Contract: A legal written agreement that becomes binding when signed.
Defendant: In a civil suit, the person complained against; in a criminal case, the person accused of the crime.
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.
Juror: A person who is on the jury.
Litigation: A case, controversy, or lawsuit. Participants (plaintiffs and defendants) in lawsuits are called litigants.
Misdemeanor: Usually a petty offense, a less serious crime than a felony, punishable by less than a year of confinement.
Trial: A hearing that takes place when the defendant pleads "not guilty" and witnesses are required to come to court to give evidence.