial, of facts and documents in possession of the opponents to help the lawyers prepare for trial.
  • district court of the United States: shall be deemed to include the courts of the United States for the Territories and possessions of the United States. See 50 USC 3814
  • Docket: A log containing brief entries of court proceedings.
  • eligible Aleut: means any Aleut living on August 10, 1988--

    (A) who, as a civilian, was relocated by authority of the United States from his or her home village on the Pribilof Islands or the Aleutian Islands west of Unimak Island to an internment camp, or other temporary facility or location, during World War II. See 50 USC 4232

  • Entitlement: A Federal program or provision of law that requires payments to any person or unit of government that meets the eligibility criteria established by law. Entitlements constitute a binding obligation on the part of the Federal Government, and eligible recipients have legal recourse if the obligation is not fulfilled. Social Security and veterans' compensation and pensions are examples of entitlement programs.
  • Ex officio: Literally, by virtue of one's office.
  • Executor: A male person named in a will to carry out the decedent
  • Fair market value: The price at which an asset would change hands in a transaction between a willing, informed buyer and a willing, informed seller.
  • Felony: A crime carrying a penalty of more than a year in prison.
  • financial institution: means --

    (1) an insured depository institution (as defined in section 3(c)(2) of the Federal Deposit Insurance Act). See

  • Foreclosure: A legal process in which property that is collateral or security for a loan may be sold to help repay the loan when the loan is in default. Source: OCC
  • foreign government: as used in this title except in sections 112, 878, 970, 1116, and 1201, includes any government, faction, or body of insurgents within a country with which the United States is at peace, irrespective of recognition by the United States. See
  • Forgery: The fraudulent signing or alteration of another's name to an instrument such as a deed, mortgage, or check. The intent of the forgery is to deceive or defraud. Source: OCC
  • Full-time magistrate judge: shall mean a full-time United States magistrate judge. See 28 USC 639
  • Fund: means the Aleutian and Pribilof Islands Restitution Fund established in section 4233 of this title. See 50 USC 4232
  • Garnishment: Generally, garnishment is a court proceeding in which a creditor asks a court to order a third party who owes money to the debtor or otherwise holds assets belonging to the debtor to turn over to the creditor any of the debtor
  • Gift: A voluntary transfer or conveyance of property without consideration, or for less than full and adequate consideration based on fair market value.
  • Grand jury: agreement providing that a lender will delay exercising its rights (in the case of a mortgage,
  • Guarantor: A party who agrees to be responsible for the payment of another party's debts should that party default. Source: OCC
  • 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.
  • guidelines: means the guidelines promulgated by the Commission pursuant to section 994(a) of this title. See 28 USC 998
  • Habeas corpus: A writ that is usually used to bring a prisoner before the court to determine the legality of his imprisonment. It may also be used to bring a person in custody before the court to give testimony, or to be prosecuted.
  • In forma pauperis: In the manner of a pauper. Permission given to a person to sue without payment of court fees on claim of indigence or poverty.
  • 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.
  • Injunction: An order of the court prohibiting (or compelling) the performance of a specific act to prevent irreparable damage or injury.
  • judge of the United States: includes judges of the courts of appeals, district courts, Court of International Trade and any court created by Act of Congress, the judges of which are entitled to hold office during good behavior. See 28 USC 451
  • judicial district: means the districts enumerated in Chapter 5 of this title. See 28 USC 451
  • Law clerk: Assist judges with research and drafting of opinions.
  • Lien: A claim against real or personal property in satisfaction of a debt.
  • local board: shall be deemed to include an intercounty local board in the case of any registrant who is subject to the jurisdiction of an intercounty local board. See 50 USC 3814
  • magistrate judge: shall mean both full-time and part-time United States magistrate judges. See 28 USC 639
  • Magistrate judges: Judicial officers who assist U.S. district judges in getting cases ready for trial, who may decide some criminal and civil trials when both parties agree to have the case heard by a magistrate judge instead of a judge.
  • member of the former ruling family: means (1) any person who was at any time between April 6, 1917, and July 2, 1921, the German Emperor or the ruler of any constituent kingdom of the German Empire, or (2) the wife or any child of such person. See 50 USC 4328
  • Minority leader: See Floor Leaders
  • Misdemeanor: Usually a petty offense, a less serious crime than a felony, punishable by less than a year of confinement.
  • Mortgage: The written agreement pledging property to a creditor as collateral for a loan.
  • oath: includes affirmation, and "sworn" includes affirmed. See 1 USC 1
  • Oath: A promise to tell the truth.
  • organization: means a person other than an individual. See 18 USC 18
  • organized unit: when used with respect to a reserve component, shall be deemed to mean a unit in which the members thereof are required satisfactorily to participate in scheduled drills and training periods as prescribed by the Secretary of Defense. See 50 USC 3814
  • Part-time magistrate judge: shall mean a part-time United States magistrate judge. See 28 USC 639
  • Personal property: All property that is not real property.
  • Petty offense: A federal misdemeanor punishable by six months or less in prison. Source: U.S. Courts
  • Plaintiff: The person who files the complaint in a civil lawsuit.
  • 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.
  • Plea agreement: An arrangement between the prosecutor, the defense attorney, and the defendant in which the defendant agrees to plead guilty in exchange for special considerations. Source:
  • Pleadings: Written statements of the parties in a civil case of their positions. In the federal courts, the principal pleadings are the complaint and the answer.
  • Power of attorney: A written instrument which authorizes one person to act as another's agent or attorney. The power of attorney may be for a definite, specific act, or it may be general in nature. The terms of the written power of attorney may specify when it will expire. If not, the power of attorney usually expires when the person granting it dies. Source: OCC
  • 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
  • President pro tempore: A constitutionally recognized officer of the Senate who presides over the chamber in the absence of the Vice President. The President Pro Tempore (or, "president for a time") is elected by the Senate and is, by custom, the Senator of the majority party with the longest record of continuous service.
  • Probation: A sentencing alternative to imprisonment in which the court releases convicted defendants under supervision as long as certain conditions are observed.
  • Probation officers: Screen applicants for pretrial release and monitor convicted offenders released under court supervision.
  • Property: means real property and such items of tangible personalty as can be identified and evaluated. See 50 USC 4131
  • Prosecute: To charge someone with a crime. A prosecutor tries a criminal case on behalf of the government.
  • Public law: A public bill or joint resolution that has passed both chambers and been enacted into law. Public laws have general applicability nationwide.
  • Quorum: The number of legislators that must be present to do business.
  • Real property: Land, and all immovable fixtures erected on, growing on, or affixed to the land.
  • Remainder: An interest in property that takes effect in the future at a specified time or after the occurrence of some event, such as the death of a life tenant.
  • Reporter: Makes a record of court proceedings and prepares a transcript, and also publishes the court's opinions or decisions (in the courts of appeals).
  • Restitution: The court-ordered payment of money by the defendant to the victim for damages caused by the criminal action.
  • rules and regulations: means rules and regulations promulgated by the Commission pursuant to section 995 of this title. See 28 USC 998
  • Secretary: means the Secretary of the Interior. See 50 USC 4232
  • Sentencing guidelines: A set of rules and principles established by the United States Sentencing Commission that trial judges use to determine the sentence for a convicted defendant. Source: U.S. Courts
  • Service of process: The service of writs or summonses to the appropriate party.
  • Statute: A law passed by a legislature.
  • Statute of limitations: A law that sets the time within which parties must take action to enforce their rights.
  • subscription: includes a mark when the person making the same intended it as such. See 1 USC 1
  • Testify: Answer questions in court.
  • Testimony: Evidence presented orally by witnesses during trials or before grand juries.
  • Tort: A civil wrong or breach of a duty to another person, as outlined by law. A very common tort is negligent operation of a motor vehicle that results in property damage and personal injury in an automobile accident.
  • Transcript: A written, word-for-word record of what was said, either in a proceeding such as a trial or during some other conversation, as in a transcript of a hearing or oral deposition.
  • Trial: A hearing that takes place when the defendant pleads "not guilty" and witnesses are required to come to court to give evidence.
  • Trustee: A person or institution holding and administering property in trust.
  • unallocated interest fund: means the sum of (1) the earnings and profits accumulated prior to March 4, 1923, and attributable to investments and reinvestments under section 4312 of this title by the Secretary of the Treasury, plus (2) the earnings and profits accumulated on or after March 4, 1923, in respect of the earnings and profits referred to in clause (1) of this section. See 50 USC 4325
  • United States: when used in a geographical sense, shall be deemed to mean the several States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, and Guam. See 50 USC 3814
  • 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 18 USC 5
  • vehicle: includes every description of carriage or other artificial contrivance used, or capable of being used, as a means of transportation on land. See 1 USC 4
  • whoever: include corporations, companies, associations, firms, partnerships, societies, and joint stock companies, as well as individuals. See 1 USC 1
  • World War II: means the period beginning on December 7, 1941, and ending on September 2, 1945. See 50 USC 4232
  • Writ: A formal written command, issued from the court, requiring the performance of a specific act.
  • Yugoslavia: when used in their respective geographical senses, mean the territorial limits of each such country or free territory, as the case may be, in continental Europe as such limits existed on December 1, 1937. See 50 USC 4131