jury nullification
jury nullification n: the acquitting of a defendant by a jury in disregard of the judge's instructions and contrary to the jury's findings of fact
◇ Jury nullification is most likely to occur when a jury is sympathetic toward a defendant or regards the law under which the defendant is charged with disfavor. Except for a statutory requirement to the contrary, a jury does not have to be instructed on the possibility of jury nullification.

Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary of Law. . 1996.

jury nullification
A decision by the jury to acquit a defendant who has violated a law that the jury believes is unjust or wrong. Jury nullification has always been an option for juries in England and the United States, although judges will prevent a defense lawyer from urging the jury to acquit on this basis. Nullification was evident during the Vietnam War (when selective service protesters were acquitted by juries opposed to the war) and currently appears in criminal cases when the jury disagrees with the punishment — for example, in "three strikes" cases when the jury realizes that conviction of a relatively minor offense will result in lifetime imprisonment.
Category: Small Claims Court & Lawsuits

Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary. . 2009.


jury nullification
A sanctioned doctrine of trial proceedings wherein members of a jury disregard either the evidence presented or the instructions of the judge in order to reach a verdict based upon their own consciences. It espouses the concept that jurors should be the judges of both law and fact.

Dictionary from West's Encyclopedia of American Law. 2005.


jury nullification
A sanctioned doctrine of trial proceedings wherein members of a jury disregard either the evidence presented or the instructions of the judge in order to reach a verdict based upon their own consciences. It espouses the concept that jurors should be the judges of both law and fact.

Short Dictionary of (mostly American) Legal Terms and Abbreviations.

Look at other dictionaries:

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  • nullification — nul·li·fi·ca·tion /ˌnə lə fə kā shən/ n: the act of nullifying: the state of being nullified see also jury nullification Merriam Webster’s Dictionary of Law. Merriam Webster. 1996 …   Law dictionary

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