Acquire: when used in connection with a grant of power to any person, includes the acquisition by purchase, grant, gift or bequest. See Wisconsin Statutes 990.01
Adjourn: A motion to adjourn a legislative chamber or a committee, if passed, ends that day's session.
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.
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.
Appraisal: A determination of property value.
Arraignment: A proceeding in which an individual who is accused of committing a crime is brought into court, told of the charges, and asked to plead guilty or not guilty.
Chief judge: The judge who has primary responsibility for the administration of a court but also decides cases; chief judges are determined by seniority.
Civil forfeiture: The loss of ownership of property used to conduct illegal activity.
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.
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.
Contract: A legal written agreement that becomes binding when signed.
Impeachment: (1) The process of calling something into question, as in "impeaching the testimony of a witness." (2) The constitutional process whereby the House of Representatives may "impeach" (accuse of misconduct) high officers of the federal government for trial in the Senate.
Inter vivos: Transfer of property from one living person to another living person.
Intestate: Dying without leaving a will.
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.
Juror: A person who is on the jury.
Lease: A contract transferring the use of property or occupancy of land, space, structures, or equipment in consideration of a payment (e.g., rent). Source: OCC
Pretrial conference: A meeting of the judge and lawyers to discuss which matters should be presented to the jury, to review evidence and witnesses, to set a timetable, and to discuss the settlement of the case.
Service of process: The service of writs or summonses to the appropriate party.
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.
Testate: To die leaving a will.
Testimony: Evidence presented orally by witnesses during trials or before grand juries.
Trustee: A person or institution holding and administering property in trust.
United States: includes the District of Columbia, the states, the commonwealth of Puerto Rico and the territories organized by congress. See Wisconsin Statutes 990.01
Verdict: The decision of a petit jury or a judge.
Victim advocate: work with prosecutors and assist the victims of a crime.
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."
Writ: A formal written command, issued from the court, requiring the performance of a specific act.