Writ of error

(redirected from writs of error)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Financial.
Related to writs of error: Error coram nobis

WRIT OF ERROR, practice. A writ issued out of a court of competent jurisdiction, directed to the judge of a court of record in which final judgment has been given, and commanding them, in some cases, themselves to examine the record; in others to send it to another court of appellate jurisdiction, therein named, to be examined in order that some alleged error in the proceeding may be corrected. Steph. Pl. 138; 2 Saund. 100, n. 1; Bac. Ab. Error, in pr.
     2. The first is called a writ of error coram nobis or vobis. When an issue in fact has been decided, there is not in general any appeal except by motion for a new trial; and although a matter. of fact should exist which was not brought into the issue, as for example, if the defendant neglected to Plead a release, which he might have pleaded, this is no error in the proceedings, though a mistake of the defendant. Steph. Pl. 139. But there are some facts which affect the validity and regularity of the proceeding itself, and to remedy these errors the party in interest may sue out the writ of error coram vobis. The death of one of the parties at the commencement of the suit; the appearance of an infant in a personal action, by an attorney, and not by guardian; the coverture of either party, at the commencement of the suit, when her husband is not joined with her, are instances of this kind. 1 Saund. 101; 1 Arch. Pr. 212; 2 Tidd's Pr. 1033; Steph. Pl. 140 1 Browne's Rep. 75.
     3. The second species is called, generally, writ of error, and is the more common. Its object is to review and correct an error of the law committed in the proceedings, which is not amendable, or cured at common law, or by some of the statutes of amendment or jeofail. Vide, generally, Tidd's Pr. ob. 43; Graham's Pr. B. 4, o. 1; Bac. Ab. Error; 1 Vern. 169; Yelv. 76; 1 Salk. 322; 2 Saund. 46, n. 6, and 101, n. 1; 3 Bl. Com. 405; Serg. Const. Law, ch. 5.
     4. In the French law the demande en cassation is somewhat similar to our proceeding in error; according to some of the best writers on French law, it is considered as a new suit, and it is less an action between the original parties, than a question between the judgment and the law. It is not the action which is to be judged, but the judgment; "la demande en cassation est un nouveau proces, bien moins entre les parties qui figuraient dans le premier, qu'entre l'arret et la loi." Henrion de Pansey, de l'Autorite judiciare dans les gouvernemens monarchiques, p. 270, edit. in 8 vols.; 6 Toull. n. 193. Ce n'est point le' proces qu'il s'agit de juger, mais le jugement. Ib.
     5. A writ of error is in the nature of a suit or action, when it is to restore the party who obtains it to the possession of any thing which is withheld from him, not when its operation is entirely defensive. 3 Story. Const. Sec. 1721. And it is considered generally as a new action. 6 Port 9.

References in periodicals archive ?
82) There is no explicit provision in the Act one way or the other for writs of error with respect to federal circuit court criminal cases.
Moore's failure to act may have been based in part on the fact that on 26 November he received notice that his royal instructions had been amended to reinstate the pre-1753 language that appeals could proceed only under writs of error.
Military courts will also hear writs of error coram nobis, but because of the post-trial nature of coram nobis (explained below), trial practitioners will almost never need to use it.
says "writs are more extensive than actions;" and in distinguishing between them, he classes writs of error with writs of oyer and terminer, and others in the nature of commissions.
In addition, the Court's rulings on motions to dismiss writs of error were often brief and revealed little of the Court's reasoning.