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What Is Remand?

A remand can have 2 distinct legal definitions. Firstly, a remand can mean that a case is sent back to a lower court in order for the lower court to execute a higher court order. Secondly, a remand can mean placing an individual under another’s custody. Both meanings signify the derivation of the word remand from the Latin word remandare, which means to commit back.

The first meaning of a remand is used when a higher court sends a case back to a lower court for reconsideration. This is usually done when the higher court finds an error in procedure. A procedural error may be the failure to admit witnesses or evidence or an improper ruling on a motion filed by one of the litigants. In this case, the higher court will send the case back to the lower court to fix the error made by admitting the evidence or witness or providing a different ruling on the motion filed. It is also possible for the lower court to try the case on remand if fixing a procedural error is not enough to satisfy the higher court order. A retrial on remand is referred to as a full remand.

The second meaning may involve the court issuing an individual a remand to jail. The purpose of this remand is in accordance with the belief that the individual may require a longer imprisonment so as to await a trial or legal proceeding. A remand to jail does not necessarily equate to guilt but means that the individual must be detained until further legal action is taken.

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