Terms Used In Illinois Compiled Statutes > Chapter 705 > Juries
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.
Answer: The formal written statement by a defendant responding to a civil complaint and setting forth the grounds for defense.
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
Bailiff: a court officer who enforces the rules of behavior in courtrooms.
Chief judge: The judge who has primary responsibility for the administration of a court but also decides cases; chief judges are determined by seniority.
Common law: The legal system that originated in England and is now in use in the United States. It is based on judicial decisions rather than legislative action.
Continuance: Putting off of a hearing ot trial until a later time.
County board: means the board of county commissioners in counties not under township organization, and the board of supervisors in counties under township organization, and the board of commissioners of Cook County. See Illinois Compiled Statutes 5 ILCS 70/1.07
Defendant: In a civil suit, the person complained against; in a criminal case, the person accused of the crime.
Discovery: Lawyers' examination, before trial, of facts and documents in possession of the opponents to help the lawyers prepare for trial.
Extradition: The formal process of delivering an accused or convicted person from authorities in one state to authorities in another state.
Felony: A crime carrying a penalty of more than a year in prison.
Grand jury: agreement providing that a lender will delay exercising its rights (in the case of a mortgage,
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.
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.
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.
Juror: A person who is on the jury.
Lawsuit: A legal action started by a plaintiff against a defendant based on a complaint that the defendant failed to perform a legal duty, resulting in harm to the plaintiff.
Litigation: A case, controversy, or lawsuit. Participants (plaintiffs and defendants) in lawsuits are called litigants.
Petit jury: A group of citizens who hear the evidence presented by both sides at trial and determine the facts in dispute. Federal criminal juries consist of 12 persons. Federal civil juries consist of six persons.
Plaintiff: The person who files the complaint in a civil lawsuit.
police force: shall be construed to include such persons in the employ of a municipality as members of the department of police, who are or shall hereafter be appointed and sworn as policemen. See Illinois Compiled Statutes 5 ILCS 70/1.20
Statute: A law passed by a legislature.
Summons: Another word for subpoena used by the criminal justice system.
Trial: A hearing that takes place when the defendant pleads "not guilty" and witnesses are required to come to court to give evidence.
True bill: Another word for indictment.
Verdict: The decision of a petit jury or a judge.
Voir dire: The process by which judges and lawyers select a petit jury from among those eligible to serve, by questioning them to determine knowledge of the facts of the case and a willingness to decide the case only on the evidence presented in court. "Voir dire" is a phrase meaning "to speak the truth."