How Courts Work

Steps in a Trial

Motions after Verdict

Motions permitted after a verdict is announced differ from state to state.

  • A motion in arrest of judgment questions the sufficiency of the indictment or information in a criminal case and asks that the judgment not be enforced.
  • A motion for judgment notwithstanding the verdict is the equivalent in civil cases to the motion in arrest of judgment. It may be made after the jury's decision is announced but before a judgment is entered. This motion asks the judge to enter a judgment for the losing party despite the decision of the jury.
  • A motion for a new trial asks for a new trial to be granted, based on errors committed by the judge during the trial. In some states, the losing party must make a motion for a new trial before filing an appeal.

>>Diagram of How a Case Moves Through the Courts
>>Civil and Criminal Cases
>>Settling Cases
>>Pre-trial Procedures in Civil Cases
>>Jurisdiction and Venue
>>Pleadings
>>Motions
>>Discovery
>>Pre-Trial Conferences
>>Pre-trial Procedures in Criminal Cases
>>Bringing the Charge
>>Arrest Procedures
>>Pre-Trial Court Appearances in Criminal Cases
>>Bail
>>Plea Bargaining
>>Civil and Criminal Trials
>>Officers of the Court
>>The Jury Pool
>>Selecting the Jury
>>Opening Statements
>>Evidence
>>Direct Examination
>>Cross-examination
>>Motion for Directed Verdict/Dismissal
>>Presentation of Evidence by the Defense
>>Rebuttal
>>Final Motions
>>Closing Arguments
>>Instructions to the Jury
>>Mistrials
>>Jury Deliberations
>>Verdict
>>Motions after Verdict
>>Judgment
>>Sentencing
>>Appeals


How Courts Work Home | Courts and Legal Procedure | *Steps in a Trial*
The Human Side of Being a Judge | Mediation

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