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Prince Edward Island Court of Appeal

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Glossary of Terms (Criminal)

Glossary of some commonly used terms


A statement of factual information in support of a motion or application written down and sworn or affirmed to be true. An affidavit must be signed before a notary public or commissioner of oaths. 


Examination by a higher court of the decision of a lower court. The higher court may affirm, vary or reverse the original decision.


The person or party bringing the appeal to the Court of Appeal.

Appeal Book:

Rule 82.11 of the Rules of Civil Procedure lists the documents which form the appeal book. The Appeal Book should contain a Notice of Appeal or Cross Appeal, decision and order of the trial judge, indictment or information, agreed statement of facts, exhibits. If the appeal is against sentence-a pre-sentence report, victim impact statement, criminal record, or any restitution, probation, or conditional order.

Appeal allowed:

The Court of Appeal decided in favour of the appellant (the party bringing the appeal).

Appeal dismissed:

The Court of Appeal decided in favour of the respondent (the party against whom the appeal is brought) and against the appellant.

Application for Leave to Appeal:

The procedure for requesting permission of the Court of Appeal to hear an appeal.

Book of Authorities:

A list and photocopies of court decisions or past judgments that are relevant to the issues and are referred to in the factum. The Court of Appeal publishes a List of Commonly Cited Authorities, which parties may refer to without copying and filing the case decision. (See: Court of Appeal Practice Directions at Section 5(c).)

Charter: The Charter of Rights and Freedoms

The Charter is that part of the Constitution which guarantees the rights and freedoms set out in it subject to reasonable limits which are prescribed by law


An appeal filed by a respondent where the appellant has already commenced an appeal and the respondent wants to appeal something from the judgment of the trial court.

Entering an Order:

Once a judgment has been pronounced, a document (order) is prepared that succinctly sets out the decision of the court or judge. This order must be filed with the Deputy Registrar and distributed in accordance with the Rules.


Documentary or physical evidence that was relied upon by the lower court.


A bound volume filed with the Court that puts forward the case of the party (appellant or respondent). A factum is made up of the following parts: index, chronology, opening statement, statement of facts, issues on appeal, argument, and nature of the order sought.


Final decision of a court in a legal proceeding. The terms "judgment" and "decision" are interchangeable. A judgment may be written or given orally in court.


Permission of a judge in chambers or a panel of judges to take a step, in certain types of cases, to proceed with the appeal. For example, "leave of the court" must be obtained to commence an appeal from sentence.


An application (request) to a court for an order or judgment which occurs during the course of a court proceeding. Motions can be made for many purposes, including asking for extensions of time to file an appeal, for leave to appeal, or for appointment of legal counsel. A motion must be brought by notice and include an affidavit giving details of the request.

Motion (Application) for leave to appeal:

The procedure for requesting permission from the Court of Appeal to hear an appeal.

Notice of Appeal:

The form completed and filed by the appellant that starts the appeal process.

Notice of Motion:

The form completed and filed by the appellant or respondent that begins a process in the Court of Appeal chambers.


A decision of a Court. It may or may not be the final outcome of the matter.


The panel of three judges of the Court of Appeal who will hear the appeal.

Party or Parties:

The party who brings the proceeding to the Court of Appeal is called the appellant. The appellant appeals the decision of a lower court. The party against whom an appeal is brought and who must respond to the appellant’s case is called the respondent.

Reserved judgment:

When a judge or judges do not immediately give their decision, but the decision is postponed pending deliberation and then followed by a written decision at a later date.


The person who responds to or opposes an appeal.


The delivery of a document to another party to the proceeding. Rule 82.05 of the Rules of Civil Procedure sets out procedures that must be followed when serving documents.


A law or Act enacted or passed into law by The Parliament of Canada or the Legislature of Prince Edward Island.


To postpone the operation of a judgment or order pending an appeal.


A person who prepares a record of the proceedings. A court transcriber is certified by the Court to do so.


A typed record of the oral proceedings before the court or tribunal under appeal, including the evidence given by the witnesses who testified at the trial.


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