Circuit Court Clerk


Glossary of Terms

Resort to a superior court to review the decision of an inferior court or administrative agency.

Bill of Cost
   A Statement of Services rendered as to various Court fees, pleadings, etc.

Calendar Call
   A court session given to calling the cases awaiting trial to determine the present status of each case and commonly to assign a trial date.

   The original or initial pleading by which an action is commenced under codes of Rules of Civil Procedure.

Conditional Judgment
   Judgment against a third party for failure to comply with garnishment/levy.

   A process in which money or goods in the hands of a third person which are due to a defendant, are attached by the plaintiff.

Jury Calendar
   A list of cases set for trial each day during the Jury Calendar term.

   An application made to a court, or judge, for purpose of obtaining a rule or order directing some act to be done in favor of the applicant.

Minute Book
   A book kept by the clerk of a court for entering memoranda of its proceedings.

Motion Docket
   A list of motions set each Friday morning at 9:00 a.m.

Non-Jury Calendar
   A list of cases set for trial each day during the Non-Jury Calendar term.

Nulla bona
   Goods, chattels and property that is not to be found.

Order of Installment Payments
   A direction of the court on some matter incidental to the main proceeding that adjudicates a preliminary point or directs some step in the proceeding.

   A formal written application to a court requesting judicial action on a certain matter.

Pendente Lite
   Pending a lawsuit; during the actual progress of a lawsuit; during litigation.

   To annul, overthrow or vacate by judicial decision.

   A reimbursment of advance filing fees if collected from the bill of cost.

State Tax Penalty
   Failure to pay litigation tax in full within 45 days of the original cost bill date.

   A judicial order whereby some action is forbidden or held in abeyance until some event occurs or the court lifts its order.

Uncontested Divorce Calendar
   A list of uncontested divorce cases set each Wednesday morning at 9:00 a.m.

   A written judicial order to perform a specified act, or giving authority to have it done.


Jury Glossary Terms

Civil Trial
   In civil cases, an individual, entity or governmental agency brings a suit against another individual, entity or governmental agency. The party initiating the lawsuit is referred to as the plaintiff, and the party defending the suit is the defendant.

Criminal Trial
   In criminal cases, a district attorney acting on behalf of the citizens of Tennessee prosecutes a case against an individual or an entity accused of a crime. The district attorney is also referred to as the prosecutor. The person or entity accused of the crime is referred to as the defendant.

Jury Pool
   The jury pool is composed of those people summoned to appear on a particular day. Juries are selected from the jury pool. Many member of the jury pool, however, will not be selected to serve on a jury.

Jury Summons
   A court order requiring an individual to attend and be available to serve on a jury on a particular day. It does not mean you have been selected for a jury, simply that you must show up for the selection process. The summons will contain information about jury service and will have instructions on how to respond.

   To keep the jury isolated from contact from the public during the course of a trial. Juries that are sequestered stay at a local hotel at the expense of the county. It is very rare for a judge to order a jury to be sequestered.

Voir Dire
   Voir dire, pronounced (vwahr [with a near-silent "r"] deer,) is a French term that refers to the preliminary questioning of members of the jury pool to determine their qualifications to be a jury. This questioning may be conducted by either the judge or by the lawyers involved in a particular case. The purpose of these questions is to determine whether the prospective juror holds any views that may impair his or her ability to act impartially. It is critical that all potential juror answer these questions with care and honesty.