Duhaime's Law Dictionary


Verdict Definition:

French: truth told; the decision of a jury.

Related Terms: Jury, Perverse Verdict, Jury Nullification, Grand Jury

In criminal cases, this is usually expressed as "guilty" or "not guilty". In a civil case, the verdict would be a finding for the plaintiff or for the defendant.

In Anthony v Anthony, the Supreme Court of Georgia noted that:

“The meaning of the word verdict (is) a true saying.”

In Groves v State, the reasons of Justice Gilbert of the same court, contained these words:

“The object of all legal investigations is the discovery of truth….

“The word (verdict) imports verity … a true saying….

"A verdict is a declaration of the truth as to the matters submitted to the jury…. It is a very important act. It is a culmination of the trial, and embodies the conclusions of the jury upon the questions of fact litigated upon the trial.”

In Szlinsky v Denhup, the Supreme Court of Connecticut:

“A verdict of the jury is the jury’s answer to the question of fact contained in the issue formed by the pleadings of the parties.”

REFERENCES:

  • Anthony v Anthony, 29 S.E. 923 (1898)
  • Groves v State, 132 S.E. 796 (1926) Ed. Note: extracts from the case have been reordered slightly to promote readability.
  • Szlinsky v Denhup, 239 A. 2d 595 (1968)

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