Tyson Law Firm
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Hertford, NC 27944
Key Terms Used in the Courtroom
Read over these key terms to get a better understanding of words you may hear when you go to trial.
Plaintiff- the term used in some jurisdictions for the party who initiates a lawsuit before a court
Defendant-any person accused of committing an offense, an act defined as punishable under criminal law
Complaint-any formal legal document that sets out the facts and legal reasons that the filing party or parties believes are sufficient to support a claim against the party or parties against whom the claim is brought the defendant that entitles the plaintiff to a remedy
Summons-an order to appear before a judge or magistrate, or the writ containing it.
Pleadings-formal written statement of a party's claims or defenses to another party's claims
Pretrial conference-meeting of the parties to an action and their attorneys held before the court prior to the commencement of actual courtroom proceeding
Mediation-a practice in which an individual trains the mind or induces a mode of consciousness, either to realize some benefit or as an end in itself
Arbitration-form of alternative dispute resolution, is a technique for the resolution of disputes outside the courts, where the parties to a dispute refer it to one or more persons, by whose decision they agree to be bound
Trial- a formal examination of evidence before a judge, and typically before a jury, in order to decide guilt in a case of criminal or civil proceedings
Preponderance of evidence-the greater weight of the evidence required in a civil lawsuit for the trial of fact to decide in favor of one side or the other
Verdict-the decision in a court case
Appeal-apply to a higher court for a reversal of the decision of a lower court.