appellate procedure


A bar that prevents one from asserting a claim or right that contradicts what one has said or done before, or what has been legally established as true. Estoppel may be used as a bar to the relitigation of issues or as an affirmative defense.


Estoppel in Pais

Definition from Nolo’s Plain-English Law DictionarySee: equitable estoppel

Definition provided by Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary.

Final Judgment

The last decision from a court that resolves all issues in dispute and settles the parties' rights with respect to those issues. A final judgment leaves nothing except decisions on how to enforce the judgment, whether to award costs, and whether to...

First Impression

A new legal issue or interpretation that is brought before a court. In a case of first impression, the exact issue before the court has not been addressed by that court, or within that court's jurisdiction, thus there is no binding authority on that...

Harmless Error

An error by a judge in the conduct of a trial that an appellate court finds was not damaging enough to the appealing party's right to a fair trial to justify reversing the judgment. Harmless errors include technical errors that have no bearing on the...

Ineffective Assistance of Counsel

The Supreme Court has held that part of the right to counsel is a right to effective assistance of counsel. Proving that their lawyer was ineffective at trial is a way for convicts to get their convictions overturned, and therefore ineffective...

King's Bench


Historically, the highest court in England during the reign of a king (called the Queen's Bench during the reign of a queen). Also called Court of King's Bench and Coram Rege Court. Abbreviated as K.B.

Illustrative caselaw

See, e.g....

lower court

Any court that is inferior to another court. Lower courts usually consist of trial courts and intermediate appellate courts, which issue decisions that are subject to review or to appeal to a higher (appellate) court. For example, the U.S. Circuit...



A (writ of) mandamus is an order from a court to an inferior government official ordering the government official to properly fulfill their official duties or correct an abuse of discretion. (See, e.g. Cheney v. United States Dist. Court For D....


In appellate cases, the document by which the court of appeals formally notifies the district court of its decision and by which jurisdiction for any necessary additional proceedings is conferred upon the district court.