Chapter 4: Enforcing the Law 4 How Can Disputes Be Resolved Privately?
Key Terms 4 Litigate- take their disputes to court 4 Mediator- a third party trying to develop a solution acceptable to both sides of the dispute 4 Arbitrator- hold an informal hearing to determine what happened
What is a Court? 4 Court- a tribunal established to administer justice under the law –decide civil disputes and criminal cases –attempt to use impartial and thorough procedures to make decisions
Two Different Types of Courts 4 Trial Court- 1st court to hear a dispute –witnesses testify and other information is presented to prove the alleged facts. 4 Appellate Court- reviews decisions of trial courts when a party claims an error was made during the trial –doesn’t hear witnesses –limited to correcting errors of law
Court Terms 4 Transcript- copy of the written record of a trial –listen to oral arguments of attorneys –decides if it should be affirmed, reversed, amended, or remanded –Jurisdiction - the authority to decide types of cases.
What Is Our System of Courts? 4 Federal Courts –includes 13 intermediate U.S. courts of appeals. –occur in U.S. district courts –hear cases that involve rights created by the Constitution or by other federal laws 4 State and Local Courts –each have: Supreme Court Trial Courts-named county, circuit, superior, or district courts. Courts of limited jurisdiction-juvenile courts
Court Types 4 Small Claims Court- a civil action for a small amount, up to $3000, can be filed –each party may represent himself or herself –conducted informally, quickly, and economically
How does a Juvenile Court differ from others? 4 Juveniles- persons under the age of majority. –Usually under the age of 18 –juvenile court can transfer to an adult court: to distinguish between right and wrong to understand the legal consequences of his or her acts –juvenile delinquent- child under a specified age who commits a criminal act or is incorrigible 4 Purpose of a juvenile court is: –to determine whether the juvenile committed the offense –to consider ways to rehabilitate the juvenile
What is the Procedure in a Criminal Action? 4 Criminal Action- a lawsuit brought by the State against a person accused of a crime. 4 Proof Beyond a Reasonable Doubt- a standard of proof in which the vast majority of the evidence.
What is the Procedure in a Civil Action? 4 Plaintiff - the party who brings a civil action to enforce a private right 4 Defendant - the party against whom the civil action is brought 4 Complaint - states the plaintiff’s claims, which allegedly justify the relief demanded 4 Deposition - pretrial questioning of the opposing party and witnesses under oath 4 Summons - a court order that directs the defendant to answer the complaint 4 Answer - the defendant’s statement in reply to the complaint 4 Discovery procedures - court ordered means of getting facts about the dispute from the opposing party and witnesses before trial
How is a Civil Case Tried? 4 Jury - body of impartial citizens who listen to the witnesses, review physical evidence, and decide the issues of fact 4 Opening Statements - outline what the plaintiff or the defendant will try to prove 4 Evidence - anything that provides information used to prove or disprove alleged facts 4 Testimony - consists of statements made by witnesses under oath 4 Witness - a person who has personal knowledge of the facts 4 Expert Witness- a witness who possesses superior knowledge about important facts
Civil Case Terms 4 Subpoena - written order by the judge commanding a witness to appear in court to give testimony 4 Contempt of Court - willful, unexcused failure to appear 4 Closing Statements - each attorney summarizes the case, trying to persuade the judge to favor his or her side 4 Instructions to the jury - tell the jury what rules of law to apply to the case 4 Preponderance of the Evidence - a majority of the evidence 4 Judgement - the final result of the trial
How is a Judgement Satisfied? 4 Writ of Execution - process by which a judgement for money is enforced