Pretrial –

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1. Prior to trial.  “Pretrial” is applied to any aspect of litigation that occurs before the trial begins. USAGE: “pretrial proceedings , pretrial motions , pretrial conference.” [1]

interrogatories – written questions, which are a form of discovery, put by one party to another, or , in limited situations, to a witness in advance of trial.

deposition – the transcript of a witness’s testimony, given under oath outside the courtroom, usually before the trial or hearing, upon oral examination or in response to written interrogatories. Fed. R. Civ. P. 30 Fed. R. Crim. P. 15. — aka examination before trial.

evidence – testimony, documents, tangible objects which prove or disprove the existence of an alleged fact.

pretrial conference:

1. An informal meeting at which opposing attorneys confer, usually with the judge, to work toward the disposition of the case by discussing matters of evidence and narrowing the issues that will be tried.  See Fed. R. Civ. P. 16; Fed. R. Crim. P. 17.1.  *  The conference takes place shortly before trial and ordinarily results in a pretrial order. — Often shortened to pretrial. — aka pretrial hearing.

pretrial detention See DETENTION (1).

pretrial disclosure See DISCLOSURE (2).

pretrial discovery – See DISCOVERY.

pretrial diversion See DIVERSION PROGRAM (1).

pretrial intervention (1974) 1. DIVERSION PROGRAM (1). 2. See DEFERRED PROSECUTION (1). 3. See deferred judgment under JUDGMENT (2). ‘

pretrial investigation (1946) Military law. An investigation to decide whether a case should be recommended for forwarding to a general court-martial.

pretrial order (1939) A court order setting out the claims and defenses to be tried, the stipulations of the parties, and the case’s procedural rules, as agreed to by the parties or mandated by the court at a pretrial conference. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 16(e)*  In federal court, a pretrial order supersedes the pleadings.

pretrial services – An investigation of a federal criminal defendant’s background, conducted after the defendant has been arrested and charged but before trial, to help the court determine whether to release or detain the defendant pending trial.  *  If the court orders release, a pretrial services officer supervises the defendant on release. [1]

pretrial conference calendar – A court calendar, in addition to the trial calendar, listing the cases wherein a pretrial conference has been called and the time therefor. Union Oil Co. v Hanes, 27 Cal App 2d 106, 80 PM 516; State ex rel. Kennedy v District Court, 121 Mont 320, 194 P2d 256, 2 ALR2d 1050.

pretrial deposition See deposition.

pretrial discovery See discovery.

pretrial procedure – Provision made by statute or rule fof court for a conference between court and counsel to consider simplification of the issues, the necessity or desirability of amendment of the pleadings, the possibility of obtaining admissions to avoid unnecessary proof, limitation on the number of expert witnesses, a preliminary reference, and such other matters as may aid in the disposition of the action. 53 Am Jlst Trial §11.

An informal proceeding before an administrative agency for the submission and consideration of facts, arguments, offers of settlement, and pr0posals of adjustment. 5 USC § 1004 (d). 
See deposition; discovery. [2]

pretrial conference – A conference held between the judge and counsel for all parties prior to trial, for the purpose of facilitating disposition of the case by, among other actions, simplifying the pleadings, narrowing the issues, obtaining stipulations to avoid unnecessary proof, and limiting the number of witnesses.

pretrial discovery See discovery.

pretrial diversion – See diversion program.

pretrial intervention See diversion program.

pretrial motions – Motions that may be filed prior to the commencement of a trial. EXAMPLES: a motion to suppress; a motion to dismiss.

pretrial orders – An order resulting from a pretrial conference.  It controls the way the trial is conducted, although it may be modified by a subsequent order. [3]


Disclaimer: All material throughout this website is compiled in accordance with Fair Use.

[1]:  Ballantine’s Law Dictionary Legal Assistant Edition
by Jack Ballantine (James Arthur 1871-1949).  Doctored by Jack G. Handler, J.D. © 1994 Delmar by Thomson Learning.  ISBN 0-8273-4874-6.

[2]: Black’s Law Dictionary Deluxe Tenth Edition by Henry Campbell Black & Editor in Chief Bryan A. Garner. ISBN: 978-0-314-62130-6

[3]: Ballantine’s Law Dictionary with Pronunciations
Third Edition
 by James A. Ballantine (James Arthur 1871-1949).  Edited by William S. Anderson.  © 1969 by THE LAWYER’S CO-OPERATIVE PUBLISHING COMPANY.  Library of Congress Catalog Card No. 68-30931



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