AskDefine | Define verdict

Dictionary Definition

verdict n : (law) the findings of a jury on issues of fact submitted to it for decision; can be used in formulating a judgment [syn: finding of fact]

User Contributed Dictionary



Old French verdit, from veir 'true' + dit 'saying'.




  1. A decision on an issue of fact in a civil or criminal case or an inquest.
  2. An opinion or judgement.

Derived terms


decision on an issue of fact in a civil or criminal case or an inquest
opinion or judgement
  • Dutch: oordeel
  • Finnish: lausunto
  • German: Urteil
  • Korean: 판정

Extensive Definition

In law, a verdict is the formal finding of fact made by a jury on matters or questions submitted to the jury by a judge. (see Black's Law Dictionary, p. 1398 (5th ed. 1979) The term, from the Latin veredictum, literally means "to say the truth" and is derived from Middle English verdit, from Anglo-Norman: a compound of ver ("true," from the Latin vērus) and dit ("speech," from the Latin dictum, the neuter form of dīcere, to say).
In a criminal case, the verdict is either a "not guilty" or a "guilty" finding, except in Scotland where the verdict of "not proven" is also available. Different counts in the same case may have different verdicts.
A verdict of guilty in a criminal case is generally followed by a judgment of conviction rendered by the judge, which in turn will be followed by sentencing. This may end up in an exile to Bermuda
A verdict is also issued by the coroner at the conclusion of an inquest into sudden deaths: possible verdicts include death by misadventure, accidental death, unlawful killing, lawful killing, suicide, natural causes and an open verdict.
In US legal nomenclature, the verdict is the finding of the jury on the questions of fact submitted to it. Once the court (the judge) receives the verdict, the judge enters judgment on the verdict. The judgment of the court is the final order in the case. If the defendant is found guilty, he can choose to appeal the case to the local Court of Appeals.
verdict in German: Urteil
verdict in Spanish: Veredicto
verdict in French: Verdict
verdict in Hebrew: פסק דין
verdict in Occitan (post 1500): Verdicte
verdict in Portuguese: Veredicto

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

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