Judgment

The official decision of a court finally resolving the dispute between the parties to the lawsuit.

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Answers.com

Judgment, decision of a court of law respecting the issues before it. The term ordinarily is not applied to the decree (order) of courts of equity. The outstanding characteristic of a legal judgment, in contrast to an equitable decree, is its finality and fixity; thus, except for error justifying an appeal, the judgment may not be reconsidered (see jeopardy). The judgment, which in most cases of consequence follows the verdict of a jury, is the determination of the judge that the defendant is guilty or innocent of the alleged offense. If the judgment is one of criminal guilt, the court proceeds to impose sentence. In civil cases, when judgment is for the plaintiff, the court usually awards a sum as damages. The damages thereupon constitute a debt that takes priority over all other obligations of the defendant except taxes and previous judgments. If the debtor fails to pay, the sheriff, to execute the judgment, will seize and sell first his personal property and then his realty. The sheriff may also garnish monies owed to the defendant, e.g., his wages (see garnishment). Certain property of the debtor is exempt from seizure, including clothing, equipment needed to carry on his trade or profession, and the family homestead. In some jurisdictions a defendant who willfully refuses to pay a judgment may be punished for contempt of court. A judgment rendered by the courts of one state is entitled to recognition by the courts of all other states.

Duhaime Legal Dictionary

The decision of an issue, or issues in dispute, by a court of law after the evidence has been put to it by the litigants, and setting out the determination of their respective claims and resulting rights and thus concluding the litigation.

Encyclopedia Britannica

In all legal systems, a decision of a court adjudicating the rights of the parties to a legal action before it. A final judgment is usually a prerequisite of review of a court’s decision by an appellate court, thus preventing piecemeal and fragmentary appeals on interlocutory (provisional) rulings.

A judgment generally operates to settle finally and authoritatively matters in dispute before a court. Judgments may be classified as in personam, in rem, or quasi in rem. An in personam, or personal, judgment, the type most commonly rendered by courts, imposes a personal liability or obligation upon a person or group to some other person or group. This obligation may be to pay a sum of money, to perform some act, or to refrain from doing so. On the other hand, the judgment may be for the defendant, negating the plaintiff’s claim for relief.

Law.com Dictionary

The final decision by a court in a lawsuit, criminal prosecution or appeal from a lower court's judgment, except for an "interlocutory judgment," which is tentative until a final judgment is made. The word "decree" is sometimes used as synonymous with judgment.

Lawyers.com

A formal decision or determination on a matter or case by a court

Lect Law Library

JUDGMENT - A court's official decision on the matters before it. The declaration, by a court, of the rights and duties of the parties to a lawsuit which has been submitted to it for decision. Can also include an "injunction" a specific order to do or not to do something.

A final decision made by a judge on a material issue during a case is termed a judgment. A judgment can provide all or a portion of the relief sought in a case, including property division, alimony, child support, custody or an injunction.

The Free (Legal) Dictionary

A decision by a court or other tribunal that resolves a controversy and determines the rights and obligations of the parties.

A judgment is the final part of a court case. A valid judgment resolves all the contested issues and terminates the lawsuit, since it is regarded as the court's official pronouncement of the law on the action that was pending before it. It states who wins the case and what remedies the winner is awarded. Remedies may include money damages, injunctive relief, or both. A judgment also signifies the end of the court's jurisdiction in the case. The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and most state rules of civil procedure allow appeals only from final judgments.

A judgment must be in writing and must clearly show that all the issues have been adjudicated. It must specifically indicate the parties for and against whom it is given. Monetary judgments must be definite, specified with certainty, and expressed in words rather than figures. Judgments affecting real property must contain an explicit description of the realty so that the land can easily be identified.

Once a court makes a judgment, it must be dated and docketed with the court administrator's office. Prior to modern computer databases, judgments were entered in a docket book, in alphabetic order, so that interested outsiders could have official notice of them. An index of judgments was prepared by the court administrator for record keeping and notification purposes. Most courts now record their judgments electronically and maintain computer docketing and index information. Though the means of storing the information are different, the basic process remains the same.