courts and procedure

Blue ribbon jury

Blue ribbon jury is sometimes used interchangeably with the term special jury, though it also refers to a specific type of special jury, originating at common law, comprised of specially qualified jurors. The jurors selected for blue ribbon...


Written arguments submitted to the court.

Burden of allegation

A plaintiff must make sufficient assertions of fact in the initial pleading to support a cause of action against a defendant. A party seeking to raise an issue at trial generally bears the burden of proof as to such issue.

Also referred to as "...

Burden of persuasion

The obligation of a party to introduce evidence that persuades the factfinder, to a requisite degree of belief, that a particular proposition of fact is true. In civil cases, a party's burden is usually "by a preponderance of the evidence." In...

Burden of production

A party's obligation to come forward with sufficient evidence to support a particular proposition of fact. Satisfying the burden of production may also be referred to as establishing a prima facie case. Determining whether a party has satisfied its...

Burden of Proof


Generally, describes the standard that a party seeking to prove a fact in court must satisfy to have that fact legally established. There are different standards in different circumstances. For example, in criminal cases, the burden of proving...

Business record exception

Under the Federal Rules of Evidence, Rule 803(6) establishes an exception to the hearsay rule. Under this rule, a party could admit any records of a business (1) that were made in the regular course of business; (2) that the business has a regular...

business records exception

Also known as the Business Entry Rule, this exception to the evidentiary rule (which excludes hearsay from a trial) allows buisness records to be admitted if the proper foundation is laid to show the document is reliable.

The Business...

Civil Forfeiture


Civil forfeiture occurs when the government seizes property under suspicion of its involvement in illegal activity. Such a proceeding is conducted in rem, or against the property itself, rather than in personam, or against the owner of the...



One of multiple defendants jointly sued in the same litigation or charged with the same crime. Also termed joint defendant.