competent to stand trial | Definition

Doc's CJ Glossary by Adam J. McKee
Course: Procedural Law

Competent to stand trial is a legal term that refers to a person’s ability to understand the nature of criminal proceedings and to assist in their own defense.

In order to be competent to stand trial, a person must have a sufficient ability to comprehend the charges against them, the potential consequences of those charges, and the legal process in general. They must also be able to communicate with their attorney and to understand and follow court proceedings. If a person is found to be not competent to stand trial, they may be unable to participate in their own defense and may require treatment in order to become competent.

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Last Modified: 01/08/2023


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