trial de novo | Definition

Doc's CJ Glossary by Adam J. McKee
Course: Procedural Law

Trial de novo is a type of appeal in which a case is retried as if it had not been heard before, and the decision of the lower court is disregarded.

In some legal systems, a party may request a trial de novo after a case has been heard and decided by a lower court. This means that the case will be retried in a higher court as if it had not been heard before. The decision of the lower court is disregarded, and the higher court will make a new decision based on the evidence presented at the new trial.

Trial de novo may be available in both civil and criminal cases, although the specific rules and procedures may vary depending on the jurisdiction. In some cases, the party requesting the trial de novo may be required to pay a fee or file a motion with the court in order to initiate the process.

One of the benefits of trial de novo is that it provides parties with a second chance to present their case and possibly obtain a more favorable outcome. However, it can also be a lengthy and expensive process, and there is no guarantee that the result of the new trial will be any different than the first.

Overall, trial de novo is an important legal tool that allows parties to seek a second chance at justice. However, it is important to carefully consider the potential costs and benefits before pursuing this option.

Reference:  Barron’s Law Dictionary (2010). Trial de novo.

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Last Modified: 03/14/2023


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