Then, the defendant presents a defense, with or without the assistance of a lawyer. He may testify, present evidence and question his own witnesses. However, the defendant may choose to remain silent and not to testify in his or her own defence. Statement – An oral statement made before an official legally authorized to take the oath. Such statements are often used to hear potential witnesses, to obtain discoveries, or to be used later in the trial. Common Law – The legal system that originated in England and is now used in the United States. It is based on court decisions and not on laws adopted by the legislator. The prosecutor cannot force an accused to testify. The right to remain silent exists in part because the accused is presumed innocent until proven guilty and cannot be forced to violate his or her record by testifying against himself.
Jurisprudence – The study of the law and the structure of the legal system. Jurisdiction – (1) The legal power of a court to hear and decide a case. Concurrent jurisdiction occurs when two courts have jurisdiction in the same case at the same time. Some issues may be heard in state and federal courts. The plaintiff first decides where to sue, but in some cases, the defendant may try to change courts. 2. The geographical area in which the General Court has jurisdiction to rule on cases. A federal court in a state, for example, can usually rule on only one case arising from acts committed in that state. The defendant is therefore not obliged to testify in order to defend himself. It can simply remain silent. Indictment – A trial in which a person accused of committing a crime is brought to justice, informed of the charges and asked to plead guilty or not guilty. The defendant has the right to remain silent at all stages of the criminal proceedings, from his arrest by the police to the end of the proceedings.
If the defendant does not specify his language, the judge may order that the trial be conducted in the language he seems to understand best. In this way, the judge ensures that the accused receives a fair trial. Convicting a person of a crime cannot be taken lightly. For this reason, the law guarantees the defendant certain fundamental rights that must be respected until the judge or jury makes a decision. Lawsuit – A lawsuit brought by a plaintiff against a defendant based on a claim that the defendant failed to comply with a legal obligation, resulting in harm to the plaintiff. When the defendant appears before a judge for the first time, the judge must inform him of the right to choose the language of the trial and tell him how long he must make this decision. Usually, he has to decide before they set a date for the process. The defendant also has the right to act alone without a lawyer. If the defendant does so, the judge can offer assistance in ensuring that the trial is fair, for example, by briefly explaining the different stages of the case.
If necessary, the judge may have a lawyer to assist the defendant in ensuring that the process runs smoothly. A criminal trial takes place in English, French and sometimes in both languages. A defendant may request that the trial be conducted in the official language of his or her choice. If the accused`s mother tongue is not English or French, she may request that the trial be conducted in one of these two languages, with which she feels more comfortable. However, the judge cannot force a witness to speak in the language chosen by the defendant. In this case, an interpreter will be provided. Defendant – In a civil action, the person has complained against him; in criminal proceedings, the person accused of the offence. A witness may testify in English or French, regardless of the language chosen by the defendant. The prosecutor must inform the accused of all the evidence against him before the start of the trial, including the names of the witnesses who will testify. (« Testimony » means answering questions about a case). Oral Hearing – An opportunity for lawyers to summarize their views in court in an appeal and also to answer questions from judges.
For example, if the defendant chooses English as the language of the trial: the right to a lawyer applies from the beginning to the end of a criminal case. The defendant may therefore be represented in court for assistance in the defence. Written pleadings – Written observations of the parties in a civil case concerning their positions. In federal courts, the most important pleadings are the complaint and the response. In Canada, a person charged with a crime is presumed innocent until convicted by a judge or jury. This is called the « presumption of innocence. » The defendant usually has to pay for his lawyer. However, a low-income defendant could be eligible for state legal aid. In other, rarer cases, the judge may provide a lawyer to the defendant free of charge. This may be the case, for example, if the defendant is not entitled to legal aid, but the judge considers that the assistance of a lawyer is necessary for the trial to be fair. Bail – guarantee for the release of a criminal accused or a witness from pre-trial detention (usually in the form of money) in order to guarantee his appearance on the day and time fixed. The accused has the right to defend himself against the charge of having committed a crime.
In order to prepare an adequate defence, he has the right to know all the evidence that the prosecutor has against him. When the trial begins, the prosecutor first presents the evidence and questions the witnesses who testify against the accused. Then the defendant or his lawyer can question the witnesses. If the accused decides to remain silent, judges and jurors are generally not allowed to interpret this as evidence of guilt. In Canada, a person is presumed innocent until convicted. The prosecutor must prove guilt « beyond any doubt. » If a witness testifies in a language that is not the defendant`s, the defendant or his or her lawyer may request an interpreter so that the defendant can understand the testimony. Although the accused has the right to remain silent, he or she may choose to testify in his or her own defence. If he does, he will be questioned by his own lawyer and then by the prosecutor. Sometimes, however, there are certain questions that the prosecutor cannot ask the accused. The Glossary of Legal Terms defines more than 100 of the most common legal terms in easy-to-understand language.
The terms are listed in alphabetical order and can be best retrieved by selecting a letter here: if the defendant has difficulty understanding and speaking English or French, or is deaf, an interpreter will be provided free of charge. This means she can testify in her own language and understand what is going on. Habeas Corpus – A memoir often used to bring a prisoner to justice to determine the lawfulness of his detention. A prisoner who wants to argue that there is no sufficient reason to be detained would file a writ of arrest in habeas corpus. It can also be used to bring a person into custody to court, to testify or to be prosecuted. Tribunal – a government body empowered to settle disputes. Judges sometimes use the term « court » to refer to themselves in the third person, as in « the court read the pleadings. » Other measures are available to facilitate the testimony of persons under the age of 18 and persons with physical or mental disabilities (also known as « intellectual disabilities »). Record – A written record of all actions and proceedings in a dispute. According to the Supreme Court in Elonis v. United States, 575 U.S. __ (2015), if a law does not prescribe a certain state of mind, a court will deduce the « mens rea necessary to separate illegal behavior from innocent behavior. » Capital crime – A crime that can be punished with death.
In the federal system, crimes such as first-degree murder, genocide and treason apply. Intent is also sometimes at the heart of contracts when a court establishes the existence of a contract or interprets the term or conditions of a contract. In these situations, the courts determine the objective intent of the parties by examining the language used in the contract when it was concluded; The subjective or secret intent of the parties is ignored. If the wording of the contract is ambiguous, the parol rule of evidence allows courts to take extrinsic evidence into account when determining the intention of the parties. Box – A conference between the judge and the lawyers that was held outside the ear of the jury and spectators.