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27 Cards in this Set

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  • Back
Jurisdiction
The right to interpret and apply the law; a court's range of authority.
Exclusive Jurisdiction
the authority of the federal courts alone to hear and rule in certain cases.
Concurrent Jurisdiction
the authority to hear cases shared by federal and state courts.
Original Jurisdiction
the court's authority to hear and decide a case for the first time.
Appellate Jurisdiction
the court's authority to hear cases on appeal.
Civil Law
The type of law dealing with the rights and relationships of private citizens.
Plaintiff
A person who files suit in a civil case.
Defendant
One against whom a legal charge has been made.
Criminal Law
The type of law dealing with crimes and providing for their punishment.
Judicial Review
The power of the courts to establish the constitutionality of national, state, or local acts of government.
Strict Constructionist
The view that judges ought to base their decisions on a narrow interpretation of the language of the constitution
Loose Constructionist
the view that judges have considerable freedom in interpreting the constitution.
Constitutional Law
the type of law relating to the interpretation of the Constitution.
Writ of Mandamus
a court order that commands a government official to take a particular action.
Constitutional Court
a federal court with constitutionally based powers and whose judges serve for life. The most important are the supreme Court, the courts of appeal, and the district courts.
Legislative Court
a specialized court established to hear cases about and executes the legislative powers of congress
grand jury
a group of people who evaluate whether there is enough evidence against a person to order him or her to stand trial.
petit jury
a jury that decides an individual's innocence or guilt; a trial jury
senatorial courtesy
the practice in which a presidential nomination is submitted initially for approval to the senators from the nominee's sate
writ of certiorari
literally, "made more certain"; an order from a higher court requiring a lower court to send the record of a case for review.
majority opinion
the view of the supreme Court justices who agree with a particular ruling.
dissenting opinion
a Supreme Court opinion by one or more justices in the minority who oppose the ruling.
concurring opinion
a Supreme Court opinion by one or more justices who agree with the majority's conclusion but wish to offer differing reasons
precedent
a judicial decision that is used as a standard in later similar cases
stare decisis
literally, "let the decision stand"; the practice of basing legal decisions on established Supreme Court Precedents from similar cases.
judicial activism
the belief that Supreme court justices should actively make policy and sometimes redefine the Constitution
judicial restraint
the belief that Supreme Court justices should not actively try to shape social and political issues or redefine the Constitution