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In
law Law is a system A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelated elements that act according to a set of rules to form a unified whole. A system, surrounded and influenced by its environment, is described by its bounda ...
, the expression trial ''de novo'' means a "new
trial In law Law is a system A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelated elements that act according to a set of rules to form a unified whole. A system, surrounded and influenced by its environment, is described by i ...
" by a different tribunal (''de novo'' is a Latin expression meaning "afresh", "anew", "beginning again", hence the literal meaning "new trial"). A trial ''de novo'' is usually ordered by an
appellate court An appellate court, commonly called an ''appeals court'', ''court of appeals'' (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of varieties of the Eng ...
when the original trial failed to make a determination in a manner dictated by law.


Common law

In
common law In law, common law (also known as judicial precedent or judge-made law, or case law Case law is the collection of past legal decisions written by courts and similar tribunal A tribunal, generally, is any person or institution with authority ...
systems, one feature that distinguishes a trial ''de novo'' from an appellate proceeding is that new evidence may not ordinarily be presented in an appeal (though there are rare instances when it may be allowed—usually evidence that came to light only after the trial and could not, in all diligence, have been presented in the lower court). The general rule, is that an appeal must be based solely on "points of law", and not on "points of fact". Appeals are frequently based on a claim that the trial judge or jury did not allow or appreciate all the facts; if that claim is successful the appeal judges will often order a trial "de novo". In order to protect the individual's rights against
double jeopardy Double jeopardy is a procedural defence (primarily in common law jurisdictions) that prevents an accused person from being Trial, tried again on the same (or similar) charges following an acquittal in the same jurisdiction. A variation in Civ ...
, ordering a trial "de novo" is often the exclusive right of an appeal judge. For example, a system may relegate a claim of a certain amount to a
judge A judge is a person who presides over court A court is any person or institution, often as a government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a State (polity), state. In th ...

judge
but preserve the right to a new trial before a
jury A jury is a sworn body of people (the jurors) convened to render an impartial Impartiality (also called evenhandedness or fair-mindedness) is a principle of justice holding that decisions should be based on objectivity (philosophy), objective ...

jury
. In American federal courts, "de novo" can also refer to a
standard of review In law, the standard of review is the amount of Judicial deference, deference given by one court (or some other appellate tribunal) in reviewing a decision of a lower court or tribunal. A low standard of review means that the decision under review w ...
for courts of appeal. Sometimes, particularly potent issues are brought before an appeals court, such as a constitutional determination made by a lower court, or summary judgment granted by a lower court. When this sort of issue is on appeal, the court of appeals will review the lower court decision "de novo" or from the beginning. In this process, the panel of judges for the court of appeals will review the lower court's reasoning and fact-finding from the beginning, based on the record. This is a high level of scrutiny that is more likely to result in reversal or remand of an issue. This is in contrast to more relaxed standards of review such as "clearly erroneous" or "substantial evidence." These relaxed standards usually do not result in reversals, as the court of appeals grants more deference to the judgment of the lower courts.


United Kingdom

In UK law,
appeals In law Law is a system A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelated elements that act according to a set of rules to form a unified whole. A system, surrounded and influenced by its environment, is described by ...
to the
Crown Court The Crown Court of England and Wales is, together with the High Court of Justice The High Court of Justice in London London is the capital city, capital and List of urban areas in the United Kingdom, largest city of England and the ...

Crown Court
against convictions in a
magistrates' court#REDIRECT Magistrates' court A magistrates' court is a lower court where, in several jurisdictions Jurisdiction (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages ...
are held ''de novo''. ''De novo'' review refers to the appellate court's authority to review the trial court's conclusions on questions of the application, interpretation, and construction of law. Generally, the proper standard of review for employee benefit decisions, such as the denial of benefit claims, is ''de novo''. Also, where the appellate court undertakes judicial review of compulsory arbitration proceedings that were required by statute, the reviewing court must conduct a ''de novo'' review of the interpretation and application of the law by the arbitrators.


United States

In the United States, some states provide for
bench trial A bench trial is a trial In law Law is a system A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelated elements that act according to a set of rules to form a unified whole. A system, surrounded and influenced by its envi ...
s only for
small claims Small-claims courts have limited jurisdiction to hear civil Civil may refer to: *Civic virtue, or civility *Civil action, or lawsuit *Civil affairs *Civil and political rights *Civil disobedience *Civil engineering *Civil (journalism), a platfo ...
, traffic offenses, and criminal offenses with a penalty of imprisonment of less than six months, then provide the ability to appeal a loss to the trial court of
general jurisdiction {{Globalize, article, USA, 2name=the United States, date=December 2010 A court of general jurisdiction is a court with authority to hear cases of all kinds – criminal law, criminal, civil law (common law), civil, family law, family, probate, and ...
for a brand-new trial. Unlike the appellate court which only examines the issues raised in the original trial, in a trial de novo a brand new trial takes place. The
Supreme Court of Virginia The Supreme Court of Virginia is the highest court in the Commonwealth of Virginia Virginia (), officially the Commonwealth of Virginia, is a U.S. state, state in the Mid-Atlantic (United States), Mid-Atlantic and Southeastern United States ...
said this in ''Santen v. Tuthill'', 265 Va. 492 (2003), about the practice of an appeal from district court ''trial de novo'' to circuit court: "This Court has repeatedly held that the effect of an appeal to circuit court is to 'annul the judgment of the inferior tribunal as completely as if there had been no previous trial.'" Some states use a system combining aspects of traditional appeal and absolute trial ''de novo''; for instance, in
New Jersey New Jersey is a U.S. state, state in the Mid-Atlantic States, Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern United States, Northeastern regions of the United States. It is bordered on the north and east by the state of New York (state), New York; on the ea ...
, decisions in minor criminal and traffic cases heard in the state's municipal courts may be appealed to the Law Division, Criminal Part of the
Superior Court In common law In law, common law (also known as judicial precedent or judge-made law, or case law Case law is the collection of past legal decisions written by courts and similar tribunal A tribunal, generally, is any person or institution ...
for "trial ''de novo'' on the record," in which the Law Division makes new findings of fact and conclusions of law based on the record produced in the municipal court's trial (i.e. based on the transcript of the municipal court proceeding and any physical or documentary evidence presented to the Municipal Court), but does not hold any evidentiary hearings itself.''State v. Loce'', 267 N.J. Super. 102, 104 (Law Div. 1991) It is often used in the review of ''
administrative proceeding An administrative proceeding is a ''non-judicial'' determination of fault or wrongdoing and may include, in some cases, penalties of various forms. They are typically conducted by government A government is the system or group of people ...
s'' or the judgements of a ''
small claims court Small-claims courts have limited jurisdiction to hear civil Civil may refer to: *Civic virtue, or civility *Civil action, or lawsuit *Civil affairs *Civil and political rights *Civil disobedience *Civil engineering *Civil (journalism), a platfo ...
''. If the determination made by a lower body is overturned, it may be renewed ''de novo'' in the review process (this is usually before it reaches the court system). Sometimes administrative decisions may be reviewed by the courts on a ''de novo'' basis.


See also

*
New trial A new trial or retrial is a recurrence of a court case. Depending on the rules of the jurisdiction, a new trial In law, a trial is a coming together of parties to a dispute, to present information (in the form of evidence Evidence, bro ...
*
Appeal In law Law is a system A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelated elements that act according to a set of rules to form a unified whole. A system, surrounded and influenced by its environment, is describ ...


References

{{Reflist Latin legal terminology Legal procedure Appellate review