AskDefine | Define retrial

Dictionary Definition

retrial n : a new trial in which issues already litigated and to which the court has already rendered a verdict or decision are reexamined by the same court; occurs when the initial trial is found to have been improper or unfair due to procedural errors

User Contributed Dictionary



  1. A second trial, by the original court, if the original trial was found to be improper or unfair

Extensive Definition

New trial refers to the retrial of a court case. Depending on the rules of the jurisdiction, a new trial may occur if:
  • a jury is unable to reach a verdict (see hung jury);
  • a judge grants a party's motion for a new trial, usually on the grounds of a legal defect in the original trial; or
  • the losing party in an original trial wins on appeal.
In some types of cases (for example, if the original trial court was not a court of record) or in some legal systems, if the losing party to a case appeals, then the appellate court itself will hold a new trial, known as a trial de novo.
In the United States, if a defendant is acquitted of a crime, the Fifth Amendment generally prohibits a retrial; thus, with few exceptions, a retrial only can occur if the verdict in the first trial was "guilty," or if there was no verdict. In other legal systems, the rules may be different.

See also

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  • trial de novo


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