International Criminal Court

International Criminal Court and the U.S. Position in the United States The United States is not a party to the Rome Statute. The United States signed the Statute on December 31, 2000, but at the time, the Clinton Administration had objections to it and said it would not submit it to the […]


Probation in the United States A criminal sentence that allows a person to return to the community under supervised release. Probation is an alternative to imprisonment and is applied to almost two-thirds of sentenced offenders in the United States. Control is maintained over the offender by […]

Death Sentence

In Legislation Death Sentence in the U.S. Code: Title 18, Part II, Chapter 228 The current, permanent, in-force federal laws regulating death sentence are compiled in the United States Code under Title 18, Part II, Chapter 228. It constitutes "prima facie" evidence of statutes […]


Verdict in the United States A finding by a jury on a fact question formally submitted to it for deliberation. The verdict is reported to the court and announced. Either party is entitled to request that the jury be polled. This requires that each juror disclose in open court his or her vote. […]

Searches And Seizures

Searches And Seizures in the United States Searches And Seizures and the State Laws Select from the list of U.S. States below for state-specific information on Searches And Seizures: Searches And Seizures in the Subject Index of the Alabama Portal Searches And Seizures in the Subject Index of […]


Fines in the United States Description Fines are financial punishments attached to a conviction for a given offense, and are either specified as a fixed dollar amount or variable range. For example, in Washington State, a first-time drug conviction can result in a $1,000 fine, with each […]


Disclosure in the United States Release of information by one side in a legal case to the other side. Disclosure typically involves a prosecutor revealing information to the defense in a criminal case, but defense disclosure occurs in certain situations as well. Disclosure is a kind of […]


Discretion in the United States Power possessed by officials to act on the basis of their own judgment. Discretion gives officials choices in making decisions, but the choices are not unbounded. Rather, discretion is generally circumscribed by some rules or principles and cannot be arbitrarily […]

Grand Jury

Grand Jury in the United States An investigative body that makes accusations rather than determines guilt. The grand jury evaluates information generated on its own or brought to it by a prosecutor. If the grand jury determines that probable cause exists, it returns an indictment against an […]

General Provisions

General Provisions in the United States General Provisions in Federal Practice and Procedure This section provides comprehensive coverage of the main aspects of general provisions in relation to federal procedure, including an analysis of the rules as interpreted and applied by the federal […]


Appeal in the United States A request to an appellate or superior court to review a final judgment made in a lower court. Appellate jurisdiction is the power conferred upon appeals courts to conduct such a review. It empowers the court to set aside or modify the lower court decision. An […]