- Judgment as a matter of law
Judgment as a matter of law (JMOL) is a motion made by a party, during trial, claiming the opposing party has insufficient evidence to reasonably support its case. JMOL is similar to
summary judgment, which is a motion made "before" trial. JMOL is also known as a directed verdict, which it has replaced in American Federal courts.
In United States Federal courts, JMOL is a creation of
Federal Rules of Civil ProcedureRule 50. JMOL is decided by the standard of whether a reasonable jury could find in favor of the party opposing the JMOL motion. If there is no evidence to support a reasonable conclusion for the opposing party, judgment is entered by the court and the case is over. If there is sufficient evidence to make a reasonable conclusion in favor of the opposing party, but there is equally strong evidence to support an opposite conclusion, the party with the burden of productionfails.
Timing is very important in making a motion for JMOL; the motion can only be made once the opposing party has presented its case. In civil cases, the
plaintiffpresents her case, then the defendantpresents his/her case, then the plaintiff may present a rebuttal. So, once the plaintiff has presented his/her case, the defendant may move for JMOL, but the plaintiff may not. Once the defendant has finished presenting his/her case, the plaintiff may move for JMOL, and so may the defendant.
JMOL motions may also be made after the verdict is returned, where they are called "renewed" motions for judgment as a matter of law (RJMOL), but the motion is still commonly known by its former name,
judgment notwithstanding the verdict, or j.n.o.v. (from the English judgmentand the latinnon obstante verdicto). However, in order to move for j.n.o.v., the movantmust have moved for a JMOL "before" the verdict as well. This procedural quirk is necessary because it is considered a violation of the 7th amendment for a judge to overturn a jury verdict. Instead, the judge is said in a j.n.o.v. to be reexamining not the verdict, but his previous rejection of JMOL.
renewed judgment as a matter of law
judgment notwithstanding the verdict
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Look at other dictionaries:
motion for judgment as a matter of law — n. A request for relief available to a party when there is no disputed fact issue. Webster s New World Law Dictionary. Susan Ellis Wild. 2000 … Law dictionary
judgment for the defendant as a matter of law — index nonsuit Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 … Law dictionary
matter — mat·ter n 1: a subject of consideration, disagreement, or litigation: as a: a legal case, dispute, or issue a matter within the court s jurisdiction often used in titles of legal proceedings matter of Doe see also in re b … Law dictionary
judgment — judg·ment also judge·ment / jəj mənt/ n 1 a: a formal decision or determination on a matter or case by a court; esp: final judgment in this entry compare dictum, disposition … Law dictionary
law — / lȯ/ n [Old English lagu, of Scandinavian origin] 1: a rule of conduct or action prescribed or formally recognized as binding or enforced by a controlling authority: as a: a command or provision enacted by a legislature see also statute 1 b:… … Law dictionary
judgment notwithstanding the verdict — see judgment 1a Merriam Webster’s Dictionary of Law. Merriam Webster. 1996. judgment notwithstanding the verdict … Law dictionary
Judgment (law) — Civil procedure in the United States Federal Rules of Civil Procedure Doctrines of civil procedure Jurisdiction Subject matter jurisdiction Diversity jurisdiction Personal jurisdiction Removal jurisdiction Venue Change of venue … Wikipedia
Judgment notwithstanding verdict — Civil procedure in the United States Federal Rules of Civil Procedure Doctrines of civil procedure Jurisdiction Subject matter jurisdiction Diversity jurisdiction Personal jurisdiction Removal jurisdiction Venue Change of venue … Wikipedia
judgment on the pleadings — noun a judgment rendered by the court prior to a verdict because no material issue of fact exists and one party or the other is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law • Syn: ↑summary judgment, ↑summary judgement, ↑judgement on the pleadings •… … Useful english dictionary
matter for judgment — index case (lawsuit), controversy (lawsuit), lawsuit Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 … Law dictionary