My New Legal Vocabulary, Thanks To “The Good Wife”
My latest show binge has been The Good Wife. It’s been on my list for a while for three reasons:
(1) I love shows with a strong, female lead
(2) Julianna Margulies has won or been nominated for the Emmy for Best Actress in a Drama 4 times in the last 5 years
(3) Logan Huntzberger (Matt Czuchry) from Gilmore Girls is a main character ❤
I’m currently on Season 3 of 5 and I feel like I could pass the bar exam purely due to my binge-watching. Here are a few new words in my vocabulary …
Voir Dire: a preliminary examination of a witness or a juror by a judge or counsel.
Jury Nullification: a jury returns a verdict that is the opposite of what the jury believes or the verdict it was instructed to return by the court.
Held in Contempt: When a court decides that an action constitutes contempt of court, it can issue a court order that in the context of a court trial or hearing declares a person or organization to have disobeyed or been disrespectful of the court’s authority.
Continuance: a postponement or adjournment
Sustained vs Overruled:
Sustained: When an objection is sustained, the judge has determined that is a valid objection. That means the question was improper under the rules of evidence. The witness may not answer the question.
Overruled: When an objection is overruled, the judge has determined the objection is invalid. The question may stand. The witness must then answer the question.
Punitive Damages: damages exceeding simple compensation and awarded to punish the defendant.
ASA: Assistant State’s Attorney is hired or appointed to the position by the elected state’s attorney and derives the power to act on behalf of the state in criminal prosecutions through the state’s attorney. The duties of an ASA include those of the state’s attorney—representing the state (prosecution) in criminal proceedings.
The trick is weaving my new vocabulary into everyday conversation in my non-legal workplace. Think anyone would object if I tried to ask someone leading a meeting to recuse himself?