courts and procedure

arm's length

Definition

Of or relating to transactions between two parties who are independent and do not have a close relationship with each other. Presumably, these parties have equal bargaining power and are not subject to undue pressure or influence from the other party. Transactions of this nature do not give rise fiduciary duties between the parties.

 

After-discovered evidence

Definition

In a civil or criminal case, evidence that existed at the time of a motion or trial but that could not have been discovered with reasonable diligence prior to a court ruling upon the motion or the trial's completion. Upon later discovery, a losing party may assert after-discovered evidence, a.k.a. newly discovered evidence, as grounds for a court to reconsider a motion or order a new trial. 

 

 

Admission

Definition

1) A person's, in particular a party's, statement acknowledging that a certain fact is true or silence after another party's assertion of a fact that, if false, would typically elicit a denial. 2) Admission by a party-opponent: an out-of-court statement by a party that is against the party's interest and that is admissible against the party, because admissions by party-opponents are not considered hearsay.

 

administrative law judge (ALJ)

Definition

An independent hearing examiner who presides at an administrative hearing. An ALJ has the power to administer oaths, receive evidence, take testimony, and make initial findings of fact or law. An ALJ’s findings are subject to review and modification by agency heads. Also termed hearing examiner; hearing officer; and trial examiner.

 

Acceptance of service

Definition

Agreement by the defendant (or the defendant's attorney) to accept papers or a complaint without having the papers served by a process server or a sheriff.  Acceptance of service is accomplished by signing a "receipt and acknowledgment of acceptance of service" (or similarly titled instrument).  This satisfies the notice requirement of due process.

 

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